Favourite apps for educators and students
Behaviour management app ClassDojo is a favourite at Koputaroa School, says teacher Becky Ward. Each child is assigned a profile, chooses an avatar, and earns or loses points called “dojos”…
Behaviour management app ClassDojo is a favourite at Koputaroa School, says teacher Becky Ward. Each child is assigned a profile, chooses an avatar, and earns or loses points called “dojos” for behaviours. Points can also go to groups or tables, and toward goals. A “random” button gives points away for a bit of fun. Teachers can decide what the points can be cashed in for, says Ward. Parent access is available. Free. Works on Android, iOS, computers and other devices.
Book Creator is CORE Education Alannah King’s standout favourite app. It allows students to create their own iBooks on iPad. The latest version costs $7.49 per child. Students drag and drop pictures, video, text and other elements onto the page, create backgrounds and stickers, share and, of course, read. A pen tool allows students to draw straight onto the page. It’s simple with many uses. iOS.
Pic Collage for Kids (iOS) Pic Collage for Kids is the digital version of the age-old favourite. It can be used to create a collage that tells a story or to showcase children’s research. Collages made in the app can be shared with Blogger or combined with ThingLink . And it gets the thumbs up from Kia Ata Mai Educational Trust for use in Māori medium. Use the ‘for kids’ version. An alternative for Android is Photo Grid. Free.
Seesaw: The Learning Journal (iOS and Android) Russell Street School’s pupils and teachers are excited about this multimedia journal app. It’s a studentdriven digital portfolio that students use to document what they’re learning. It’s simple, but powerful, and allows children to create an organised, digital portfolio using photos, videos, drawing, text notes and links. Free for teachers and students, but not parents.
StaffSync It’s a principal’s nightmare. You have 30 children waiting for a teacher who calls in sick. StaffSync for Apple and Android is an app that connects relievers and schools seamlessly. It’s the Uber or Airbnb of relieving. Developed with the help of the Remuera School Cluster, it automates finding preferred relievers and communicating with them (as well as the production of SAA and SUE reports). www.staffsync.co.nz
Banqer is a mock online banking system for classrooms. It takes class currency systems to a new level and gives students a go at managing their money first hand in a safe environment. Students set up accounts and learn how interest and tax works. They can watch their balances grow or use them to pay fines. Targeted (for now) at years 4-8. www.banqer.co
Imagistory – Creative Storytelling App for Kids: Wordless picture books encourage imagination and creativity. Children use Imagistory to create and record their own stories, in which the narrative, emotion and detail are inspired by illustration. Stories can be recorded and played back and shared with others via email or video. On iTunes.
Office Mix: Microsoft’s PowerPoint just got super powers. Office Mix allows teachers to add audio, video, inking on slides, interactive activities and assessments to their presentations. Teachers can share their Office Mix lesson plans online. Examples of education-related Office Mix presentations at Mix.office.com/Gallery
Math Machine: Students learn te reo Māori and maths with one app. Math Machine is a Kiwi app with 40 levels that’s designed to make maths fun and addictive. Bilingual functionality. Available on iOS.
InnerVoice: Around 40 percent of children with autism are nonverbal. Technology makes a significant difference for them. InnerVoice is an icon-to-speech application, which allows the learner to touch a picture and it is converted to speech. Visit www.innervoiceapp.com