Here’s a simple app for a last-minute Thanksgiving activity with elementary school students. Hand Turkey is a free iPad app that brings the classic elementary school art activity of drawing hand turkeys to the iPad. Students can use the Hand Turkey app to decorate turkeys, name their turkeys, and play a simple turkey game. The turkeys make realistic turkey gobbling sounds.
Archives for November 2014
DMD Topic is a neat iPad app for quickly creating short videos. To create a video you simply take a picture or import a picture from your iPad’s camera roll then start talking about the picture. You can record for up to 30 seconds. When you’re finished recording, watch the video and select “tagging” to make the video automatically zoom to the objects that you are talking about in your video. Watch my sample video to see a DMD Topic video in action.
DMD Topic could be a good app to have students use to create short explanatory videos. Students can also use the app to create a short video about picture of their pets, their families, or anything else that is important to them (perhaps the players on their favorite sports team). DMD Topic does not require registration.
DMD Topic is free for a limited time (as of November 24, 2014). The regular price is $0.99 USD.
One of my favorite things about iPads and the web in general is the ease with which anyone can create a multimedia product. Teachers can create and organize multimedia reference materials for students and students can create multimedia products to show off their ideas. The following three iPad apps allow you and your students to create multimedia ebooks.
Story Creator is a free iPad app that makes it easy to create narrated picture books on your iPad. To create a narrated picture book on Story Creator start by inserting a picture as your book’s cover. To create a page just tap the “+” icon and import a picture, draw a picture, type some text, or do all three. After completing one or all three of those previous actions tap the microphone icon to record your narration. After making your recording you can quickly adjust it so that each word of text is highlighted to match the timing of your narration.
Little Story Maker is a great little app that adults and children can use to create their own custom books on their iPads. The app provides book templates that you complete with your own images, text, and voice narration. All of the books that you create are stored in your Little Story Maker bookshelf. To create a book in Little Story Maker start by adding a title, add a cover image by selecting from your iPad’s camera roll, then choose a template for your book. On each page you can add an image from your camera roll and type the text for your page. If you want to add narration to your book simply click the “record audio” button after typing your text. Then you can add narration that will play on the page.
Book Creator allows anyone to create their own books using images, text, videos, and audio recordings. You can arrange your book in three different formats; portrait, square, or landscape. Each page in your book can include pictures and videos from your iPad’s camera roll and or from your iTunes library. In addition to the pictures and videos you can include as much as text as you can fit on each page. In fact, if you just want to have text on a page you can do that. If you would like to narrate your book you can tap the record button to add your voice to each page of your book. Every page in your book can have a custom color scheme. Your completed Book Creator projects can be sent directly to your iBooks library or shared to a service like Box or Dropbox where they will be available as ePub publications.
Creating narrated slideshows is one of the easiest ways to introduce students to digital storytelling practices. Students can create narrated slideshows to illustrate and explain their research findings, to tell a personal story, or to outline the framework for a story that will written down later. The following three iPad apps all provide an easy way to create narrated slideshows.
Shadow Puppet Edu is my favorite app on this list. Shadow Puppet Edu is a free iPad app that students can use to create audio slideshow videos. The app offers an integrated search tool that students can use to find pictures from the Library of Congress, to search for images from NASA, and to find Creative Commons licensed images from Flickr. Students can also import pictures from the camera roll on their iPads. After selecting a set of images students can arrange them into any sequence by simply dragging and dropping them into order. Then to create a story students press the record button and talk while flipping through their images. Students can share their Shadow Puppet Edu projects through a variety of avenues including YouTube and email. Shadow Puppet Edu projects are automatically saved to the camera roll on a student’s iPad.
30hands is a free iPad app that makes it very easy to create a narrated slideshow. To create a basic narrated slideshow on 30hands all you need to do is import images from your iPad’s camera roll then press the record button below each image to record your narration. If you don’t have any pictures on your iPad you can take pictures using the 30hands app. 30hands also allows you to draw images instead of importing pictures. You can combine imported pictures with drawn images in your presentations. And you can draw on top of imported images. When your project is complete you can save it on your iPad or share it with the 30hands community.
30hands is also available in a pro version. The pro version of 30hands allows for integration of Google Drive and Dropbox for storing and sharing projects. Additionally, the pro version offers the option to insert video clips into your slides.
Pixntell is an iPad app for quickly creating simple narrated photostories. To create a story using Pixntell all that you need to do is start a new project, select some images, place them in order, and then start talking about each of your pictures. You control the timing for each image. If you want to talk about your first picture for twenty seconds, your second picture for just three seconds, and your third picture for fifteen seconds, you can do that. Pixntell allows you to crop your pictures, add text them, add filters to them, place fun stickers on your pictures, and draw on your images highlight a portion of them. When your project is complete you can upload it directly to YouTube, save it in your Dropbox account, share it on Facebook, or send to friends via email. The free version of Pixntell allows you include five images in your projects. The paid version allows you use an unlimited amount of images in your projects.
Weebly, a popular website creation service, has offered an iPhone app for a couple of years. This morning I learned that they now offer a free iPad app too. Weebly’s free iPad app allows you to create a new website from scratch. After creating your website with the app you will be able to manage nearly all aspects of your site from your iPad. The drag-and-drop website building process that made Weebly popular as a browser-based tool is found in the new iPad app. Select a site component from the menu of options and drag it into the editor to build your site one component at a time. Watch the video embedded below for a short overview of Weebly’s free iPad app.
If you’re looking for an iPad-friendly tool for developing a classroom website or for your students to use to create digital portfolios, take a look at Weebly’s iPad app. Speaking of digital portfolios for students, Weebly for Education allows teachers to manage their students’ accounts.
Weebly’s iPad app does require you to be updated to iOS 8.