As the education world moves further down the digital path, it’s good to have a grasp of some useful tools that can make your classroom experience more meaningful.
These are 5 apps that I simply couldn’t live without as an early elementary teacher.
Seesaw: Gone are the days of paper portfolios. Students can create their very own digital portfolio using Seesaw. The Seesaw Class app allows students to share and create work in extremely creative ways. Students can communicate with their teacher and there are many safeguards and controls built in for teachers. Families can also enjoy their child’s work and communicate with teachers through the Seesaw Family app. The app is extremely user friendly and even preschoolers can create and upload content!
RAZ Kids: This reading app is extremely useful and robust. It is a series of levelled readers, starting with high-frequency sight words going all the way up to late elementary school. There is a gamified aspect to the app where children can earn stars by reading more and doing more comprehension tests. With the stars they can build a robot or a rocket. There are assignments that they can record and send to the teacher as well as a variety of assessment tools for teachers. Students can have an entire levelled library in their portable device!
iMovie: This video editing app comes with every iOs and Apple device. It is easy to use and allows students to be extremely creative. They can shoot their own videos and movies and add transitions, text and music with ease. Once those amazing video creations are complete, they can share them with their classmates and parents by using Seesaw.
Epic: Have any reluctant readers in your class? Show them Epic and things may soon change. This app contains what seems like an endless library of picture books and chapter books in a large variety of genres. Every student I have taught who used Epic simply loved it. Even I use it regularly to do my own reading!
Pages: This production app allows students to write documents as well as design posters and brochures. It is extremely easy to use and I used to have my first graders create posters and assignments using it. Pages is a must have app if you want your students producing great digital content.
About the Author:
Kevin O’Shea is an IB/PYP educator currently based in Beijing, China. He is a father, husband, and avid conservationist. Kevin is also the host of the upcoming Making Better Teachers Podcast as well as the host of the long-running Just Japan Podcast.