If you have ever gone looking for apps in the App Store you understand the frustration that can go along with it. It is difficult to find what you want unless you have an exact title to search for. Google searches were not much better simply because you would run into millions of results that were all mixed together. One of the first 10 results may be an app, but you never knew for sure.
Well, Google is doing its best to make things a little easier on all of us. They have introduced an Application Search. It is very easy to use and can save you a ton of time. Start your Google Search just like you would any other time. Once your results come up, we are able to filter them for applications. Below the search bar you will see the option for “More“. Click it and then select the “Applications” option.
Your search will be filtered to show only applications. These will include applications for iOS as well as android and Google play. In the times I have searched, however, most of the first applications listed are for iOS devices.
While it still may not be the perfect answer you are looking for, it is heads and shoulders above searching through page after page of search results. Add the Google Applications search to your repertoire. It will save you tons of time.
The Book Creator app has been one of my favorites for some time…that is no secret. This last week, Dan Amos (@bookcreatorapp), released an update that gives everyone even more reasons to love it! Here is a brief summary of what is new with this update.
You can now link both text and images within your book to resources on the web. Connect to audio files, a YouTube video, or a document or article that houses more information…just to name a few. They made it very easy to use, just like the rest of the app. As an added bonus, you are now also able to format individual words within your text to make it stand out. Two great additions.
Another amazing option. This allows you to bring a book back into the app to add to, or edit, a book you have previously sent to iBooks…even if you don’t have the original file anymore. This also allows you to import a book from another iPad and work on it. A great classroom addition.
I saved my favorite for last! This update allows you to combine 2 or more books into one. Have students work individually on a section of a book, even on different iPads, and then combine them all into one final class project. Have students write chapters and then combine for a “novel”. Share a Science Experiment with different members of a group addressing each part of the scientific process. What a fabulous option.
Those are the big 3 (actually 4) upgrades that I think make this app one of the best on the market. To learn even more about these upgrades, as well as instructions on how to use all these new options, check out What’s New in Version 2.4 at redjumper.net.
If you have the app but have not yet upgraded, what are you waiting for?!? If you have not purchased the app yet, I can tell you it is the best $4.99 I have ever spent. Teachers and students alike love this app. You will too!
I have been playing with a few different iPad apps to use for creating a presentation video in the last few weeks. There are a bunch out there and they all seem to bring their own little plus to the table. The best one I have run across so far is Doodlecast Pro.
Doodlecast Pro has a bunch of things going for it.
- It allows you to pause your videos and even back up a few seconds to re-record something you felt you struggled with. Using the pause option does not cause any hiccups at all…it has a seamless flow!
- You have a number of backgrounds to choose from right within the app. Choose from graph paper, lined paper, a Venn diagram, or a comic strip, just to name a few.
- Need a background of your own? Import an image from your camera roll, resize it, and use it how you see fit.
- There are many options as far as color for both fill and drawing/writing. You can also adjust the width of your lines.
- Choose from different images to use as a cursor to show where you want the viewer to be looking.
- You can have multiple pages within the doodlecast. Add pages with different backgrounds to achieve different purposes. Once again, the transition between pages is seamless. Pause when adding a page to gather your thoughts then go right on recording again.
- When you are looking to share your presentation video, you have the option to export to your camera roll, email, add to YouTube, or share through Dropbox. Choose the quality of your video to help you control file size if you think that will be an issue.
All of the functions are super-easy…right at your fingertips. I took about 3-4 minutes and created the sample video you see here. It was very quick and easy.
I can see this app being used across the curriculum. Record a lesson for students who were absent or create tutorials that your students can visit when they need a little help. Let your students record what they are doing to explain a process they are studying. Give directions to or teach your class when you are not there. The possibilities are endless!
To get an even better look at what Doodlecast Pro can do for you, visit Doodlecastpro.com and watch their short introductory video. The app is on sale right now for $.99. Hurry and take advantage of the offer! You will not regret it.
I (obviously) am a big fan of blogging. I believe everyone in education needs to work together. Administrators, teachers, and students all have things worth sharing. I love reading about what is happening in classrooms. Nothing makes me grin more than reading a student blogging about something they have discovered. You can feel the excitement that comes out through his or her words!
I have been using Blogger for quite some time personally and I branched out to WordPress for this site. I wanted to make sure I had a grasp of multiple sites so I am capable of helping with whatever program a teacher asks about. I have heard great things about Weebly for some time now, so I figured it was time I gave them a look as well. I was NOT DISAPPOINTED!
Weebly.com is very easy to use…and free! It only takes a few minutes to get your site up and running. The interface is very easy to understand and work with. I started off by creating a site for my family really quickly. I would say I have no more than 45 minutes invested and that includes creating my account. Here is the site as it stands after the initial 45 minutes. I have done nothing to it since: The Wagner Family.
My daughter loves anything involving art. She was looking for someplace to start showing off her projects. Over the holiday break we set up a site for her. After about 20 minutes of tutoring she was well on her way. Here is what she has accomplished thus far: Alayna’s Art. She is also a big fan of the Weebly iOS App. It is very simple to use. It allows her to take quick shots of something she is working on and then post in just a few minutes.
To help you get started, I have created these Weebly Cheat Sheets for you to download. There are also tutorials on their site to help you get started. If you like what you see from the free version but are looking for more, a Pro version is available for a price.
Weebly also has accounts for educators. This is also free. From what I have seen, there are two big pluses with an education account: you have the ability to assign homework through the site for your students, and you can create student sub-accounts which allows them to create their own site.
Great communication is key in the education field. Weebly is doing its part to make that communication a little bit easier!