Check out These Great iPad Apps for Your Lesson Planning needs
By: Todd Cherner and Alex Fegely
If I were to tell you there were apps for making lesson planning a breeze by helping with classroom activity inspiration, standards, and more, would that interest you? If so, here atApp Ed Review, we have good news! There are a plethora of lesson planning apps out there, and we’ve boiled them down to our four favorites for this month’s Roundup.
Remember, each and every app reviewed by us is analyzed against a comprehensive rubric in a consistent, informative manner by a panel of state-certified teachers. In addition, each review includes 3-5 instructional ideas for how to integrate it into your classroom!
Apps for Common Core
Need help selecting appropriate apps for the Common Core? Apps for Common Core is a pool of user-suggested apps for each grade level in math and language arts! Users first select a lesson category or theme, and then a list of applicable apps appears for each standard specific to the Common Core. From there, users can read about the app from the provided App Store description and easily link to the App Store to download it. Want to recommend an app for other teachers? Users can easily sign-in to suggest an app they love using in their classroom. Although Apps For Common Core has a great deal of apps suggested for the lower grade levels, its collection of apps for high school is growing. With its core strength being design, Apps For Common Core scored a 7.7 overall on our app rubric. Check out the full review here.
ACTFL Unit and Lesson Planner
Foreign language teachers have their own unique set of challenges when lesson planning. From goals and foreign language standards to interpretive modes and connecting content to other disciplines and cultures, foreign language lesson plans can be a challenge to write.ACTFL Unit and Lesson Planner from the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages streamlines the entire process with its easy-to-touch drop-down interface, which delivers detailed, high-quality lesson plans. In addition, ACTFL Unit and Lesson Planner includes a collection of reference resources such as example of foreign language lesson plans, an index of Common Core anchor standards, language function actions, and essential questions. A well-designed app, ACTFL Unit and Lesson Planner scored a 6.1 on App Ed Review’s Teacher Resource Rubric. See the full review and more here.
PlanTime allows teachers to create, store, and use lesson plans directly in the app. Although other apps have similar features, PlanTime is unique in that it includes a running clock teachers have to set for each lesson. To use the clock feature, teachers create different time segments for their lesson and allot a specific amount of time. For example, if a teacher plans to have students read a text for 20 minutes and follow the reading with a 10-minute class discussion, the teacher can use the timing feature in PlanTime to ensure that 20 minutes are devoted to the reading and 10 minutes are devoted to the discussion. For teachers who need to improve their lesson pacing, PlanTime is a sure bet! With its intuitive design, teachers of all iPad skill levels will benefit from PlanTime. To read our full report, please click here.
Teaching with Technology Video Library
Teaching with Technology Video Library is an all-encompassing lesson planning app. This app contains a collection of lesson plans, videos, materials, and reflections about a variety of topics appropriate for a range of learners and grade levels. Teachers only have to search for a lesson that interests them or could be used in their classroom, and this app will provide detailed instructions about how to implement the lesson, resources for the lesson, and reflections about other teachers’ experiences leading students through the lesson. Although this app provides an abundance of information for each lesson, it serves as a wonderful reminder of all the components that go into a thoughtful lesson. With average scores, teachers will find this app useful to peruse on occasion when brainstorming lesson plan ideas or reflecting on the success of a lesson. Our complete report for this app is located here.
That’s all for this month’s Roundup. If you would like more information about any of the apps mentioned in this Roundup or that are on the App Ed Review website, please contact us at [email protected] Let’s make the 2014-2015 school year, the year of the educational app!