Over the summer it’s time for us teachers to prepare for our new class and the year ahead. Over the next few weeks I’m going to put spotlights on particular topics or themes, highlighting some apps which can support learning. This year the AppStore team have selected the best interactive stories, games and knowledge apps for a collection called ‘Explore the World’. Their collections are always interesting and pick out great apps to use for lessons in the classroom. Take a look at this featured collection here.
I’ve taken a quick walk through this latest collection and picked out a few apps which look like good fun for early years and ones which can develop knowledge and understanding for this area.
Homes by TinyBop
Play in faraway places and wander into homes from around the world. Personalise homes in other countries with your own photographs and decorations, getting a feel for what your new bedroom could look like if you lived in Morocco.
Plants by TinyBop
Unearth the secrets of the green kingdom Explore the forest, desert and grasslands in this interactive diorama of the world’s biomes. Learn the seasons and the weather, burro with barking critters and see what happens when a wildfire rips through a forest.
Grandma Loves Bugs
10 mini games including close up photographs, instructional videos and bursting with facts. This is a great app for counting, reading, spelling, sorting and matching.
This is a collection of apps, planning and activities from kindergarten teacher Kristi Meeuwse. Her course ‘Spinning Spiders’ is designed to walk you through a series of linked activities to build knowledge of spiders and apply learning using a range of content creation apps. Take a look at this fantastic resource here, available for free on Apple Distinguished Educators on iTunes U.
These are just 3 apps from this featured collection, and are stand-alone activities that can be part of provision. It’s always worth thinking about enhancement when using apps. How is the technology enhancing the learning? Try to build in opportunities for children to record what they have made and reflect on their work. You could screenshot the scenes from Plants or Homes apps and put those backgrounds in Puppet Pals to tell a story. Children could apply their learning from the Grandma Loves Bugs app by authoring a non-fiction book in Book Creator, using their own drawings or screen shots from the app. By using these two apps, children will move from consuming information to creating content on the iPads.