Saturday, December 31, 2011


So, I was visiting my techy friend and look at her new purchase for their ipad. I couldn't resist and bought one for myself. This will be much nicer than all those finger prints on the screen and will also help printing neater. I'll keep in touch and let you know if it's another one of those worthwhile tools to use.

And then there's the wonderful gift my son gave me for Christmas. I LOVE this. I'm not sure if I'll share with the students at school--well, at least not yet.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Gingerbread Apps

The last week of grade one before Christmas break will focus on all things Gingerbread.  Here are 2 apps I found that we will be exploring.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

App Happy!

Wow!  Today a colleague of mine stumbled upon a comprehensive list of apps geared for children with asperger's syndrome.  This list looks fantastic for the primary classroom or for any children with special needs.  I LOVE how the list shows a picture of the app, names the app and gives a brief summary of what to expect.  The list is also organized into many sub lists such as writing, reading, games, art, music, communication and so much more.  I think my Christmas holiday will be spent exploring many of these apps!  Check them out too and feel free to leave me a comment about the ones that you think are excellent!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Fun with Fingerprints

I stumbled across 4 new apps by fingerprints.  3 of them were books.  We did not log in to access all the parent features, we simply took the guest option, but my own children had fun with the 3 stories.  They were educational and asked comprehension questions as the story went along.

Then this morning I check out the finger print play maker.  After creating an avatar with my fingerprint and recording my voice to it, I was able to play letter recognition and number recognition games.  My voice recordings cheered me on, or let me know when I had made a mistake.  Very cool!

These apps are free for a limited time...... check them out!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A teachable moment... just go with it!

Today was one of those throw the lesson plan out the window and just go with the teachable moment kind of days.  As we checked the weather on idress, it told us it was -18C.  Cold yes, but a true northern girl like me knew it just had to be colder.  So we quickly opened up safari and went to Environment Canada.  We discovered it was a whooping -29C with the wind, almost indoor recess weather, but not quite.  So it was time to talk frost bite and making sure we wear all those winter clothes that idress has hanging in our icloset!  As we talked I thought....... we should write about this!  And write we did!  We got out the markers and wrote an interactive story about dressing for the weather.  The kids decided it should be a rebus story so we would see the pictures of the clothes.  Then we decided if it hung in the hallway, all the kids would know why they need to wear the right winter gear!  So here it is......

Notice our app to app pictures posted around it!  The kids just love when it is their turn to do the weather, only 3 left and everyone will have had a turn!  I guess tomorrow we will go back to the short vowel o lesson I had planned on doing today.  I just love those teachable moments!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Teach me kindergarten teach me grade one

I love these apps. Each of them sell for 99 cents. You can create a profile for up to 4 students on a device and it teaches addition, subtraction,spelling and reading site words. There are stickers reward charts with a sticker earned after every 3 correct answers and the stickers can be placed to create scenes. I have created profiles for 2 of my students who work on a specialized program and they absolutely love it. It is hands on and at just the right level. Now where is teach me grade two?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

screen shots - App to App

Well I just love the Reflections on Technology Blog bookmarked at the side!  I can not take credit for this idea - it is all Mrs. Malchow's, BUT it is working wonderfully in my class and I have finally found a way to implement that Ipad into our calendar time EVERYDAY!

So first I learned how to take a screen shot - I did not know this before!  In case you are like me, it is the home button (circle) and the power button at the same time.  It captures whatever image you have on your screen at the time and saves it to your camera roll.  I can honestly tell you that all 18 first graders could now tell you how to take a screen shot!

So we downloaded the idress for the weather app.  It cost $1.99 and is serving my purpose but I could recommend a few things to make it better.  Anyway I set it to Celcius and changed the weather settings to match us Northern Canadians ( -1 and below is NOT very cold!) lol  Each morning it tells us the temp., shows whether it is sunny or cloudy and tells us what we should be wearing for that kind of weather.  We then screenshot this, and open the picture up in another app called Doodlebuddies (it's a freebie).  We then draw ourselves wearing the appropriate clothes.  It's a little tricky and we are having issues with our text not printing but all in all it is meeting many of our science outcomes in a very techie way!

How does this work with just one Ipad?  Well each morning someone is chosen to do the weather and they go work with our EA on this.  It takes about 10 -15 minutes, depending on how detailed they make their picture.  I love how they are all turning out.

Thanks for the awesome app to app idea!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Don't Let the Pigeon Run this App!

I LOVE Mo Willems!  He is the author of some of my most favorite children's books!  So when I saw he had a pigeon app for $6.99 I only hesitated for a moment before I pushed buy this app,  I've never spent $7 on an app before!

So was it worth it....well my own two children absolutely love it!  It has been used daily since the purchase.  I introduced it at school to the Read Along club... a group of second graders whom were introduced to my pigeon passion last year.  I rekindled their love of all things pigeon and had them begging I bring more next week.  My own class of first graders is just going to meet that crazy pigeon this Tuesday.

So what does the app do?  Well Mo Willems himself walks you step by step through the process of drawing a pigeon - LOVE this!  I've had the paper instructions and have done a fair job of teaching it myself in the past, but hey there is nothing the like a real illustrator inspiring young artists!  The downfall....... only 1 pigeon drawing can be saved!  The drawing shows up in other parts of the app, but my 2 children are constantly fighting over who has the pigeon drawing in the frame!

There is also a part where the bus driver comes on asking all kinds of silly questions walking you through the process of creating your own pigeon book.  Now I absolutely love this because I have always had the kids create their own class pigeon book so now the creative process just got a whole lot easier!  There is even a voice recording option so kids get a chance to get their own voice in there.  The downfall of this...... I can not seem to figure out the saving procedure.  Sometimes the bus driver comes on and saves it for you, other times you listen to your story you created, the book closes and it is gone forever.  Hmmmm disappointing, especially if it was a really good one!

My hope is these kinks will be ironed out in the next while since it is a relatively new app!

In the meantime we will keep on loving that crazy pigeon.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Stationery card

Bright Holly Jolly Holiday Card
Create your holiday cards online at
View the entire collection of cards.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A wealth of information

Click the link above to all kinds of techie information!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Garage Band in the Classroom

Okay so I have heard of the app and thought..... why on earth do I want that?  Well now I know.  This would be great for a listening station, too bad I do not have multiple ipods:(   Although I do own MANY books with cds, this will certainly help with the seasonal books I do not own. 


Could this possibly be the answer to the voice recording of children's reading that we have been looking for???????  I will attempt to check it out in all my spare time - lol.  Soon, I promise!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Apps worth exploring

Well it's been awhile since I have had even a spare moment to play on the Ipad and search for apps, let alone blog about it.... BUT my blog following addiction led me to a link for apps worth exploring.  I personally have not checked them out, but I LOVE the blog that posted them, so I think they are likely worth checking out.  When I find some spare time I hope I remember to do that:)  If you check it out and have comments... please post them!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Puppet Pals

Wow, there are so many great Apps out there. I think I have to do some picking and choosing over which ones are worth teaching and the value of the content. This one seems like an easy, fun one to use in the classroom with loads of potential. I've tried it out without purchasing it but it looks like it would be one of those ones that's worth buying and being able to use the extra options. Here's the description from the creaters of the Apps.

Puppet Pals:
We have always loved animation apps and empowering users to be a content creators and not just consumers. The problem has been, that in the app store, many frame by frame animation apps have been clunky and intimidating. Our goal with puppet pals was to present a familiar straightforward method to create your own "jib-jab© like" animations. All you have to do is select your actors and backdrops, press record, and drag them around. Everything you drag around is recorded in realtime (including your audio). You can even flip characters with a double tap or resize and rotate them using two fingers. The result is a simple and fun way to quickly create your own animated movies. There is something very satisfying about being able to see you animations come to life instantly without the painful frame by frame process.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Beware the Sync

Okay so I learned something new after a few frustrating hours today.  You CAN NOT delete pictures from your ipad unless you do it during a sync.  When you are syncing the ipad you can select which photos you want to be on your ipad.  The sync is initially set up to sync all your photos which ended up being half of my memory on the ipad.  So I had to resync it selecting only the few photos I wanted.  the help I found did say you could delete pictures from the Ipad that you took with the Ipad (don't ask me how)!

And why did I learn all this?  Well I was attempting to rent my first movie from the itunes store to watch with my hdmi connector on my tv!  I'll let you know how that goes in another post.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Ipad's in the Summer.......

Well summer vacation has officially begun and my Ipad has come home with me.  Not only has it come home, it has come on 2 long road trips with me.  And I must say it has been a SAVIOR!  I would purchase my children one of these before a dsi  again that is for sure.  The 7 hours road trip had the Ipad in CONSTANT use and yes the battery life lasted and still had 27% upon arrival.  We do not have movies on the Ipad (have not ventured into figuring that out just yet).  So the 7 hours were spent enjoying the apps and many online books.  I LOVE the option that it will read the books to my 4 year old, no longer am I crawling to the back of the van to be the reader. I also absolutley love the interactiveness of some books.  The really great ones cost a few dollars, but really..... it's a book.  It has been read and loved so many times already that the $3.00 spent on it is really no big deal.  It's what I call sanity money!  LOL

My four year old's favorites are:
There's a Monster at the End of the Book - It stars Grover from Seasame Street trying to stop you from turning the pages as he is scared of the monster at the end of the book.  He keeps you busy untying knots etc to prevent you from turning the page.  $3.99

Mickey's Spooky Night Puzzle Book - A Mickey Mouse book that has you searching for ghosts.   $2.99

These books have also thoroughly entertained my 7 year old son as well.  Although I must admit I am still on the search for a few good age appropriate books for him!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Who knew?????

I have not had time to check this out but certainly plan to as it sounds SUPER cool.  Who knew your ipad could control your PC!!!!!

Check it out!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Here's my next trial. I'm going to order one of the Digital AV Adapter's. Here's the Apple Store Overview:

Use the Apple Digital AV Adapter to mirror whatever’s on your iPad 2 screen — apps, presentations, websites and more — on your HDTV or HDMI-compatible display in up to 1080p HD (movies play at up to 720p).
Watch slideshows and movies on the big screen in up to 720p by connecting your iPad, iPhone 4 or iPod touch (4th generation) to an HDTV or HDMI-compatible display.
The Apple Digital AV Adapter routes digital audio to screens that support it.
Connect the Apple Digital AV Adapter to your iPad, iPhone 4 or iPod touch (4th generation) via the 30-pin dock connector and to your HDMI-compatible display using an HDMI cable (sold separately).
A second 30-pin connector built into the AV adapter lets you charge and sync your device while it’s connected to your HDMI-compatible display.

We're also going to try out a new LCD projector which has HDMI. The review for this chord is better than the VGA chord and it allows for a lot more interactivity. It even charges the ipad at the same time. We'll see if it's a good choice.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Strip Designer - Kids Write

So my thought with one Ipad and 22 kids is........ I create the comic leaving the speech balloons blank for the kids to fill in with their pencils.  Today we started our camping theme as well as visiting the zoo.  I thought animal thought bubbles would be super cute.  What were those guys thinking?

Great Googles

Isn't Google just the best. All I did was searched Grade 2 apps and here's the first bit that came up. I didn't have a chance to check them all- go figure. Technology information changes so fast, too. I bet by the end of the summer there will be tons of additional reviews.

Here's some helpful sites to check out reviews on those endless number of educational apps. Studies- many preschool-K-1 apps but it does go up to Grade 5
This site is beyond fantastic and a must to check out. Their subtitle is: A Community Effort to Grade Educational Apps---WOW. They even have suggested uses for the educational app. There's also tags so you don't have to search endlessly for specific topics.  It's geared for K-12.
OK gotta go--I may not be able to find time to go to bed tonight!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Shutting Off your Apps

Soooooooo apparently hitting the lovely little button to take you home is not the way to actually shut an app completely off... who knew?  Now it is not a problem until your children have so many apps continually running in the background that your battery life is being sucked out of your ipad faster than your internet connection.... well not quite but you get my drift.  Here's a link to show you how to really get them to quit running.  any other tips on shutting apps down are greatly appreciated!

Sunday, June 5, 2011


THE CHALLENGE IS ON!!!!!!!! Mrs. Jedele's Grade 5 class challenged our Grade 2 class with a hearty game of textropolis. OK so I have to say it's one of my favorite apps. They give you the name of a city and you have to find the hidden words. The more words you find, the bigger the city gets. Can you believe there are 351 words in Singapore? You may think it's not a fair challenge but our class is allowed to use the hints and their class isn't which seems to have evened things out. The app sends postcards telling how many words you've found every now and then which really keeps the competition going--that and the students taking turns checking out the scores down the hall!! It's great for thinking of word patterns.We're up to 167 but I think the Grade 6's are ahead of us----hmmm. Maybe we'll just play Textropolis tomorrow!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Strip Designer

Oh the possibilities......... I can see it's uses now!  Strip Designer is an app that cost $2.99.  You use your own photos to create comic strips.  I have only played for a few short minutes and already have a project running through my mind... maybe I can do it in the next 2 weeks of school if I book up all of Lois's (our tech helper) time and we play with Ipad...... I think she'll be in!  check out my trial run!

Thursday, June 2, 2011


Here's a great app for sharing  apps, photos, music and contact info. with your friends along with free texting. Yes, they claim it is private and safe. Basically, you each have to download the bump app and gently bump or shake your iPads together to share. I haven't had much experience with it other than discovering with Christine that you need a strong internet connection or it doesn't work. Here's a tutorial for those many hmmm-questions I'm sure we'll run into.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Wow.... I was happy with 1, here's a school with a whole pod!

This wiki is an excellent resource of a school district that has introduced an iproject using ipods in the classroom.  Lots of ideas K-12 here!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

50+ ways to use an Ipad in the classroom

Okay... I stumbled across a link I am very excited to explore.  What i really want to know is how to have a label section or a tag clou on the side of this blog, and while I searched unsuccessfully for that, I found this.... EEEKKKK I am so excited.

How do we know if those apps are good?

So just how do we know if those apps are any good?  And with there being millions of apps in the app store how do you even stumble across the good ones?  Well I happened to stumble across a few sites and blogs that recommend apps.  Most of them are recommended by imoms or ikids..... I haven't checked them all out but it looks like a great place to start.................. let me know what you think!

This imom and iteacher is loving her ipad2!

Introducing the Ipad to the kids......

Today was the day, we took the Ipad into grade one and I used it once in the morning and ALL afternoon.  The kids were over the top excited about it.  One little boy did not even want to go home at 4:00! lol

So what did we do on the first day?  

Well of course we set some criteria for how to use the Ipad......

and then I held on to it while intoducing the idea of alphabetical order.  We used a fridge magnet app and the kids took turns putting the letters I put on the fridge in ABC order.  Now I know the mimio would have been a better choice for this activity but we really wanted to get our hands on that Ipad!

And in the afternoon.... Mrs. Fisher came in and took kids two at a time to use AB Math Lite.  The kids had to sequence numbers while racing against a clock.  They LOVED the novelty of it!  And guess what we found out it does alphabetical order racing against a clock.... that might be tomorrow's fun.

It's a freebie but I just might buy this full version!


Monday, May 23, 2011

Looking for links

I swear I could spend hours just looking for great ideas online.......... the possibilities are endless, too bad there is not enough time in the day to try them all. 

Here are some sites I have found that review and recommend apps for kids.

The favorite app at our house this May Long weekend has been FlickFishingHD.  So much of a favorite that when the whole family was ready to let mom have a turn with her ipad, the battery life was at 10%.  Thank you very much... now get outside and catch some real fish so I can have a turn!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Links to good apps!

Well I do not have many of these apps personally, but about a month ago when I considered getting an Ipad, I bookmarked this site and am just getting around to checking it out.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

It's all about the Apps!

So I have the Ipad... now what?  When you have never used a Mac, the whole apple concept took some getting used to and I quickly discovered, it's all about the apps.  The app store has quickly become one of my favorite places.  I can search and download, preview, then keep or delete.  I am cautious about the apps I have to purchase, I suspect it can quickly become an addiction!  So that leads me to wonder, what are the MUST HAVE apps?  I have found a few that I am excited about and if I was a skilled blogger I am sure I could insert photos of them right here..... but for now I'll just have to tell you what they are called:
  • Imovie looks like something I am going to LOVE for making slideshows in the classroom, well worth the $4.99.
  • Teach Me 1st Grade has me excited about the spelling and math facts.
  • AB Math Lite looks like a great way to race against a timer to sequence numbers or answer facts.
I am sure I could find many more must have apps, if only I could get my hands on my Ipad.....

Judging from the enthusiasm at home, I know the kids with love it at school!

Just Getting Started

So we have had the ipads for 2 weeks now and are finally feeling like we know how to use them....are we ready to blog about them?  Maybe!