Effective Apps for Use in the Classroom
There are over 500,000 apps in Apple’s iTunes Store and the authors noted that there are many useful ones that can be appropriate to support learning and teaching (Norris & Soloway, 2012). Carr and Prater (2013) stated “classroom with the iPads involved students utilizing apps to reinforce skill acquisition of letters/sounds, sight/spelling words” (p. 3857).
Because there are few studies that have looked at the efficacy of using iPad apps in elementary school, for reading and writing, I have used studies that show promise at that level because of the success found in higher grades. One such report determined that iPads and educational apps are appropriate and effective in grades 6-12. Teachers have their own technique to integrate technology seamlessly in educational standards under the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), which can be used in all school systems for ensuring proper usage and high quality education (Cohen, 2012).
One such tool Cohen (2012) mentioned is the ePub book format is an open source outlet for students and teachers to download books and use the free Subtext app to analyze or summarize what they are reading. “Subtext aligns with standard 1 by allowing students to make meaning from the text and find evidence to support their arguments, claims, or thesis statements” (p. 32) and they can look up new vocabulary and discuss the books with classmates or others using the apps somewhere else.
Another CCSS app is the Gale Access My Library (AML) program which allows students to enter databases related to a book or assigned topic. Students can use “reliable and vetted sources” (p. 33) for safe, relevant and informative researching. A similar tool is Diigo, which allows students to save the texts, highlight, and add a sticky note in the text book. Also, students can share bookmarks with the whole class and they have an email account that allows them to receive links to books or articles. The Diigo app allows students to work collaboratively through sharing annotations...