Sometimes pictures don’t always say what you need them to. Adding your voice to them can draw your audience in and help them to understand what you are trying to present them. As is the case of Shadow Puppet, where the app gives you the opportunity to tell your story with both pictures and your voice. I have been testing it out for a bit and have found that it is easy to use and it can be very useful in the classroom. Let’s take a look at it more and see what I am talking about.
In my last post, I wrote about Flowboard and how it can be used to give a presentation or create a story to show others. Well, today, I am continuing on that theme on presentations and story telling, but taking a different view. Tapestry is a story creating app, that makes it very easy for the end user to create something to share with others. It is not as media rich as Flowboard, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that it has a place in the classroom. After playing with Tapestry for a little while, I don’t see it as a presentation creator like PowerPoint, although it could be used for this purpose, but more so as a way to create a story book to show to others. Let me show you more about what I mean.
When it comes to giving presentations, PowerPoint has been the standard for such a long time that a lot of students revert to that. But, with technology getting better and more creative, there are a slew of other apps out there that are starting to challenge it’s reign as the “go to” app for creating and sharing presentations. Besides, PowerPoint is no longer being looked at as innovative and exciting whereas a lot of these other apps are starting to do some things with presentations that make them more intriguing not only for people who use technology, but for students and teachers as well. The one that I am choosing to look at today is Flowboard. There are a variety of reasons why I chose to do a write up of this one, but before I get into those details, let’s take a look at the app itself and what it can do for students.
You know the saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words?” Well, when it comes to education, some times pictures or what students write on paper, doesn’t necessarily always portray what they are really trying to say. There have been many times when I read what students write and then I will ask them what they meant by what they wrote. A lot of the time when they tell me what they meant to write down or explain their answer, they usually have something very good to say. What if we gave students more of the opportunity to really explain what they are trying to communicate instead of always making them write it down and turn it in on a piece of paper for us to grade? This is where an app like SoundCloud can come into play and I believe that it can be a very powerful tool in the classroom, not only for students, but also for teachers. Let’s take a look at it more to see how it works and how it can be used in the classroom.
When I used to teach math in middle school, one of the most enjoyable lessons I taught my students was about stocks, how they worked, and to let them even buy and sell them with fake money. They loved to do it and they got a lot out of it. They used a lot of the math concepts we were learning at the time and it gave them the opportunity to apply what they were learning to a real world application.
When I saw an iPhone app that gives people the opportunity to do what I did in class, I knew I had to at least try it out to see if it could be used in education. TradeHero is a fun iOS app that gives people the opportunity to buy and sell stocks without having to use their own money. I have been using it for a couple of months now and I really like using it not only for my classroom, but also for the real world as well. Let’s take a look at it more to let me tell you what I mean.