“When it comes to apps, I give up. Every day there are a few dozen more that will change everything, make our lives easier, and our academic lives more enriching. No one can possibly stay on top of it, which is why I depend on the wisdom of others to keep me informed. To paraphrase Henry Jenkins in Convergence Culture—There's too much for everyone to know, everyone knows something, and we have no choice but to work together. That's why I depend on lists of apps like these to keep me in the loop. I pass it on for your edification.”
Monday, November 7, 2011 9:00 am
Posted by Jeff Dunn – Executive Editor
This is the second in a set of featured articles on the best iPad apps for the classroom. Be sure to check out last week’s ‘65+ iPad Apps Perfect For Elementary Schools‘ and stay tuned for more great app lists and resources!
If you’re a student, teacher, or administrator at a middle school looking into adopting iPads for educational purposes, it’s important to know that the iPad is more than just an easy way to browse the web or visit the app store. There are actually thousands of educational apps hiding in the bowels of the app store.
But how do you find them? Unless you know exactly what you’re looking for, it is usually pretty tough to find the best apps. Heck, once you may come across an app it may prove to not be worth the time it took to download!
The Palm Beach School System has an incredible wiki where members of the community share their favorite apps for specific disciplines. Below I’ve embedded their list for the top middle school apps but they also have a curated list of apps for middle school and high school.
This resource is so wonderful I wanted to give a mention to the people behind the project. Be sure to reach out to them if you have any questions or just want to let them know that you are benefiting from their hard work:
- John Shoemaker (John.Shoemaker@palmbeachschools.org)
- Melissa Lander (Melissa.Lander@palmbeachschools.org)
- John Long (John.Long.firstname.lastname@example.org)
(H/T to @rmbyrne for introducing me to this wiki! Be sure to follow him at the always wonderful Free Tech 4 Teachers site.) H/T=Hat Tip
- iBooks – a ereader book store.
- Book Creator – Create your own iBooks right on the iPad. (Allows everything except video)
- Reading Trainer – This app teaches you how to train your eyes and brain to read and comprehend text faster. Think of it as exercise for your reading skills.
- Free Books – 23,469 Classics to Go
- Dictionary.com – Dictionary & Thesaurus – A dictionary and a Thesaurus.
- Literary Analysis Guide – Elements of literature are arranged graphically around three wheels (poetry, prose, and rhetoric).
- Kindle – Kindle is an eReader from Amazon.com
- Shakespeare Pro – Complete works of Shakespeare. 41 plays, 154 sonnets, and 6 poems. All works can be cross searched for anything.
- Jules Verne Collection – Sixteen of Jules Verne’s books
- MaxJournal – A simple and elegant journal.
- LitCharts – Link to LitCharts website. Each of the LitCharts are available on the iPad
- The Ruler – measure things in inches or centimeters
- Math Quizzer- Math Quizzer is an interactive and fun way to, not only learn, but also to boost your skills in; Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, and Division. It offers an easy to understand chalkboard visual, which keeps track of your “score” as you progress.
- Bloomberg – Bring the power of the most trusted source for financial information to your iPad, along with tools to help you analyze the world’s markets.
- Fractals – Move and pinch fractals in real time.
- MASTERING MATHEMATICS GRADE 6 – A mathematics practice book for 6th grade students.
- MASTERING MATHEMATICS GRADE 7 -A mathematics practice book for 7th grade students.
- Geometry Stash – Access the most commonly used theorems, postulates, and corollaries.
- SpaceTime – Powerful graphing calculator. 2D and 3D graphing
- PocketCAS pro – Advanced Graphic and Symbolic Scientific Calculator. Handles every mathematical problem you might encounter in school or university.
- PocketCAS lite – Free Graphic calculator. Not as many features as the pro version above.
- Quick Graph – 2D and 3D graphing calculator.
- U.S. Geography by Discovery Education – Become an expert in U.S. Geography with this app. Dozens of videos and interactive gameplay.
- Civil War America’s Epic Struggle-Civil War: America’s Epic Struggle Features over 1,000 high-res photos, more than an hour of multimedia presentations, in excess of 100 authentic maps, dozens of first hand accounts, and numerous text articles and biographies, it provides instantaneous access to information on every aspect of the war.
- Beautiful Planet HD – Beautiful Planet is a groundbreaking app that captures the breathtaking beauty of our world and its cultures. Featuring a collection of galleries three decades in the making by travel photographer, author and explorer, Peter Guttman, Beautiful Planet spans seven continents and 160 countries.
- World Atlas HD – The best maps available from National Geographic
- History:Maps of World – Collection of High-Resolution historical Maps.
- The History Clock – An app that converts the current time to a year and gives a fast fact about that year.
- USA Thematic Atlas & Facts – High quality maps filled with facts and information.
- USA Puzzle – A USA puzzle that needs to be put together. Double tap on the state for information about that state.
- Motionx GPS HD – Maps and navigation instruments. Maps from all over the world. Can include waypoints. Can be good for Geocaching.
- The World Factbook for iPad – Extensive information of over 250 countries around the world.
- WORLD BOOK – This Day in History – Interactive multimedia calendar that features historical events for the day.
- The Presidency – Historical information on every President of the United States.
- Presidents HD- Historical information on every President of the United States.
- Declaration for iPad – A copy of the Declaration of Independence.
- Constitution for iPad – A copy of the Constitution of the United States.
- MyCongress – A portal to detailed information about elected congress officials. Please note: This is not an official government resource
- GeogXPert – A reference app – containing maps which allow you to look up countries and find country information – as well as a quiz app.
- Bobo Explores Light – A great app that explores 21 in-depth topics including lasers, telescopes, lightning, reflection, bioluminescence, and sunlight
- 3D Cell Simulation and Stain Tool – Learn about the cell and its structures in a 3D tool.
- EMD PTE – A highly interactive periodic table of elements.
- VideoScience – Science experiments with video.
- The Elements: A Visual Exploration – If you think you’ve seen the periodic table, think again. The Elements: A Visual Exploration lets you experience the beauty and fascination of the building blocks of our universe in a way you’ve never seen before. And as the first really new ebook developed from the ground up for iPad, The Elements beautifully shows off the capabilities of this lovely device.
- A Life Among Whales – Video documentary featuring the exploration into the life and work of whale biologist Roger Payne
- Newtons Laws – Explains Newton’s first two laws of motion and his law of universal gravitation.
- Periodic Table of the Elements – Standard periodic table of elements. Free as of May 16, 2010
- Molecules – View and manipulate 3D renderings of molecules.
- 3D Brain – Rotate and zoom around 29 interactive structures in the brain.
- Science Glossary – an extensive glossary of scientific terms and biographies.
- myArm Muscles – Visually rich and stimulating way to learn about our complex arm muscles.
- HD Birds Encyclopedia – Highly graphic encyclopedia that has detailed and comprehensive information about a variety of birds.
- HD Marine Life – An encyclopedia of marine life.
- Frog Dissection – A virtual frog dissection app.
- HD Solar System – Highly graphic encyclopedia that has detailed and comprehensive information about the solar system.
- GoSkyWatch Planetarium – Easily and quickly identify and locate stars, planets, constellations and more with a touch or by simply pointing to the sky. Have fun with family and friends discovering the images in the night sky. Go outside and explore the night sky.
- Star Walk – An interactive astronomy guide.
- Solar Walk – A 3D Solar System Model.
- Distant Suns – A database of over 130,000 stars, nebula, and galaxies.
- DrakeEQ HD – 3D simulation of the Milky Way Galaxy
- GoSkyWatch Planetarium – Locate stars, planets, and constellations.
- Magic Piano – Play timeless pieces on spiral and circular keyboards, or follow beams of light – mastery requires only imagination. Play alone, or travel through a warp hole and play Piano Roulette with other performers across the world.
- Fashion Sketchbook: The Stylish Dress Up Game – A fashion design application that allows the users to design outfits.
- SketchBook Pro – A professional-grade paint and drawing application.
- Brushes – Brushes is a painting application designed from scratch for the iPad. Featuring an advanced color picker, several realistic brushes, multiple layers, extreme zooming, and a simple yet deep interface, it is a powerful tool for creating original artwork on your mobile device. The June 1, 2009 cover of The New Yorker was created in Brushes.
- Picasso HD – A virtual gallery of Pablo Picasso’s work featuring hundreds of high definition paintings of his greatest works.
- Van Gogh HD – A virtual gallery of Vincent Van Gogh’s work featuring hundreds of high definition paintings of his greatest works.
- Klimt HD – A virtual gallery of Austrian Painter Gustav Klimt work featuring hundreds of high definition paintings of his greatest works.
- Smudge – Finger painting app
- Skrambler X – Assemble famous masterpieces like a jigsaw puzzle. Learn interesting facts about the artists and their artwork while putting each piece in place.
- Gravilux – an app that lets you draw with stars
- The Hot Rod Art Book: Masters of Chicken Scratch – Over 100 pages of hot rod artwork. Over one and a half hours of instructional videos that show the complete process from sketch to rendering.
- TAO – TranslateIt! Online – one click translation of text into numerous languages using Google translate.
- AIUEO-HIRAGANA – Touch, Listen, and Learn Japanese.
- Japanese Phrases & Lessons – 2,700 Japanese phrases with sound
- French English Dictionary & Translator – French – English Dictionary
- TouchLanguage French – Learn over 2,000 French words and phrases
- BidBox Vocabulary Trainer: English – Spanish – Learn Spanish vocabulary
- ?????? – English – Chinese Dictionary
- German English Dictionary & Translator – German – English Dictionary
- Italian English Dictionary & Translator – Italian – English Dictionary
- Key Wiz – Learn how to play the piano.
- Virtuoso Piano Free 2 HD – Learn the basics of music and how to play the piano.
- Magic Piano – Play the piano freestyle or on a spiral keyboard.
- Air Harp – Strum and pluck the strings for a harp sound.
- Proloquo2Go – full featured alternative communication solution for people who have difficulty speaking
- Speak it! Text to Speech – A high quality text to speech app.
- Pocket Picture Planner HD – Use pictures or graphics to create a visual calendar.
- Keynote – A slideshow presentation program
- Pages- A word processing program
- Numbers – A spreadsheet application
- iBooks – a ereader book store.
- Notability – text to speech or just a note taking app
- Puppet Pals – Create your own unique shows with animation and audio in real time!
- Mobile Mouse – Mobile Mouse instantly transforms your iPad into a wireless mouse and trackpad for your computer.
- Bento – Manage things with 25 ready to use databases.
- GoodReader – Within moments of downloading GoodReader, you’ll be transferring files from the computer to the iPad. Supports a wide range of files.
- Note Taker HD – An app for writing handwritten notes, diagrams, etc.
- Sundry Notes Pro – Sundry Notes is the first social note taking application. Write, draw, record and research right within the app – and then share your notes with others.Take notes right within your application, including: Write text (and change font color, size, etc.), draw anywhere in your notes, search Wikipedia, Google, and Google Books – and grab images from them for your notes using two fingers, Import PDFs from the internet, Import images from your photo library, record sound/voice, Change page background to graph paper, lined paper, legal paper, etc.
- MindNode – Mind mapping, brainstorming, organization.
- iThoughtsHD – A mind map tool for the iPad
- Evernote – Evernote turns the iPad into an extension of your brain, helping you remember anything and everything that happens in your life.
- Stick It – Sticky Notes with Bump™ – Sticky notes you can share with other iPad Users
- Educate – The ultimate teacher’s companion providing mobile access to your student’s data, teaching strategies, eLearning tools, and timetable.
- Cramberry – Create flash cards to study from.
- Professor Garfield Cyberbullying – Garfield and Friends share information about Cyberbullying
- Professor Garfield Online Safety – Garfield and Friends share information about Online Safety
- eClicker and eClicker Host- A personal response system that allows teachers to poll their classes in real time.
- PDF Reader Pro Edition – PDF reader.
- Discovery Education – Educational videos