Monday, June 9, 2014

Summer Slow Down Favorite iPad apps

Summer slow down begins! I'll be posting once a week every Monday so tune in!

I can't remember which conference I went to, TAEA or NAEA, but I had just received a grant from our district so we could have iPads in the art and music room! I was so excited and I found a session for apps used in the art room and sat in the front row eager to learn. Problem being the apps that the presenter mentioned were sometimes costly and there was no demonstration on how to incorporate the apps into a lesson. Total bummer!

This year the last six weeks of school I wanted to go paperless(except for some planning paper) and all we used were the iPads! CRAZY & SCARY for the art teacher that's for sure, I mean what kind of art teacher doesn't use paper and pencil?! BUT it was AWESOME!

Kids researching an element of art using the app for BrainPop Jr.
Using an app called Story Me to present information.
Using an app called Hello Crayon to create movement in an artwork.

At any rate I wanted to share with you all some of my favorite iPad apps that I discovered this year in the art studio! 

1. Educreations
Is a great app and so simple to use! You draw, insert pictures and use multiple pages in this app. Not only that you can RECORD your voice and what you are drawing to create a video. We used this app to create drawn animations as well as stop animations. This can also be used to create presentations for any number of subjects not just art! I have 4th grade presenting about artists and 3rd grade about the elements of art. 

2. Story Me
Is perfect for any sort of comic/graphic novel unit along with a literacy connection. You can insert pictures into a layout and add speech bubbles, captions and even create a "cartoon" effect. My usual end of the year project for 5th grade is the graphic novel. They have to know the parts of a graphic novel, panels, gutter, speech bubbles, captions etc... and come up with a plot, setting, have a beginning, middle and end to their story. This year however the twist is that their final product must be made with technology of some kind. Story me is just an option of course.

3. ThingLink
Is an awesome way to get a lot of interaction between the audience and the presentation. You insert a picture and can add icons that either include text, a link, or a video. So if you're giving a presentation on, let's say panda bears, you can actually link a video of pandas in their natural habitat or insert information about their place of origin, diet, etc... This is also an option for my kids doing research right now.

4. Hello Crayon/Color Pencil
Let's draw! It's pretty straight forward, you've got different materials to draw with using either a blank page or a coloring page.  This is great for my kids who want to create backgrounds for other projects.

5. BrainPOP & BrainPOP Jr. 
Ummmm HOW AMAZING IS BRAINPOP!? Until my partner in crime Andrea Keller (website & twitter here) showed me all the wonderful things that BrainPop can do I had no idea that they offered a lot of art related videos! Not only that the kids can respond to these videos in many different ways as well. 

Did I forget to mention that they have lots of lesson plans to pick and choose from? AND as an educator you can search by the standards that you are looking to cover in your classroom, I can't say enough about these great sites that are also in app form!

6. Mix & Color
Kids can explore how different colors work together to create other colors. Definitely great for Kinder and maybe a refresher for 1st and 2nd grade. 

7. Origami
I would like to use this for those kids who always finish EARLY. No matter what you do, they just can't seem to take their time or they do it right the first time and they are just plain done.  This app gives step by step tutorials on how to create some origami animals. It's limited, but just enough to be useful and not too complicated. The directions are written out and animated to show the direction of the folds. Pretty neat!

It's so easy the kids didn't need my help at all! I'm not sure
if that's a good thing or a bad thing...
Completed origami heart.
8. Shapes
For toddler and preschool yes, but still a good tool for assessment of knowledge, and for my ELL students who need some extra practice time.

9. Camera Awesome!
Lots of cool effects with this cool camera app! The kids can learn about the rule of thirds while editing their photos using different effects and contrast.

10. Drawing Carl
Another drawing app with more of a variety of materials to choose from. 

11. Color Speak
This is great especially for ELL students. The kids can tap on a color to hear how it is pronounced, but switch the mode to record their own voice, my students can use english and spanish to practice as well!

12. PuzzlePlus: Art
A fun game that helps with kids space recognition while using famous works of art! 

I made this for the kids to take home this summer, hopefully they either have an iPad or know someone who does. The best thing about all these apps is that they are FREE! Here is another blog that I follow called The Elementary Art Room! they recently also posted about some iPad apps that I definitely want to give a try!

Do you have iPads in your art studio? What is your favorite app and how do you use it in your classroom?

Tune in next week for a list of things I wish I'd known as a first year art educator.

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