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Mobile Apps in Education



Š Central Michigan University All rights reserved.


Authors’ Page G ALLERY Mobile Apps in Education.1 Central Michigan University Students in Dr. Dirkin’s EDU 290: Educational Technology Fall 2013 course created all of the content for each of the sections in this book.

Photo by Justin Fluharty

Authors: Jessica Anderson, Bethany Bell, Jaymie Collins, Emily Crick, Nicole Czehowski, Rebekah Delugach, Hollie Elbers, Tina Fisher, Danielle Germain, JoLee Greer, Colin Heffernan, Andrew Heinz, Kevin Hess, Brandon Hull, Samantha Keeler, Caylie McMath, Jared McNally, Jared Mervenne, Matt Meyer, Sara Otto, Amy Quinlan, Justin Rabineau, Chris Rishko, Abigail Schafer, Emily Sinclair, Ali Starzynski, Trisha Turner, Samantha Warblow, Thomas Webster


Special Acknowledgements

This project was created and directed by Dr. Kathryn Dirkin, faculty instructor for Central Michigan University’s Educational Technology Course. The main authors of this book, of course, are the students of that course. If you have any questions about the project you can email Dr. Dirkin at There are a lot of people that made this project possible. We would like to thank our partners in Dr. McLeod’s Reading Methods course. We would also like to thank Mike Reuter, Deb Vanliew and Greg Hanley. Rob Alford helped us assemble the project. We could not have completed this project without the support of the Chair of the Teacher Education and Professional Development Department, Dr. Larry Corbett and the Dean of the College of Education and Human Services, Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson. Design Team: The final production of the book was designed and created by Nicole Czehowski, Amy Quinlan, and Dr. Dirkin.




This section focuses on apps that involve eBooks.


Sparkle Fish

A BOUT THE A UTHOR Samantha Warblow is a student at Central Michigan University and is studying to become a Special Education teacher at the Elementary level with minors in Reading and Language Arts. For this App study she has chosen to study the App Sparkle Fish. In hopes to use it some day in her own classroom, she chose something that would help kids learn the parts of speech and help with their reading abilities. Her hope is to teach students students around the 3rd to 5th grade levels. She believes that the earlier she can be apart of a student’s education, the better.

application. This activity is a great tool to help users get to know examples of the parts of speech and how to properly use types of words. Once the user opens the app, the activity will begin with asking what type of story the user wants to help create. Once selected, the user starts recording certain types of words to be added to the story. The recorded stories are added into the proper places and it reads and replays the story back to the user. This application is compatible with both the iPod and iPad and is at no cost.

U SING THE A PPLICATION Sparkle Fish is a fun and creative application. The video below will demonstrate how to use the app and show its features.


I NTRODUCTION Sparkle Fish is an application that allows its users to create their own stories in a way similar to “mad libs”. While using the app, it will ask the user to name an adjective, a noun, etc. The user says the words out loud and they are recorded with the device to be added to a story already loaded in the 5

C LASSROOM U SES Using “Sparkle Fish” in the classroom can be very beneficial, especially while teaching the parts of speech. When it comes time for students to start practicing the uses of each part of speech, it will be important for them to be able to see and hear how the words are used. This app can be a fun way to show kids why these different types of words are so important. When thinking of how to apply this app to an online lesson plan, this app goes great with “Sentence Quest: Using Parts of Speech.” This lesson plan was found in ReadWriteThink . It focuses on students working in groups and sharing their work. After writing complete sentences, it would be a fun way for students to be able to create a wild, creative story with the “Sparkle Fish” app. With this app and lesson plan, it focuses of Bloom’s level of applying. Students are learning words and what they mean and are now able to put them together to form complete sentences.   

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES • ReadWriteThink . • Additional tutorial




A BOUT THE A UTHOR My name is Samantha Keeler and I attend Central Michigan University. I am currently a sophomore. I am a double major in Health Education and Visual Arts Education with an additional minor in Middle Level Education. All of this goes to say, that my true passion is to teach health education at the junior high level. I think it is very important for people, especially at a young and impressionable age, to learn what it means to be healthy and how to achieve the confidence of knowing that you are the best you can be.

These tools include the reading of words out loud, interactive pictures, and books with different reading levels. There are also specific tools that parents can use to control and limit what their child is able to view. Parents can set up blocks as well as download books for their child to read. Inside of a select book, the child can select a word to be read aloud, choose to have the page read to them, look at moving pictures, listen to sounds, and turn the page as if it were a real book. The Booksy application is compatible with the ipad.

U SING THE A PPLICATION Booksy is an application for the ipad that is a good tool for reading with young children. Below is a video that demonstrates how to use this application.

M OVIE 1.1 Booksy Application Tutorial

I NTRODUCTION Booksy is an application that assists children in grades Kindergarten through second grade in learning how to read. The child is able to select a book and can use various assistance tools in the process. 7

C LASSROOM U SES This lesson plan discusses how to use an ebook in the classroom. It starts from the very beginning including explaining to the children what it looks like and how to use it. On top of that, it has other mini-lessons that demonstrate other, more complex, things that an ebook can do. This app, in particular, is great because it allows children to choose the book they are interested while also allowing the parent or supervising adult to limit the choices of books the children are allowed to choose from. So, if your lesson is about whales, you could have a selection of books only about whales for the kids to choose from.They will be able to read the book that is most interesting to them, while still learning the content they need to know.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES                                                       InKids Read Write Think



MeeGenius ABOUT THE AUTHOR Hollie Elbers was born and raised in Bay City, Michigan. Currently, she is a Junior at Central Michigan University going into elementary education with a major in language arts. She wishes to teach first or second grade.

I NTRODUCTION MeeGenius was created by Wandy Yeap-Ho because she felt there wasn’t a product on the market that satisfied the needs of parents to find books online for children. She was a business manager for many years but wanted to start her own business. Being a parent she found the perfect fit for her. Her and her co-founder Jon Lin spent 16 months doing research and development and then successfully launched this app.

  This application allows you to select children’s books and it reads you the story, it automatically turns the pages and allows you to pause it at anytime. The narrator does a good job making the story come alive and whatever word she is saying it lights up in yellow so the children can follow along. It’s a tool for getting children to start reading books. The app gives you six free books to start out with and you have the option to create an online book club where you suggest your favorite books to your friends which would be very helpful for parents or teachers on deciding what books to buy. You also have the option to go to the online bookstore to purchase a wide variety of books available by various authors. These books are available in hardcover in a store but an advantage to buying it on MeeGenius is the convenience of not having to run to the story every time you want a new book but also since you’re not paying for the paper to make the book or the retail markup found in stores the books are a lot cheaper. In the bookstore there is a featured section which highlights what they would recommend and also what books are new but if you wanted to get more specific on what kind of book you would want to buy for a child you can click on the “categories” button and choose from a large variety like animals, alphabet, bestsellers or diversity just to list a few. This application is compatible with both an iPod or an iPad but considering screen size I would recommend using the iPad if possible. This application would be perfect for a child but probably not suitable for a group of children because of the limitations of viewing the screen. If each 9

child had access to an iPad or even a small group of children it would be great in a classroom. I could also see this application being very practical in settings where you want to keep your child busy in a productive way like when you are in the car.

U SING THE A PPLICATION MeeGenius is a simple and innovative app. This video tutorial below will guide you through it.

MeeGenius App Tutorial


   There are many benefits to using this application in the classroom. First off, you don’t have to go to a library or go out of your way purchase a new book so it’s a real time saver. Also, the “categories” section makes it really easy to find what you are looking for and you won’t have to search through an endless stack of books either. Another thing I’ve noticed personally being in a classroom for two years now is children get excited by technology, whenever the teacher I work with plays an electronic book the kids seem to be able to keep engaged for longer periods of time. Another benefit is that in the classroom it’s impossible to be at all places at all times, this application allows a book to be read to them at any given moment and they can easily follow along. This would be more beneficial in certain ways than reading a book out loud to a group because typically they can’t see the words on the page so they aren’t getting to practice their own development of reading. This application is generally easy to follow along, they make the directions obvious and after some basic navigating you will know where everything is. I found a lesson plan that allows children to practice their reading skills and look deeper into the characters in the book. It will teach them not to just look at the surface level of the story but to make connections to what is happening and why which is considered higher level thinking. It will help them also to discover what traits are considered good or bad by looking closely at Prince Charming's character. It will promote what to look for in a positive role model and also teamwork by having the children work to10

gether to understand and analyze the story. It promotes Bloom’s understanding level, because it’s taking the information and asking the children to explain a summary of what happened, they are comparing good and bad traits in a person and then taking those traits to classify what kind of person Prince Charming is. Link to Lesson Plan


The video in the below link is an interview with an experience elementary teacher who incorporates MeeGenius into her own classroom. She mentions that her school really wanted to incorporate electronic books in the classroom as a way to build literacy, she finds stories that she thinks are what really going to interest the children like folktales and fairy tales. This is also a major benefit she states because some of the classic fairy tales aren’t being read in classrooms like they used to be. It builds vocabulary and a strong background in literature. She describes it as the perfect tool in the classroom and she can take what she knows and weave it into the usage of this application. This video was made by MeeGenius which states that MeeGenius was in over 2,300 schools. How Riverdale Uses MeeGenius in the Classroom Web version of MeeGenius




Meet Biscuit

The app Meet Biscuit is an interactive app for the ipad that can help children learn to read in a fun way. It can teach children words and help them understand how to sound out different words.The app has many different functions. The user can either choose to read the story on their own or have it be read to them. Each page has different sounds and animation. You can interact with the story and make different things happen. Not only is the app an interactive book, there are also games that you can play such as memory, puzzles, and a coloring book that include the lovable little puppy biscuit. Meet Biscuit is for the ipad. This device makes it easy to read and interact with the the app.

A BOUT THE A UTHOR    Trisha Turner is a sophomore at Central Michigan University. She is from Lake Orion, Michigan and is majoring in elementary education with a focus on Language Arts. In the future she hopes to become a kindergarten teacher.

U SING T HE A PPLICATION This video is a Meet Biscuit app tutorial. Learn how to use the app and its features and explore the app.


C LASSROOM U SES There are many benefits to using the app “Meet Biscuit” in the classroom. The options “read to me” or “read to myself” help improve comprehension of the students and help them get a better understanding of the content. The sounds and animations make the story more fun to read and make the kids excited to read. Each student can get a better understanding of the characters with a memory game. The coloring book can enhance creativity and the puzzle helps children learn about the story. The app is very easy to use. You can touch the screen to make biscuit move and click on the hidden balls to see a surprise from biscuit. This app is great to use in a lesson. It can be used in a literature circle. The kids can get into groups with ipads and go around and read to each other. If the material is too challenging for them, they can click the autoplay feature which will help the kids learn words as it reads to them. Once the kids are done with this activity, they can play some of the games to help them get a better understanding of the story and the characters. This app is a great example of Blooms Taxonomy, understanding. As kids read, they begin to understand how to say the words and what they look like.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Read Write Think Scholastic




Story Time

Inspired by her full-time job at a daycare called Curious Kids, Carly work with children K-5 for a full school-year and a full summer teaching her own class of students going into second grade. This job was one of the main factors in deciding Carly’s major of becoming an elementary teacher. With technology developing rapidly in education, the application “Story Time” is perfect for students and teachers to use in the classroom.

A BOUT THE A UTHOR Carly Crocker is majoring in Elementary Education at Central Michigan University. She was born in the Kalamazoo/Portage area but attended Mattawan Consolidated Schools for thirteen years. During her senior year of high school, Carly was granted the opportunity to complete a semester long internship with a mentor in her field of choice. At the time, Carly was certain her intended career choice was Special Education at the Secondary level. As she progressed her way through the internship, she had an opportunity to observe in a younger age based classroom and fell in love with the setting and the idea of teaching the younger students.

U SING THE A PPLICATION : This video will show step by step how to use the application Story Time. It allows students and teachers to work with technology in the classroom while improving the students’ reading skills. Students are able to interact with the characters throughout the different books available to read, allowing them to improve their comprehension of each reading. Being an educator with younger students requires teachers to present more hands-on activities to keep the students engaged and involved in classroom activities. With the iPad, teachers are now able to include educational games/applications in their everyday lessons. One of the thousands of applications in the App Store that are useful for daily education is called “Story Time”. This application gives the students a chance to read children’s storybooks online and complete activities for further comprehension; when the student chooses a book to read, they have the choice to read it independently or the application provides an option of having the story include a read-along with a woman’s voice. In between the pages of each book, there are games the children must participate in be14

fore continuing; this includes coloring a character, building some kind of object in the story, or even clicking on the characters will create their own separate noise. The application allows the students to get engaged with learning and keeps their attention. This application is available on both iPads, iPods, and iPhones. Story Time Information and Tutorial

students can be privileged in using the iPads for the Story Time application. If a student completes a certain task they’re rewarded with playing an educational game on the iPad. With this “game”, students are able to enjoy learning the reading material and improve their reading comprehension skills. While reading a story, children are able to tap the characters in the story and the character will make a noise or respond in some way; this helps the students interact more with the story. With the many different stories available on this application, there is a website with a lesson plan that can be incorporated within Story Time. On the website, ReadWriteThink, there is a lesson plan that consists of activities that contribute to the children’s book, “Amazing Grace”. While completing this lesson, students are able to download “Amazing Grace” onto the Story Time application and complete the provided activities on the iPad.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES : From Fact to Fiction Amazing Grace Discussion

C LASSROOM U SES : The application “Story Time” can be used in the classroom many different ways. For everyday activities in the classroom, 15


The Princess & The Pea

Apps are a great gateway to many opportunities. There are many kinds of apps in the world today for many different areas including; entertainment, education, productivity, social networking, etc. If we learn to use apps correctly and efficiently, we can open up many doors connecting education with technology.



Danielle Germaine attends Central Michigan University; she is junior studying Early Childhood Education. Originally from Maryland however she moved to Michigan and transferred schools to pursue her education further. Danielle hope’s to teach kindergarten when she finishes and earns her degree and eventually return to school to earn her masters degree.

“The Princess and The Pea” app was created by Siena Entertainment LLC. This app is the full version of the classic fairytale, The Princess and the Pea with more modern features. This tool is an online book. This app is designed to immerse children in stories with sights and sounds that feel realistic. This app includes many functions. Text scroll highlights as you read the pages. There are also page indexing to access your favorite parts of the book. The book also always picks up where you left off once exiting the app. You can also read at your own pace with this app if you’re a more advanced reader. There is also a help menu and options to email friends about the app. This app is also enhanced with beautiful illustrations as well as sound effects. This app is compatible with the iphone, ipad and ipod touch and is compatible with ios 4.3 or later. A helpful tip when using the app is when you are reading the story there is an “i” icon at the top left hand side corner. You can click it at any point during the story to change some of the 16

settings; including turning off the background music, turning on and off read along settings, and turning on and off highlighting of the text.

The Princess & The Pea Tutorial

C LASSROOM U SES There are many general benefits of using this app in a classroom setting. A benefit includes saving money by using downloading a free app instead of paying money for a hard copy of a book. Effective integration of technology in a classroom has also seen to increase student engagement. Using apps is a fun way to engage children. Using the Princess and the Pea app in a classroom would be a fun twist on a classic story. The modern version is child friendly with colorful graphics that will entertain the children. Since this app is free everyone is capable of downloading it, or viewing it on a mobile device. A lesson plan I found exciting is an activity exploring the points of view in fairy tales. In this lesson plan, the children will read a story that is familiar to them or well known. Then after reading the story they can write their own version from a different point of view. This helps them use critical thinking and helps them express and create their own ideas. You could use the app in this lesson plan by reading The Princess and The Pea to the children, and letting them view the app and really explore the story. You could also take this a step further and find different versions of the same story to really give the children some options and ideas. You can take this lesson plan even further by possibly even watching a movie version of the fairy tale to show the differences between all the medias This lesson addresses the stage of “applying” from Bloom’s Taxonomy. The stage applying is being used because it requires the children to already have an understanding as well as remem-


bering. Applying includes executing, carrying out, and using already known information.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES ; • Using E Books In The Classroom • Lesson Plan • Literacy Fairy Tale Game



Language Arts:

• Grammaropolis • Poems by Heart • Word Mover




Grammaropolis is an interactive application that makes it fun for children to learn the parts of speech. Very similar to the popular Schoolhouse Rock series, Grammaropolis uses videos and creative examples to work through eight basic parts of speech. These include nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, pronouns, conjunctions, prepositions, and interjections. Each part of speech is separated and each section has definitions and examples that are easy to follow along with. Sections scroll like pages, and the characters used for each different part of speech are fun and whimsical. Videos are placed after every initial section of definitions and examples, and they include songs about the part of speech being covered. Short quizzes follow each subsection, and longer quizzes are periodically placed throughout each section that recap the information that has already been covered. Children are given their answers to the quizzes right away, and they are shown why the answer they chose was right or wrong. At the end of each section, children are awarded with a “seal of completion.� This application is compatible on both iPhone and iPad, but the free version only comes with the section on nouns. Payment options are $1.99 per each other part of speech, or $12.99 for all seven remaining parts of speech plus twenty four quiz categories, sixteen animated shorts, seven music videos, and seven illustrated books. The interface is also available for free online at

A BOUT THE A UTHOR Jaymie Collins is a Junior at Central Michigan University. She has always enjoyed learning, and her love of literature has led her to pursue a focus in English education at the secondary level. Born and raised in Simi Valley, California, she moved to Michigan to attend CMU specifically for the Teacher Education program. She loves reading, writing, and discussing literature, and hopes that one day she will be able to share that love with the future generation.


C LASSROOM U SES Using Grammaropolis in the classroom has many benefits. The interactive parts-of-speech characters are fun and easy for students to remember. Their songs and personal stories make them more relatable to students, which can make it easier for students to remember and apply the parts of speech in their learning. Teachers may use the characters to encourage students to write their own stories about them, or teachers could have students create their own characters that interact with the characters already in the app. This app is a great resource for visual learners, because the parts of speech are given physical forms and personified characteristics. There is an online version of the app, which can encourage students to use it at home, and a series of books based on the app is in the works and set to be released soon.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Grammaropolis Online Online Lesson Plan 1 Online Lesson Plan 2




Poems by Heart

Poems by Heart is an app created by Penguin Classics. It is designed to help learn and memorize poetry from several classic poets. The app comes with two free poems, with additional packs of four available for $0.99 each. The packs are sorted into categories like love poems, adventure, and gothic. It will begin by reciting a poem with either a male or female voice. Then it will break the poem down line by line, taking out key words. The user will have to fill in the blanks from a group of words. After a stanza, the user will receive a score based on the accuracy and speed of their choices. The app will then increase the difficulty by removing more words from each line. After receiving passing a passing score, the user continues. After completing the fifth level of difficulty, the user should know each word of the poem by heart.    Poems by Heart requires iOS 4.3 or later. It is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, and is optimized for iPhone 5.

A BOUT THE AUTHOR My name is Justin Rabineau. I am a junior at Central Michigan University, where I am pursuing a degree in Secondary English Education. I recently transferred from Lake Superior State University. I chose this app, Poems by Heart, with the hope of being able to eventually use it in my classroom.


U SING THE A PPLICATION Poems by Heart is a fun app to learn classic poetry. This is a video tutorial describing how to use the app. Poems by Heart Tutorial

C LASSROOM U SES Using the Poems by Heart app encourages students to read and memorize poetry by creating a game out of memorization. Students’ speed and accuracy results in a higher score, resulting in repeated attempts and increased focus in the hopes of an increased score. The teacher could even offer incentive for the top scores, such as extra credit or candy.    The app only comes with two free poems, but additional poetry packs of four are available for $0.99, sorted under different categories. Have students complete a packet of poems (love, gothic, etc.) the night before, making sure they are familiar with each of the pieces. Ask students why the poems are grouped together, having them compare and contrast elements like imagery and themes. Present two additional poems and have students analyze them, then determine which, if either belongs with the group they’ve read. Be sure to have students cite specific reasons that a poem belongs with a group, like language or rhyme scheme. This makes sure students understand their poems, as well as letting them analyze different elements and apply them to new poems.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Lesson Plan Poems by Heart



Word Mover

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Alison Starzynski is a junior at Central Michigan University. In May of 2013, she completed her Associates in Arts degree at Bay de Noc Community College in Escanaba, Michigan. Now that she has transferred, Alison is working toward a Bachelors degree in Secondary Education and majoring in English. Her minor is English as a Second Language. Alison looks forward to someday teaching English at the high school level. At CMU, Alison is involved in Campus Crusades for Christ (CRU), Council of Future Educators (COFE), and the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).

I NTRODUCTION Word Mover is a free educational iPad app by the National Council of Teachers of English. It is easy to navigate and provides a unique way for students to create “found poetry,” or  poetry with select words or phrases taken from a separate work and revamped to make it their own. It is a great tool for poets of all ages! Each iPad that has the Word Mover app installed can accommodate several users, so multiple students can share if there are limited resources in the classroom.  After creating a username (no password required), poets may choose to take inspiration from “America the Beautiful,” the Gettysburg Address, the “I Have a Dream” speech, or Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18.  Each separate word of the classic works’ are listed in a word bank on the bottom of the screen and can be brought into the new poem in whatever order the “found poet” chooses. In between the words taken from the word bank, the writer may add their own words and place them accordingly on the screen. Words can also be pulled from a general word bank, or  the author can start from scratch and come up with a poem that is all their own, sans word bank.   The title, background, and font of each poem are also customizable to fit with the theme of the poem that is being created. Each new poem is saved automatically on the “My Poems” page, and can be deleted by simply tapping the trash can on the corner of the poem’s thumbnail. In addition, a poem 24

can be shared through email, printed, or saved as a picture on the “Share It!” page.    Word Mover is only compatible with the iPad, probably due to the small word boxes that must be moved around the screen to create the poems.

U SING THE A PPLICATION The video below offers a visual of the Word Mover app and its features, and explains how to maneuver through each option.

C LASSROOM U SES Incorporating Word Mover into any poetry-themed lesson plan would be very beneficial. Having the multiple word banks available to draw inspiration from prevents writer’s block, and being able to customize the appearance of their poetry gets students more excited about their work, especially those who love to be creative. Also, in today’s tech-savvy generation, kids will enjoy--and even feel more comfortable-using technology in school because they are so immersed in it in every other aspect of life. Ask almost any K-12 student and they will probably tell you that writing a poem on an iPad is way more “cool” than doing so on a piece of paper.

How to Use Word Mover

Before exploring the Word Mover app, I encourage teachers to have their students create their own personal word banks of 20-50 nouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs. That way, when they begin to build a poem with Word Mover, they can compare their own list with those provided by the app. If a student finds that a lot of their words were not included in any of the banks in Word Mover, they can keep their own list nearby so they’ll never run low on ideas. Teachers may also want to have an extra word bank available on a handout or poster for their students to see. It could be a list thought up by the teacher or words from more famous works that don’t appear in Word Mover. The more inspiration a student is surrounded by when they sit down to write a poem, the easier it will be for them to get the ball rolling. 25

“Exploring the Power of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Words through Diamante Poetry,” found on, is the perfect example of a lesson plan that can be improved by using the Word Mover app. This lesson teaches students how to choose the most powerful words and phrases possible when constructing a diamante poem, which is a poem structured in the shape of a diamond with contrasting words in each line. First, the class is asked to pull meaningful, contrasting words from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s “I Have a Dream” speech and construct a diamante poem using those. This could easily be done in Word Mover because “I Have a Dream” is one of the famous works available on the home screen, and because the app allows you to arrange the words in whatever position you would like, it’s perfect for building in diamante form.

to this page. It also gives a brief overview of the app and its functions, so it’s a great one-stop site to explore what Word Mover is and how it can be used.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Link 1: MLK Diamante Lesson Plan Link 2:  Overview of App, Lesson Plans for grades K-12


Once the students have gotten the hang of writing a diamante poem, they are asked to make their own with original words on whatever topic they choose. Again, this would be great to do in Word Mover. Students could use the randomized word bank if they are in need of some inspiration, or they could choose to come up with all of the words on their own on the “My Own Words” page, which doesn’t include a word bank. A similar exercise could be done using any of the “Famous Works” poems in Word Mover. The link to the full lesson plan is listed below. provides an entire list of lesson plans, divided up by grade level, that could be supplemented by the Word Mover app. The second link below will take you 26


Word & Letter Recognition

This section focuses on apps that support word and letter recognition



Endless Alphabet

The app she chose to study is Endless Alphabet. This app is engaging and educational for toddlers and early learners. Its colorful artwork and design is great for getting the attention of young minds. It is an interactive app that develops fine motor skills and expands children’s vocabularies through engaging activities. It makes spelling and learning words fun because it is an interactive puzzle with every word. Its talking letters help with recognition of sounds along with a short animation to define the word. Children will be able to determine the meaning of words and build on their own vocabularies. This app will have your children saying words like nosey, and gargantuan before you know it! This app is compatible with Ipods, Ipads, Iphones (etc).

A BOUT THE A UTHOR : Nicole Czehowski is a Junior at Central Michigan University. She is a transfer student from Grand Rapids Community College. She is going into early child development and learning will receive a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. She is passionate about the developmental years of a child’s life. She believes that the developmental years are the most crucial to a child’s success throughout their education.

U SING THE A PPLICATION : Once you choose a word out of the monsters mouth the word is scrambled all over the page leaving only the outline of the word. Now the goal is to put the letters on the right outlines to re-make the word. When you click on the letter it will make the corresponding letter sound while you drag it. Once you are done placing all the letters onto the outline of the word it pronounces the word you spelled. Then a short animation of dancing monsters brings you to the next page where it gives a definition of the word. General Benefits: • Endless Alphabet is easy to use! • This app is great at engaging children because it uses cute monsters. 28

• All the words are organized alphabetically which is nice for focusing on one starting letter. • When spelling a word, the letters make the corresponding letter sound. Which helps them to start recognizing letter sounds. • Endless Alphabet has updates weekly which provides new words for your children. This makes it easy to keep expanding their vocabularies. • This app provides interactive learning for toddlers and early learners. • The early learners will learn reading, spelling, and vocabulary.

Endless ABC tutorial

This short clip will give you a tutorial on the app Endless ABC. Learn how to master the app as a teacher or a parent!

Helpful Hints: • Make sure you update when possible to get new words! • If you're using the app in a noisy area use headphones so you can hear letter sounds, word pronunciations and definitions.

C LASSROOM U SES : Endless Alphabet is an app that can be incorporated into the classroom. Many lesson plans can be shaped to fit along with the Endless ABC app! Students will learn to extend their vocabulary, and literary terms, and start predicting words using the initial letters/ sounds. This will get them into the remembering stage of Bloom’s taxonomy. Once they complete a word in class they would then discuss this word in different settings. This will encourage the students to engage in communication and recall. Discussing the words they just completed on Endless Alphabet will help them make connections to real life situations. Then they could draw their own scenario making an example of a time they used the word in their lives. For example if they did celebrate they could draw their last birthday party scene, and then explain that they were celebrating their birthday. This could be a warm-up for a lesson that is under additional resources. This lesson plan focuses on words starting with the same letter. For instance in this lesson plan they are working with the letter M. In this exercise they make a mystery box with an M label on it. The teacher then places some M&Ms in the mystery box. Now they have to guess what is in the box! After going through all of the guesses they can open the box to find M&Ms. As they eat them they can work 29

on the M sound. Then you would read a book that elaborates on the letter M in many different words. For example Five Little Monkeys Jumping on The Bed. Endless Alphabet could be used as a warm up by having all the children complete the words starting with an M in the app! This is a perfect way to make an easy transition! No wasted time here!

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES : • Lesson Plan • Tutorial on Endless ABC • Review of Endless ABC


I NTRODUCTION Sight Words is a great app that could be used in or outside the classroom. This app allows children to recognize words that are being said. The overall goal of this app is to help children to remember what a word looks like. The app is very simple to use. Before you begin using the app make sure that the volume is on, the app will be useless without volume. After the volume is on you can choose the level of difficulty that you desire. The levels range from preschool to third grade. Once the volume is on and the level has been selected you are ready to start. There will be a voiceover that will say a word, and the players job is to pick the word that is said. If you choose correctly the word will be circled in red, if incorrect it will not be circled. After each round there will be a new word said and a new word waiting to be selected.


Sight Words By Photo Touch

A BOUT THE AUTHOR Emily Sinclair is a Sophomore going into Early Childhood development in Elementary Education. She hopes to teach first grade some day but is open to teaching any age kindergarten to fifth. She does not know what subject that she wants to teach yet but is sure that she will figure it out soon. She is very passionate about learning and is very excited to continue working toward her goal of teaching. EDU 290 is teacher her a great deal about technology. The more that she learns the more she is growing in her knowledge about technology. 



classroom it is a great way to help students test themselves and see what words they can recognize and what ones they are struggling with. The app also can go to different levels in school, if some words are simple for a student then they can change to a higher level and difficulty of words. The app can be used to test students on how much they have retained. 

Sight Words by Photo Touch is a strait forward and easy to use application. The application is a wonderful tool to use in and out of the classroom. The video below will walk you through how to use the application. Follow the video step by step. Sight Words By Photo Touch.

 Lesson Plan. 
 Additional Resources. Read Write Think Sight Words Review

C LASSROOM U SES A lesson plan can easily be made with Sight Words by Photo Touch app. This app is great for individual learning in the 32


See Touch Learn

A BOUT THE A UTHOR Hi, my name is Jared Mervenne and I’m a sophomore here at Central. As of now I am pursuing a career in special education, more specifically secondary education in the autism unit. I was exposed to the special education community at an early age and have been involved ever since. Our next door neighbor for the past 7 years has special needs and we have spent a lot of time with her. Additionally I have been a volunteer at Lincoln Elementary School for the special needs for two years. I find the work very rewarding and fascinating and hope to gain as much knowledge as I can as I continue at Central!

It’s creators specifically designed the app for students diagnosed with autism. It is used by teachers, parents, SLP’s as well as BCBA’s. It provides card instruction created by you and comes with a set of high quality images. Certified behavior analyst have also constructed 60 exercises which are included along with lessons created by others. There is also an abundance of additional images and lessons which can be made available to you by purchase. This app is currently only compatible with the iPad. U SING THE A PPLICATION The application See Touch Learn is a user friendly application for teachers to use with children with autism. See Touch Learn Screencast

I NTRODUCTION See.Touch.Learn is a system of picture cards whose purpose is to replace flash cards.


C LASSROOM U SES The general benefits when using this app are endless. First of all, an app that is this versatile and full of so much developed information that is also free, is huge. When it comes to the technicality of the app, it has been specifically designed and aimed towards children with autism. You have the option to customize, create and edit so much and so many different types of information that there are no boundaries. Different lessons can be constructed based off of different kids learning styles, interest, and the speed at which they learn making it a very flexible app. When it comes to tips regarding the app, I don't really have any. Its very self explanatory and easy to navigate. A lesson that can be adapted to the app is called “What's in the bag?” I feel this lesson would be adaptable because it serves as a good activity for children with autism and causes children to use their analyzing skills as they would in See Touch Learn. The only difference is with “What's in the bag?” you analyze with your sense of touch whereas when using See Touch Learn, use analyze by using your sight. An object is place in a brown bag and the student is not told anything about the object. The only thing they're allowed is just 5 hints, the rest is them describing what they feel until they can name the object.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES • “Whats in the bag?” • Site that supports the use of the app in a classroom • See Touch Learn Tutorial




This section focuses on teaching apps.




Evernote is a Cloud based software and service storage application designed for capturing, organizing, and archiving information. Evernote is designed as a productivity tool centering on the organization of information.

A BOUT THE A UTHOR Christopher Rishko is a Conservation Biology Master’s Candidate student at Central Michigan University also pursuing a Biology Degree with a Secondary Education concentration. After graduation, Chris hopes to teach Biology at the High School level.   Prior to enrolling at CMU, he served 12 years as an officer in the United States Air Force.

The Evernote App is designed as the interface with this cloud based resource. Evernote is designed around a Note, which can be a singular piece of information, website, image, etc. with or without files attached.The app provides a tool for capturing, inputting, and retrieving the stored information.  It allows for users to sync any number of devices to be used online or offline with the service.   Evernote is compatible with most of the devices on the market today, including; iPhone, iPad, iPad touch, windows Phones, Windows 8 (Touch), Android, Blackberry, Web OS, Mac OSX, Windows Desktop.

U SING THE A PPLICATION The tutorial video below is a basic instructional tool for the iOS Evernote application intended to provide a solid foundation for the first-time user of Evernote. Evernote is a fantastic resource for classroom organization. Educators can use it for meeting notes, research, lesson plans, task lists, lesson resources, references, and much more. Stu-


dents can use it to take notes in class, organize their homework, research and projects, and make a list of things to do. Evernote Tutorial

pleted lesson material. The teachers can mark each lesson, as appropriate, and return to the students quickly and efficiently. Smithsonian Climate Change Lesson Plan Evernote is an effective Organizational tool.  It allows for multiple notebooks for lesson plans, resources, task checklists, and things to share. Evernote falls under the organizational portion of the Analyzing activity in Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Evernote in Education Evernote

C LASSROOM U SES The Evernote application is an incredibly user-friendly tool with a multitude of uses. An example of the benefits of Evernote in the classroom can be illustrated using the lesson plan below from the Smithsonian website.  An instructor can use Evernote as an effective to tool to aide in disseminating the material to the students. A Notebook can be set up by the instructor with the files required for completing the lesson and shared with each student.  Each student can then, in turn, share their notebooks with the instructor containing the com-





Quizlet is essentially the modern version of the classic way to study; flashcards. There are three ways to use these self-made flashcards, both on- and offline. Flashcards made on the device are accessible offline and the ability to make more is available offline as well. While online, you can search through Quizlet’s database of cards made by other users on different devices, as well on the website itself. This app is available for iPod touch, iPad and iPhones. This app allows the user to easily create and organized flash cards into sets and allows you to make sets for any subject matter.

A BOUT THE A UTHOR Abigail Schafer is currently a junior at Central Michigan University. She is studying to earn her Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education, majoring in Math with a minor in Geography.  She currently resides in Beal City, Michigan with her family.

The three ways to study the flashcards on the app are: cards, learn and scatter. The cards way to study lets you do the initial studying. It lets you look at the cards and flip them over at will. This allows you to learn the terms and their meanings and connect them. The learn way to study quizzes you on the cards. It gives you the definition of one of the terms and you have to type in the word, spelled correctly. Finally, the scatter way to study is for when you really know the terms and their definitions, it is kind of like the matching part of a test. It gives you all of the terms and their definitions scattered around the screen and your task is to match the words and definitions. Scatter also times you, so as you learn the terms better you can try to better your time and set your own record. Another function of this app is the availability to search the online database of cards made by other users. While connected to the internet, the app allows you to search by keywords or usernames to find a set you want to study.  This app is a good 38

tool to use for assessment and practice for spelling or vocabulary.

U SING THE A PPLICATION Quizlet’s app is fairly easy and straightforward to use, the video below shows the ins and outs of how to create your own flashcards to study. Quizlet Tutorial

and then the whole class can study them at once on separate devices. Another benefit is that the teacher can check how well the students are understanding the flashcards with the learn method and at the end it shows which ones were correct on the first try. With the scatter method, the class can challenge each other for the fastest time.    This app can be used to easily adapt online lesson plans in the everyday classroom. For example, having students make flashcards can teach the rest of the class vocabulary for an upcoming reading assignment. You can create a class, and your students can share their flashcards with the rest of the class and can essentially teach each other. This way the students can show understanding by using their own words to define a word or phrase that is new to them, which makes it easier to understand and remember.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES • Quizlet Website • Lesson Plan adapted for Quizlet • Using Quizlet in the classroom

C LASSROOM U SES This app has many ways it can be beneficial in any classroom. Since this app allows users to study flash cards made by someone else, the teacher can make a set of flashcards before class 39




The application we will be using for our iBook demonstration is Nearpod. This application is free and allows for a highly interactive learning experience between the teacher and the students. With Nearpod, teachers are able to share and create multimedia presentations that can be completely interactive and are stored in the Cloud-based Nearpod Content Tool, which allows for access anywhere that a mobile device and Wi-Fi is available. When in the classroom, the teacher is able to share the created multimedia presentations with the students and be in complete control of the activity at hand using the Nearpod app. Students can obtain the content for their activities and submit responses to questions asked directly from their mobile devices or any web-browsers supported by PC or Mac. A teacher, however, must download Nearpod on an iPad or use a web browser to be able to log in as a teacher. Throughout these activities, teachers are able to monitor their student’s results either as individuals or aggregately. This app is a great tool for furthering productivity, providing immediate feedback of results, and creating presentations that are much more interactive.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Jared McNally is a student at Central Michigan University. He intends on obtaining a B.S. in Secondary Education with a major in Social Studies with a Political Science concentration and a minor in History. Jared has a preference to teach at the high school level and help to show his students the power of a positive mental attitude, optimism, constant progression, and motivation. These are concepts in which he hopes to instill in his lesson plans along with required curriculum.


U SING THE A PPLICATION The video below will demonstrate the ease of use and flexibility Nearpod has to offer. Nearpod Demonstration Video

feedback on any of the different types of interactive slides. Students are required to log into Nearpod, so their interactive learning session is monitored. Nearpod also has a neat feature that will let teachers know when a student is dormant in the presentation session. To be completely honest I did not really have too much trouble while using this application. The most difficult part of Nearpod, if any, is creating your own multimedia presentations; but even this is a breeze if you just follow the tutorials. One of my favorite aspects of Nearpod, is the tutorials on using their products. Two tips for those who are about to embark on the Nearpod app would be to follow the tutorials and use the most up to date version. It always helps to get a good feel for an app before using it!

C LASSROOM U SES Nearpod has countless benefits. This application allows for cooperative learning between students, and between students and teachers. The multiple styles of interactive slides allow teachers to educate through different learning styles. Teachers can get feedback on the assignment through polls and surveys. This application also allows students to receive immediate

Nearpod can be adopted to the lesson plan in the following link easily and it will actually enhance the ease and experience. The entire lesson plan can be created by the teacher and uploaded to Nearpod. All of the multimedia and handouts that the students need for this lesson plan can be passed out to them electronically through Nearpod. This not only adds ease, but it is also eco-friendly. For example, the teacher could make a slide with a link to the Kanye West song on Youtube. Students now have the ability to listen to the chorus multiple times at their own pace so they can further analyze the words. The research that is required of the students is already available at the tip of their fingers due to immediate internet access on the device being used. The teacher could incorporate slides which allow for free text so students can formulate their 41

thoughts before they are discussed, and the teacher is able to read what the students write in case some of them do not want to speak out loud. Polls and small quizzes could be added to make sure the students are actively involved and not just going through the motions. A poll could also be used for the students to rate how they felt about this specific lesson plan. This way the teacher can alter the presentation to fit it better to his or her classroom next time.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Lesson Plan How Nearpod Brought Interactive Learning to My Classroom Nearpod’s Website




Nearpod 2

NearPod is an application that allows teachers to utilize their students’ devices by opening powerpoint-style presentations simultaneously, that students can follow along with. This application is specifically designed to enhance the productivity in a classroom by keeping students on task and making in-class assignments and responses faster and easier.

A BOUT THE A UTHOR Sarah is a student of Central Michigan University striving to be a secondary mathematics educator. She is also studying for a minor in speech. Sarah would like to use her degree to help middle and high school students find their passion for learning.

NearPod has a website to create your own presentations, or purchase others’, that will save to your Library. Aside from the website, the application lets you access the Library and open a presentation on your classroom’s available devices. The student’s are able to follow along and interact with their device as the teacher instructs.
 During creation of a presentation, there are many options to choose from that will give students hands-on learning. From drawing on the presentation, to taking a mid-presentation quiz, NearPod tools let the instructor be creative and innovative while designing their slides. This application is compatible with most all Apple products including the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.

C LASSROOM U SES This app works extremely well in the classroom because it lets students either go at their own pace, or follow along with minimal distraction. When submitting responses to a question in class, NearPod lets students remain anonymous, thus creating less fear of participation. Also, NearPod can make grading a 43

bit easier for teachers because all of the answers are automatically sent to the teacher’s interface. The only real trick to using NearPod is to understand the differences between the application and the website. In Teacher View, the application is also an online function that you use from your computer, but it accesses your students devices. The website,, is meant more for creating your own presentations. Lesson plans can be easily adapted to fit NearPod by letting students experiment through their device. For instance, in the Lesson Plan created by Project Maths, when finding the solution to a math problem, you may let the students use a “Draw It” slide to write out their work. This work will be submitted directly to the teachers computer, allowing them to assess the image. The large variety of slides that are available to teachers through this application will help students interact with the lesson.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES This is a good slideshow review of NearPod in your classroom. Also, here is a nice screencast of NearPod!



Common Core

A BOUT THE A UTHOR The author of this book is Bethany Bell. During the creation of this book she was attending Central Michigan University to get a bachelors degree in secondary education science while majoring in English and was undecided about her minor but thinking about History or German as possibilities. She would like to teach any of the grades the secondary degree will allow (seventh through twelfth) because she believes these are crucial years of influence for students and that they can use educational direction. She was also involved in club volleyball at CMU and has a goal of coaching at the school she will be employed at in the future.

I NTRODUCTION The application I chose was Common Core. This application shows all of the standards for the ‘common core’ subjects taught in schools. The application has five categories for subjects which include traditional math, integrated math, language arts, history/social studies and science. Each subject show the specific requirements for each grade level. Also, in each of these ‘core’ subjects, there are different subcategories that are separated in units of ten. For example, in the language arts category for any grade, language arts is narrowed into segments such as writing, reading informational text and speaking and listening. Under each of those categories are more specific points within, for example, writing that they need to learn. Each subcategory has ten of these specific skills that need to be learned in that grade. A couple for the example of the subcategory ‘writing’ are “10.1: write arguments to support claims in an analysis or substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.” Then it goes on to explain exactly what is meant by this. The application will work for Ipod 4, 4s, and 5, Ipads and Androids.


U SING THE A PPLICATION This is a tutorial video showing how to use the application step by step. Common Core Application Tutorial

C LASSROOM U SES Using the common core application in the classroom would be incredibly beneficial for both the teacher and the students. The teacher, by law, is required to use these fundamental educational objectives in their lesson plans and it will help them

to be reminded of the purpose of their lessons every time they see the app on their phone or ipad. Also, if the students know the objective before starting a lesson they can focus better on what the purpose is which allows the teacher to be creative and make the lesson fun without worrying that the students will disregard what the point is. The application is also helpful because it covers every ‘core’ subject so teachers can use it in multiple classes even if they are different subjects. One tip for using the application is to follow its order of what is to be learned because they build off of each other. Also if you are making a lesson plan or a power point and want to see the application for quick reference or to copy and paste it, you can drag it to the side of your screen and it will stay on whatever page you go to until you move it back. There is a search bar to help you find information faster. This application only comes in English. In an online lesson that can be found at this site, Learn NC, the common core application could be used to enhance the students learning experience. The lesson is for students to list the parts of a recipe and then go through a recipe as a class, listing things they forgot to list before. This helps them to understand the vocabulary and where to find information in the recipes. After going through a recipe as a class and identifying the places to find specific information and how to decode it, the teacher gives each student a worksheet to complete on their own with multiple recipes and questions about the recipes afterward. An example of the questions would be asking how much time the recipe will take to complete, which requires the 46

students to recall information and look back at the parts of the recipe dealing with time. These kinds of questions are what make this lesson the first level of Bloom’s Taxonomy, which is remembering. They are simply taking important information and writing it down, with a right and wrong answer. The common core application would be useful to a teacher using this lesson because they could specify what the students are suppose to be focusing on and learning. Some students may ‘check out’ and think it is not important because it is a recipe but really they are learning to find information and be able to answer questions about that information which is very important in education. The recipes are the teachers way of making the lesson more interesting and relate to real life situations. If they saw the common core standard they were applying by doing the lesson they may be able to focus more and understand how beneficial it will be to their education.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Common Core Standards 11 Tech Tools to Teach the Common Core Standards





Socrative is an interactive app that can be used on most mobile devices. Socrative provides a way of integrating technology into in-class evaluations.  On the homepage of their website they state the basic function of their app, “Socrative is a smart student response system that empowers teachers to engage their classrooms through a series of educational exercises and games via smartphones, laptops, and tablets” (Socrative).  In the app teachers can design quick but efficient ways to evaluate their students in class such as multiple choice quizzes, true or false questions, and short answer quizzes.  Additionally Socrative can be used to take polls in the classroom and be used as an exit ticket activity.  These quizzes are automatically graded by the app based on the answers imported by the teacher before the quiz.  Lastly, Socrative can be used as a collaborative app.  It has a game feature in which students are put in groups and race to finish quizzes but have to be proficient in the content covered.  .

A BOUT T HE A UTHOR Colin Heffernan is currently a freshman at Central Michigan University. He was born in raised in Cleveland, Ohio and attended an all boys Catholic high school, St. Edward High School, on the west side of Cleveland.  Additionally he is entering his first season on the CMU wrestling team in which he will be redshirting.  He plans to major in secondary education in the areas of history and social studies.  Heffernan is currently enrolled in a technology in education class and firmly believes in the integrated use of technology in the classroom.  Additionally he believes in mixing traditional methods of teaching with technology to maximize learning in the classroom.  

U SING THE A PPLICATION This video will give the reader a basic walkthrough on how to use the Socrative application. It highlights the interactive quizzes, polls, and exit ticket features of the


app. The viewer should walk away from the video being to use the app efficiently. Socrative: A Basic Walkthrough of the interactive application

dents are having trouble and need extra help through the exit ticket feature of the app. In the lesson plan “Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird: Profiles in Courage” found on students are asked to read Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird”.  In addition students are asked to learn about the historical context of the story and how it applies to the society in that time.  What Socrative can help do is, give quick efficient quizzes at the beginning of class on the reading the students were required to do for the previous night.  Additionally teachers can use the exit ticket and poll features of the app to check in at the end of the class to see if the students are understanding the historical content being taught in class that day.  A brief walkthrough on how to use the app can be found online on the socrative website along with the online versions of the app. Here teachers and students are able to have the full use of the app from a computer. Additional Resources

C LASSROOM U SES Socrative presents educators with great new innovative way to evaluate students everyday in the classroom. Educators are able to give quick efficient quizzes to check in on what information their students are actually retaining.  Additionally teachers can see which stu-

• Lesson Plan • Walkthrough • Online Version of App




This section contains information about apps that support creativity.




The app allows you to upload your pictures and videos into a “style.” These styles are the different kinds of backgrounds and borders which your pictures and videos are displayed on. They have tons of styles, so that the theme can match the pictures. You can make 30 second videos of any style for free, but to make longer videos there is a list of pricing If you are making a video on your ipod or smartphone you can only select up to 12 photos before they ask you to upgrade.    The best part of this app is it allows you to take a bunch of pictures and make it look like a scrapbook in a video style. It is way easier and efficient that making an actual scrapbook. You send it to people and they download it, boom done. If you go on a family trip its easy to share the pictures in a neat way with grandparents, aunts and uncles. Another great plus for this app, is that it’s compatible with both the ipod, ipad, and android smartphones and tablets.

A BOUT THE A UTHOR I, Thomas Webster, am aspiring to become a math teacher at the middle school level. I’ve been brought up by educators and always find myself in a classroom. A reason I would like to teach at the middle school level is because kids start to think on their own and start constructing their own ideas. Middle school kids compared to high school kids are much more enthusiastic and want to impress their teacher. Last year I was hired as a long term sub and taught in both High School and Middle School classes, I preferred Middle School. The application I’ve chosen is called “Animoto.” The basic idea of the app is to create your own personal videos using pictures, video clips, music and text.

U SING THE A PPLICATION Animoto is a simple and fun app that allows you to create a video slideshow using your own photos and videos. This video is a basic how to use animoto. The video starts from the beginning (downloading the app) and ends with a screenshot of a finished video.


How to Use Animoto

C LASSROOM U SES Animoto is a great tool to use in the classroom because it is a fun app and allows students to explain in a creative way what they are learning. You can give students a basic idea such as, find and take pictures of insects. The students can then go outside snap photos of insects and add text to the pictures to give the views information about the insects. It’s an interactive and fun way to get the students to learn and gives the teacher feedback. For example if students return with pictures of their

dog, as a teacher you might want to go back over what an insect is.    One problem with animoto is that it is limiting. It only allows 30 videos and only 12 pictures per video before you have to upgrade. A way around this would be for the teacher to upgrade the app and have all the students use the teachers account to sign in when using the app. This would help the teacher because wherever the teacher is he/she can open the app and all the students projects would be accessible.     An assignment to bring into the classroom is writing Haiku. Matthew Cheney believes that a Haiku should be in the present and have emotion in it. The way this works with Animoto is the students can capture an image, their moment, the inspiration to their haiku and use those photos in their video to make their haiku. Lesson Plan for Haikus This app fits in with Blooms idea of creating. The students are producing their own videos for a given assignment. They have to work within a structure but each student can design their video any way they would like. This would blend in with the “Nonlinguistic Representation” strategy by Marzano. I say this because it allows students to explain their knowledge using imagery. This process helps the students but it also allows the teacher feedback on what the students are learning. This is crucial to make sure the students are grasping the main ideas of whatever the assignment is.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Animoto - Homepage to Animoto where you can create videos on a web browser. 52

Animoto (Classroom) - This page is by animoto and explains why and how to use in the classroom. RWT-Animoto - This page is by “Read Write Think� explaining how and why Animoto is useful in the classroom.





The app I have chosen is called “Skitch�. It is linked with Evernote, and is available on iPhone, iPod, and iPad. It allows the user to draw on a picture, map, or start from blank to relay information. Skitch is a functionality app, as it helps to show information in a timely manner across iDevices.


My name is Rebekah Delugach. I am a sophomore at Central Michigan University. My intention is to be an elementary school teacher. My minors are reading and integrated sciences. The age group I would love to teach most is kindergarten. That age group is very energetic and they love life and I can really draw on that to make school a very exciting experience for them, hopefully instilling a lifelong love of learning.

M OVIE 5.1 How to use the app


This app has six ways to convey knowledge. The first way is the “Take a Photo” option. To use this, simply tap the prompt and wait for the camera to come up. Then, set the flash to auto (which means the camera will decide if flash is needed), on (camera will flash), or off (camera will not flash). Once you have adjusted the flash setting, you can focus the image by tapping on the area that needs to be most in focus. The whole picture should be in focus, however, by tapping the screen in the area needed, that will for certain be sharp. To take the picture, press the button in the middle of the bottom of the screen. It is a large grey button. From there, choose either to retake the photo, which will take you back to the camera, or to use the picture, taking you to the screen in which edits are done. The second way to use this app is the “Choose a Photo” option. This needs access to your photos, so tap “allow”. If the user accidentally pressed “don’t allow”, they can go into their settings and then privacy, then photos, and finally tap the slide button next to Skitch. This allows the app to access the user’s photos. After the user has chosen a picture, they can edit it with the many ways shown a few paragraphs below. The third way to enjoy the app is to “Create from PDF”. For this, the user will need Evernote, another app that is very functional. From there, open a PDF and edit from there. Another way to use the application is to edit from a map. To do this, click that option, then go on the map to the place needed. When the required area is shown, tap “Snap” to take a picture of the map, then edit as needed.

The fifth option is to “Start from Blank”. This allows the user to draw anything and save it. The last option is to “Create from Web”. When this is pressed, it takes you to a page with the Skitch logo and says to insert a web address. From there, when the user finds something they like, they take a snapshot with the phone icon in the upper righthand corner. Again, edits take place from there. To edit an image (this works for all edits in Skitch), tap the pink arrow on the right hand side. A sidebar will come out from the side, allowing for options to be pressed. The first option, an arrow, allows arrows to be drawn on the picture. You can choose the color you would like it to be as well. The slide bar on the far right changes the thickness of the arrow (and any other edits done to the picture). To return to the photo, tap the arrow and the sidebar will be hidden once more. The “a” allows for text insert onto the photo, select the color and again, and the sidebar should hide on its own. From there, tap on the picture where you want the text to be. The keyboard should come up, allowing the user to write what they want to say. The third edit option is a circle with a carat coming off the side. This brings up five more options that are the same as the caret-circle. They are a red one with an x in it, an orange with an exclamation point, blue with a question mark, green with a check mark, and pink with a heart. Select one and place on the photo. Then, the user has an option to decide where the caret goes, as to point to specific information that needs attention. The highlighter allows for highlighting and the “a” over the 55

highlighted means send to back of text. The user can also change the size and location of the highlighting by tapping on it and scaling it by dragging it. The next option, the square, allows the user to box the information they want attention paid to. There are different shape options. Again, they can be scaled by the same process of tapping it. The next option is a blur option. Select this and then select what in the picture needs not be seen. Do this by starting at one point on the picture and dragging your finger over what needs to be blurred. a grey transparent box will appear, then the part of the image selected will blur. The next and final option is crop. Select what is needed in the picture, and do the same as in the blur portion. That part of the picture will only be seen after that. Once an image has been cropped, Skitch will go back to the last used tool. If at any point a stray or unwanted change was made, just tap the undo button at the bottom left of the screen. To save the final draft of the image, click the button with a box and an arrow coming out of the box. This will give you the options to “Create Public Link”, “Email”, or add to “Camera Roll” or “Cancel”.





Toontastic is an interactive story telling app, making the creation of a cartoon as easy as putting on a puppet show! The simple and easy to follow instructions make it possible for kids to tell their own stories in a coherent beginning to end way. Not only do they get to show off their creativity to friends, family and classmates, but they also get to learn about the structure of storytelling.  The app’s simple beginning, middle and ending set up makes it clear for children to understand the basics of a story, that will guide them to a broader understanding that will enable them to express their own ideas more uniquely.

A BOUT THE A UTHOR JoLee Greer’s interest in Education started when she attended her third Elementary School. The wide range of differences between the schools made her question the education system. Years later after graduating high school and volunteering at a book event for children, she finally decided to pursue education as a career. Although making her main focus in Secondary, she strives to change education in all levels across the country. She has a strong belief in free-thinking education with less government mandated testing, as well as other ideas to help improve the classroom. She one day hopes to make a difference in her country and a difference in children’s lives.

Toontastic has many different versions of it, including Toontastic: Pirate Edition. In this edition, children have a variety of choices for a beginning, middle and ending scene involving pirates. Each scene is simple with a character interactions and sounds instead of words. The child then has the opportunity to fill in what happens after each scene, by moving the characters with their fingers and recording their voice. After all the scenes are over, the child gets to name the cartoon and put their name on it. The cartoon is then available to share and watch! Compatibility (iPod, iPad, both).


U SING THE A PPLICATION Choose your scenes. You’ll have a wide selection of different beginnings, middles and endings that have already been premade. After each scene, you put in what happens next! Move the characters around with your fingers, and speak for them! The device will record it all for you!

C LASSROOM U SES Toontastic is a type of story-telling app. Ideal for Language Art classes and other classes where telling a story will help the children learn better.

Choose music that goes along with it! You have a variety of background music that portrays a certain emotion. Name the video and put your name on it Watch it and share!

M OVIE 5.2 Using Toontastic




Users record music or speech over the pictures, then send the slideshow to their friends and family using social media. The app also allows recipients to save the slideshow to their computers or  mobile devices. This app is compatible for both the iPhone and the iPad.

U SING THE A PPLICATION The video below will demonstrate how to use the app.

A BOUT THE A UTHORS My name is Christina Fisher and I am currently an undergraduate at Central Michigan University.I am interested in teaching secondary education, more specifically a foreign language. I am currently studying Spanish and hope to share my love for the language with the youth of America. Learning a foreign language not only helps children develop cognitively but socially as well. Also giving a student an advantage of becoming culturally educated.

M OVIE 5.3 PixnTell

I NTRODUCTION Pixntell is an app used for the sole purpose of creation, therefore allowing users to create slideshows of pictures from their photo album on their mobile device or from taking pictures around them. 59

C LASSROOM U SES Students are able to create slideshows to articulate classroom rules and procedures. The class can brainstorm the procedures they have practiced throughout the week. Each student  can then take a picture of the action and give a brief explanation of what is occurring. This is a great way to reinforce classroom policies in a fun, creative way. The app also has the benefit of documenting classroom activities to be shared at parent teacher conferences and open houses. This allows parents to see first hand what is going on in the classroom and give the children something to be proud of.



Interactive Whiteboards

This chapter contains information about interactive whiteboard apps.




The app being reviewed in this section is called Educreations for the Apple IPad and on the computer with some limited functions. The creators hope to eventually branch out to other platforms such as Android and maybe the Kindle.  The app was made by two engineers, Wade Roberts and Chris Streeter.  Chris graduated from UC Berkeley in California with a bachelors in Computer Science. “Education is an area that I’m extremely passionate about.. I was passionate enough to start a company making educational software for teachers and students (Educreations).”

A BOUT THE AUTHOR Kevin Hess a Sophomore at Central Michigan University is majoring in Secondary Special Education. He is the author of this particular section. He hopes to be teaching high school math and history to children with special needs.  He is also an Eagle Scout who in his free time still attends meetings of his troop. This is where his passion for teaching sprouted from. He was often charged with advancing younger scouts and teaching them skills required to do so.

U SING THE A PPLICATION Well enough about about the creators what about the app? The app when opened looks like a whiteboard that you can write on but it is more than that. as you dig deeper into it you find that you can add pictures and text.  Then to accompany that you can add your voice using the record function in the corner of the screen. So with the combinations of these it allows you to do a whole lesson plan on your IPad or on the computer but know that if you do it on the computer you cannot add text.  Once you have the slides complete with pictures and other graphics push record and talk through it while using the whiteboard part to show work, emphasis something, put arrows on something.  Then once you complete it you can save it and then share it with students and even other teachers.  So this allows you to give a lesson for the day to a student who is home sick and can't make it to school. 62

This app is very user-friendly nothing is hard to use or understand only thing might be a good idea is to invest in a stylus they're very inexpensive and it can allow students be able to read your work a lot easier. A brief instructional guide to Educreations

are sick or missing the class doesn't mean that they can't have a full lesson and with the advent of Skype and FaceTime you can actually answer questions that students might have. This app is very user-friendly nothing is hard to use or understand only thing I might say is to invest in a stylus they're very inexpensive and it can allow students be able to read your work a lot easier.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES With this app you can have students make a whole lesson plan for a section of the chapter. On it details a whole lesson plan on how this can be achieved.  The site describes step-by-step how the project is achieved.  It explains what students will have to do to achieve this.  Students are required to research the topic then with information gathered they have to create an Educreations presentation using the app to record sound to get to go along with the slides they make. this is the main website for the app. this is where students can access the lesson even if they don’t have an IPad.

C LASSROOM U SES Some of the benefits to using Educreations in the classroom is that you can use it as a virtual whiteboard. But you can do so much more than that, it allows you to make whole lessons. For example if a student is sick we can still get a lesson thanks to the website that accompanies the app.  Also just because you 63


Whiteboard Lite

A BOUT T HE A UTHOR    My name is Brandon Hull and I am studying History with the hopes of becoming a High School History teacher. I was born and raised in a fairly small town known as St. Johns in Michigan, and I come from a small family consisting of my parents Mark and Judy, my brother Josh, and me. I graduated from St. Johns High School in 2010 where I started out at Lansing Community College just to get my basic classes done until I figured out what I really wanted to do with my life. I decided on teaching because I have had many great teachers in my past and I just wanted to give back and make a difference in a student’s life, just like the great teachers in my past.

I NTRODUCTION    The application I decided to take a look at is called Whiteboard Lite created by GreenGar Studios. The app is a typical whiteboard app concept, where the user can draw with various colors and marker sizes on a blank white background, and erase or clear completely what they have drawn. The user can also choose the opacity and width of both the marker and eraser; they also give the user the ability to have three separate colors, opacity, and width allowing them ease of access to different colors. The app also lets its users upload pictures from their device to write on and then they have a save option where the user can either save their project to the device or even upload it to Facebook. This application is compatible with both the IPod Touch and the IPad as well, though on my IPod touch I found the app to be a bit slower at times when it came to drawing with a bigger width or erasing with a bigger eraser.


U SING THE A PPLICATION Whiteboard Lite is a fun and easy to use application, the video below will show you how to use the application.

Using Whiteboard

C LASSROOM U SES Some of the general benefits of using whiteboard lite in the classroom would be the ability of having a whiteboard that doesn’t require any markers or any erasers. Another big added benefit would be the ability to collaborate with colleagues and draw out ideas on the board and be able to save their ideas to the users device. The teacher can also use the application with his

or hers students, provided that the classroom has access to iPads, to do a classroom collaboration where students can share their ideas on the app. In reality the only limitation on the in class use of this application is set by the limits of the teacher’s imagination. Though the App is very useful I noticed a few bugs or glitches when trying out the different settings. For instance I noticed when using the maximum width size for both the eraser and marker, there was a bit of lag time when drawing and it load slower than if I were using a different size. My greatest suggestion would be to use an average width size that way the app doesn’t become overloaded, slow down and cause lag time. Sometimes switching between settings may cause some lag time as well, just be patient and give it more time. The lag time was the biggest problem that I could see, but i feel that patients and using smaller settings can easily fix this problem when using the app. This app really could be incorporated in almost any lesson plan, for instance here is a lesson plan for a history class involving World War II and the Pacific. The teacher could use the app to make a rough sketch of Japan and show where some of the major battles took place, and also show where the US advanced into and took over. If the classroom is equipped with iPads, 65

the teacher could also break the class into groups to decide an opinion on whether or not the use of the Atomic bomb was necessary, then the students could put their thoughts onto the app, with a private whiteboard just for class discussion. I think this app falls under the evaluating of Boom’s, basically because the students will be recording and evaluating information with the use of this app. A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES • Discovery Education • Appitic






Andrew Heinz and is studying teacher education at Central Michigan University. Plans to teach in the field of math at the secondary level. He currently is completing his sophomore year. He choses to study math because he thinks he can bring it to a subject of wanting to be done rather than one students fear. He has a great understanding of it and he feels he can help take my knowledge and give it to my students.

 The functions of this app are plenty.  It has 3 main tools right when you open the app. There is a pen, a marker, a thicker marker, and an eraser. Each utensil has a sizing function and each writing utensil has color options. There is a option to upload an image to your background, say like a math worksheet, that allows you to write on it. Then there is a clear all button you can hold to erase all the markings you had made. You can also swipe two fingers down on the screen and a new blank page will appear.

U SING THE A PPLICATION The video below will demonstrate how to use Screenchomp.

M OVIE 6.1 Screenchomp

I NTRODUCTION The app I have is called "Screenchomp". It is a app used to interact with your smart board and make it easy to share videos, your creations, or anything at all. It is made specifically for the ipad. This is a interactive whiteboard app.


C LASSROOM U SES ScreenChomp allows you to write, draw, and insert images on its interface. Then after there is an option to record a voiceover to your images. It be a great way to spell and use correct grammar. With the recording tool, you can draw and speak at the same time. So to teach the students how to spell the word, photosynthesis, you can write each letter as you say it. Then when you finish writing and spelling the word out, say the completed word and it re enforces everything you just wrote out. Then, after you do it yourself allow students to do it themselves. The student listening to you say each letter and see it written is two times the amount being taught to them. Then the child can try to regurgitate it back to you by trying themselves. So, press the record button. As your saying every letter, write it letter with it. After you complete the spelling say the full word for the students. Then, let a few kids try it for themselves.

Additional Resources: • Using Screenchomp to Learn Phonics • How to Use Screenchomp for Dummies • How to Use Screenchomp

Screenchomp in the classroom has many advantages to it. It can spread across of the many subjects taught in the school systems. For math, you can easily show how to write out expressions or formulas, while you speak out loud how to use them. For history, it makes it easy to show specific places on a map where important events took place. For language arts, you can show how to spell words out and how to correctly read them. Science can benefit from this app as well. It can allow how to correctly place elements together to make a compound. The recording voice over and ability to draw on a picture makes it simple to emphasize important points. 68


Social Studies

This section focuses on social studies apps.




This Special Educations app, designed by AssistiveWare and N2Y, is weekly  newspapers to help beginning readers and students with special needs. Every week students get the chance to connect with the world through short articles that have symbol-support, puzzles, games, recipes, jokes, and much more. The goal of this app is to help strengthen literacy skills. Students with just basic awareness of symbols and print will be able to read and comprehend each article. Each article can be read sentence by sentence highlighting the word as its being said using text to speech. This app can be used with more then one student with each student getting his or her own settings. Progress of students can be tracked and scores kept. Each week a new article comes out but needs to be purchased for just a $1.99.  This app is only compatible with iPads at this time.

A BOUT T HE A UTHOR My name is Amy Quinlan I am a sophomore at Central Michigan University. I am working to get my degree in Special Education with a minor in mathematics and leadership. I hope to work with elementary school children, helping them work with their disabilities so they can move forward with their lives and not get held back by their disabilities.

U SING THE A PPLICATION There are a lot of great benefits that come along with using the News-2-You app. It is great for any special education classroom, which may have students at different reading levels. Students who still cannot fully read by themselves have the option to have the app read the articles to them. As the article is read sentences are highlighted and words are underlined. This helps the students stay engaged with the reading and helps them get a better understanding of what is being read. There are also pictures underneath each word to help the kids understand the meaning of each word. A great part of this app is teachers can have specific accounts for each student. They can 70

monitor how difficult the readings are and also keep up with the answers the students give to the think, and review sections. These answers will show how much of the article the students really comprehended correctly. Overall this app is a big benefit to any special educations class it helps students improve  their reading skills and also helps them get to know what is going on in the world around them.There have been no real problems that have come about with this app so far, however being such a new app problems may come about soon. The only problem that people may find a little irritating is that even though there is a zoom button and people can tap

How to Use News-2-You

on the screen the app does not really let you zoom in on the text.

C LASSROOM U SES This app can be used in many lesson plans with all the different topics the articles cover over the year. One lesson plan is specific for News-2-You but not the app version just the website and smart board uses. The lesson plan is pretty much the same the only difference is that the children do not have access to the videos at the end of the articles. So the class is broken up into two groups. The first group of students will read / listen to the article and then discuss the information in the article. They also will talk about how this news read in the article affects the child's own life. Group two goes to the recipe of the week and the children work on their reading, measuring, and little bit of house skills. Both groups can come back together and discuss with the other group what they have learned from their work. From Blooms levels this lesson plan works a lot with the understanding and analysing levels.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Here are a couple websites for some extra help. News-2-You is not only for I-Pods it is also for SmartBoards and much more. The website n2y has a lot of great resources. Making a Difference is a great place to look for great app lesson plans. Digital Wish is a great website that has lots of great lesson plans for any teachers to use and is where the above les71


The States

ABOUT THE AUTHOR As an avid app user, it is easy to see the benefits of using electronics such as ipads in the classroom. Caylie McMath is a junior at Central Michigan University and is planning to be an elementary school teacher, preferably teaching the fifth grade. Her intended major is in science, but she believes it is necessary to be well-versed in all areas of study. She has already been to classrooms to observe and through her observations has seen the potential for greatness if schools could implement the use of applications in the classroom. She has studied the usefulness of an app called The States which is explained below.

INTRODUCTION The States is an app that is designed only for ipads, but is very informative and straightforward. This app is more in the social studies subject area, however the design and interactive abilities are commendable, and would be helpful in any classroom. This app can be used to explore the design of our country, from the original thirteen colonies to the fifty states of today. Students can click on specific centuries to see the states that were part of the country then. From there they can pick a specific year if they wish, or they can choose a specific state. After clicking on the state they are able to read details about it, such as when it became a state, the state population and other interesting facts. Students are also able to view every presidential election and their details. Should they choose to click on the election of 2008 they will see who ran, who got how many votes, even the electoral maps! This is a free app and doesn’t require internet connection to use. 
 The content is very informative, however it is the set up that is absolutely ingenious. The interactiveness of this app will encourage kids to really get to know it. Most kids enjoy clicking things or pressing buttons. However, on many apps there is a limited amount you can get into. In The States there are always different places to go and the information is so in depth that it won’t take a short amount of time to get through it all. This is also an app that could be used both for fun free time in the classroom or the teacher could make an assignment out of it, perhaps a scavenger hunt for information. Using this app as a scavenger hunt will teach the students not 72

only the information but how to navigate deeper and deeper into an app without getting confused. This app will be more for the older children, third grade and up, but that is only based on the information. This type of design is compatible with any age group. USING THE APPLICATION The States is a straight forward and easy to use application. The video below will demonstrate how to use this app in a way that will help you implement it in the classroom. How To Use The States

CLASSROOM USES The general benefits of using this app in the classroom is that it is a hands on way to learn about the states. Most classrooms have large pull-down maps and will show how the states were added and when by pointing it out on the large map. This app makes understanding that a lot easier because it’s right in front of the student and it’s interactive. The student can pick specific dates and see what states were in the union at that time, and which ones were in the process of becoming states. This is also beneficial because it shows the elections for every year that this country has had them, and it gives details. It shows the people who are running, their running mates, the popular vote percentage, the electoral votes they each got and even shows the electoral map. This makes it much more interesting to learn about the politics for young children because it is a lot more interactive. Lastly, this is beneficial because students can click on specific states and find statistics about that state such as when it was established, the land area and the total population. The interesting part of that is the the population changes as you click on different years so the students can see the population fluxuations in certain areas of the united states. Some tips for using this app are to make sure you are in the right era. Sometimes if you drag your hand across the screen, it will accidentally bump the banner at the bottom which will change the year you are accessing. Make sure you double check to make sure you are in the proper time. 73

To use this app in the lesson plan “Go West: Imagining the Oregon Trail” first you want to make sure the app is in the right time era. Click the date icon until it is in the 1800’s and view the states that are established, and which territories are up and coming. Using this information and being able to see it visually will give the students the base idea of what they will be leaving behind as they begin to journey the oregon trail. Creating a story about a trip is something that this app will not be as helpful for because that is more creativity based than using an interactive application. But exploring the trail with visual resources is the second part of that lesson and it will be a lot easier to visually see what is happening as the kids travel from year to year. They can watch as they move farther west, what continues to happen back east with the elections and what states are being established. This app is only one visual resource they could use but it also the most interactive one and that is why it will be beneficial. Reliving the pioneers experience and telling a story with pictures are also two parts of the lesson that won’t need the use of the app directly, however they knowledge that was gained while using it will help the kids when they do this part. The level of Bloom’s Taxonomy that this entails is analyzing. This is because the students will always be comparing what they are learning to what they is true today like the methods of travel, the population sizes, the lifestyles, etc. They will also be structuring and integrating what they learn while looking at the maps and using the app to take the journey into the stories and final presentations of work that come at the end of the lesson. This not only teaches

students the information about the Oregon Trail but it teaches them how to analyze that information as well. Lesson Plan ADDITIONAL RESOURCES Technology In Social Studies




13 Colonies

A BOUT THE AUTHOR Jessica Anderson is a current student at Central Michigan University. She transferred from Lansing Community College; she spent three years there gaining her associates in general education. She is studying elementary education, with a major and a double minor. Her major is social studies, with a history concentration and her double minor is language arts and middle level education. Earning that middle level education minor makes her more eligible to teach fifth through ninth grade. She spent a full year (September 2012-May 2013) working in a third grade classroom. Jessica’s love for education grew everyday she worked with those students.

The app is a social studies app named the thirteen colonies. It is an interactive app that allows people to look at each colony individually. Along with learning about each colony you also learn the chronological series of events that it took for the pioneers to journey their way from England. Lastly you learn about the daily life of the settlers during the colonial time period. 
 This is an social studies application that it think could be used either in elementary or secondary education. It could give elementary students a nice preview on what they will learn in later grades, and it could be used as a nice resource for students in the secondary grade levels.
 There are three different sections within this app. There is the chronology section, about the Colonies section and the daily life section. In the chronology section, there are twentyseven links that lead you to a paragraph about the named event/colony. Once you select one, you can swipe your finger across, to go to the next or previous event. Once at the main menu, you can click on “About the Colonies”. You can select any of the colonies that you wish, once you have you are greeted by a menu with multiple different options for you to click on. For example, if you were to click on the colony Connecticut, and then you click on Multimedia you are then able to watch a video clip about Connecticut. You can go through that process with any of the thirteen colonies. Lastly, if you go back to the main screen with the three options, there is “Daily Life”. Once on the new screen, you see six new links that you 75

can click on. Each link describes the daily life in particular areas for example, the farming section. It combines the colonies into three groups; the New England colonies (Northern colonies), the southern colonies, and then the middle colonies. It then explains how each area handled farming, explaining how each area has different needs for farming. The thirteen colonies app is compatible with the iPhone, iPod, and iPad.

U SING THE A PPLICATION 13 Colonies is a simple application that is very informative. This application will teach you about the 13 colonies and the life during that time period. 13 Colonies Tutorial

C LASSROOM U SES There are a few benefits with using the app in the classroom. First, it allows the student’s to explore the thirteen colonies at their own speed. Every student learns differently, so allowing them to use the technology to better their learning is a huge benefit. Children often find that history is extremely boring, so giving them something modern with a “boring” topic might excite them to learn about it. Not only does the thirteen colonies app inform about the colonies, but it also informs them about what occurred from that time, the history of how this nation came to be. The thirteen colonies app is very straight forward when it comes to working it. There are many different multi-media forms within this app, so the user just needs to follow the instructions on how to play the video clips or additional resources.
 The thirteen colonies app can be used as a stepping stone for this lesson. The way that the app is set up, the student’s should find learning about the colonies interesting. I think you would use my app first to allow the students to get familiar with our early United States history. You can learn a lot about each of the states from this app. This lesson goes more in depth with key words, that the teacher would have to hit on (the app does not discuss key vocabulary). Bingo could be used to stimulate the knowledge of the vocabulary and the stats that you learn within the app. I would say that my app goes with the remembering category of Bloom's. The students are learning about the colonies, and then with the lesson they are using what they learned and saying what they are learning just with the facts. So they then can apply what they learn 76

from the app to play educational games and see how much they grasped from using the app.
 The additional information provided discusses ways that technology can be helpful in the social studies classroom. The article is slightly outdated, but could easily be adapted to contemporary social blogs. Also, historical figure Twitter accounts can be created integrating current technologies with slightly dated educational topics. Overall, this is a great article to stimulate brainstorming ideas to capture your student’s attention.
 Lesson Plan

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Technology and Social Studies 




This section focuses on science apps.



Night Sky 2

Night Sky 2 is a very useful and fun app to use! It is simple really, you point the camera at the sky and you see which stars are which! This is a great science app that can allow students to monitor heavenly bodies and their position in the sky all throughout the year! Other features of the app include seeing constellations, planets and even other galaxies in the sky! While aiming the camera at the sky, one could click on a star or constellation and the app would give you some basic information on the object. One could also find the sunrise/sunset,

A BOUT THE A UTHOR This app: Night Sky 2, is being reviewed by Matt Meyer, a junior at Central Michigan University. Mr. Meyer plans on double majoring in Biology and Earth Science in Secondary Education, with an athletic coaching minor. Mr. Meyer has always been fascinated with the sky and outer space, so this app was right up his alley. He plans to teach astronomy someday, or even start an astronomy class in his district by writing the curriculum himself if he has to.

Night Sky 2 Tutorial Screencast


moon phase and day length on this app as well, since it uses your GPS location. This is a great educational app that is compatible on iPod, iPhone or iPad. To become familiar with the app, it doesn’t take more than ten or fifteen minutes of tinkering with it to have it all figured out. Exploring all the tabs and options on the screen is really the only thing an unfamiliar user would have to do to become competent at using the Night Sky 2 app.

this app is an analytical one, utilizing the “analyze” section in Bloom’s Taxonomy. Lesson Plan: Discovery Education Tutorial: Youtube

C LASSROOM U SES Night Sky 2 could be beneficial to any astronomical curriculum you would find yourself teaching. This app provides so much great and useful information from star names, moon phases, stargazing forecasts and constellation information. So many lessons could be adapted and incorporated from this app, and the students would undoubtedly enjoy it.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES There is a lesson plan I encountered that I believe if the Night Sky app was incorporated, would be a lot better and run more smoothly. The plan originally uses a software program that is similar to this app, but this forces the students to be stuck in the computer lab doing an assignment on the sky. With the use of this app, the students could do this all outside and get a better feel for the actual positioning of the stars and constellations. Also, it sure is a lot cheaper than a telescope. As far as Bloom’s Taxonomy is concerned, I definitely believe 80




There are many different ways one can help students exceed, but one big way is to teach them how to compete with this ever changing world. This world is primarily changing over to a technology based world and so one must be up to date with all the latest technology. One form of technology needed to be thoroughly understood are apps that help enhance student learning. One particular app for science teachers is called “Mitosis” by Inkling Systems, Inc.

A BOUT THE AUTHOR Emily Crick is a sophomore at Central Michigan University. She is currently very involved on campus at CMU and also in the community of Mount Pleasant. She is a Leader Advancement Scholar which helps her gain leadership skills and gives her the opportunity to help the campus of CMU. Also she is a member of an honor society and the manager of the Central Michigan women's softball team. Staying involved and helping others is a very important aspect of her life and is one reason she chose the profession of teaching. Emily is majoring in Integrated Science, Secondary Education with a minor in middle level education and leadership. This degree will allow her to teach fifth through twelfth grade with a specialty in fifth through ninth grades. Her ideal job is to teach either sixth grade science or eighth grade science though.

   This app is an interactive application for students of all ages. The app explains every step of the biologic process of mitosis. This process is an extremely important process for humans, animals and actually all eukaryotic cells. At every level of schooling a student learns different parts, depths and actions of mitosis. This is why this app is so universal for students in middle school. The app has videos, pictures, readings and other interactive aspects that can enhance a student's learning. For example, the mitosis app has sections where students can watch videos of mitosis occurring. While the videos are playing one can listen to the narrative that the app provides describing the steps occurring or one could mute the narrative and read the subtitles to understand what is occurring. The app also has sections strictly for reading that describes the steps of mitosis. In these sections, the words can be listened to through narration and the reader can follow along. The words are bolded as the narrator speaks them so students have a literature aspect as well as learning science. In addition, the app includes tests where students can see how much 81

they understand and real life pictures of mitosis happening. The convenient thing about this app is that it is compatible with any iphone or ipod touch. One does not need a new version, just a simple version will work perfectly and allow any student to learn in a different, more technical way.

U SING THE A PPLICATION Mitosis is a very simple application to use. The video below will describe step by step how to use the mitosis app. Follow the steps described and showed to you and you will become a professional at understanding mitosis.

Mitosis app Tutorial

C LASSROOM U SES The app Mitosis is an interactive application that targets everything about the process of cell division called mitosis. This app has many different benefits in the classroom than one would think. The app allows students to learn at their own level. A teacher can assign the students to get on the app and “play” on it, but there is really no playing: simply learning. Students will go through interactive videos, tutorials and read alongs that teach them about mitosis. This would be a very good break in the middle of a lecture. This break will allow students to breath and really digest what they have just been lectured on. The app also helps students not only in science, but with the read along sections, a student will surely gain in literacy without even trying.    The mitosis app is fairly straight forward, but there are some tricks to help when using the app. The first trick is to always know how to pause the videos and the interactive portion. This is important because it gives one time to understand the material better. Pause the information and then think about what was just said. Thinking over the information in small bits makes it much easier to fully comprehend. Another trick is when on the exploring tab of the app in order to move on, one must complete the interactive portion of the page. Directions are given at the very bottom of the page under the text and it is very straight forward and simple. The last tip is to fully use all the resources this app offers. It can be a great learning enhancement if used in the correct way.


Now that the app is more understood, how can an educator use if correctly in a lesson plan? That is very simple in this app. Found at biology lessons online website, there was an entire lesson plan strictly on mitosis and cell division. The lesson starts off with some questions to ask one’s classroom. These questions are not things that it is expected the students know, they will shortly learn them, but they are questions that the class can talk about and make their best guesses on the answers. After these questions is the best time to incorporate the first part of the app Mitosis to the students. The app will start to teach them about the different processes and give them some background before you teach them the full lesson. Giving students a set amount of time to explore the app is the best idea and this set time should be fairly short. Students should be getting an overview at this point. Next a teacher can lecture and get into the full lesson plan with other hands on activities. At the end of the lesson, the Mitosis app should be opened up for all students to review and enhance their knowledge through. Obviously the app Mitosis is exactly what is needed in this lesson plan to take it to a better level and help incorporate technology into the science classroom. This next level in the classroom spoken of is what everyone is striving for in educations these days. Bloom explained this in a very good way in his digital taxonomy. Bloom places different learning instruction and activities into groups. Each group has a certain level of thinking (lower and higher). The mitosis app is under the remembering taxonomy. This means that students recognize, describe, list and can retrieve the information. This

can be a higher level of thinking, and the app does indeed bring out that higher level of thinking in students.

A DDITIONAL R ESOURCES Lesson Plan Tutorial on technology in the classroom