Monday, October 31, 2011

Bills and Money

The application “Bills and Money” has a lot of different options. The first one, “Counting Bills and Coins”,
shows you pictures of bills and coins and asks you to add them amount. “Show me the money” gives you an amount and a
“coin bank” from which you drag the appropriate coins to make the amount. The “Making
Change” option adds the element of story problems to the app; it asks students
to find the change after a certain transaction has a ocurred. “Matching Amounts” helps students practice
making the same amounts with different representations of coins and bills. With the “Show Values” option, students are free to drag any bills or
coins into the box, then find the total value at the click of a button.

Pros: There are so
many different options and ways to use this app in class. Whether it’s through the document camera with
the whole class, with small groups, individuals, or stations in the classroom,
this app is really helpful in students gain fluency with currency. Not only can you choose the activity, but you
can also choose a level of difficulty. The
strength of the app is definitely its flexibility to meet the students’ needs.
Cons: I can’t really
think of any cons to this application, except that some of the pictures of the
bills are not super clear and hard to read. If I were to knitpick, I would say that the
way the answer pops up in the blue box after you answer the question is a bit
annoying and slows down the process; it would be better if it just shows up on
the original screen in red.

Coin Genius Lite

Free app
Type in Coins Genius Lite on itunes

I think that this app is great for kids who are learning about money. The student has 1 minute to count up how much change is displayed. There are 4 choices of amounts of money to pick from. The student gets points for each correct answer.

The pros for this app are it will be fun for students to compete against each other or themselves to score higher than the time before. There are a variety of amounts shown so students will not get bored or be able to memorize the answers.

The cons for this app are that it is for an ipod so it is a little small and then a little blurry if you enlarge it. It also only has change and I would like it a little more if it included bills as well so it is for those students that are just beginning to learn about money.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Math Soccer

This is a free app in Itunes.

Pros: This app is a fun app that allows students to practice adding, subtracting, multiplication, and division. Their are two penguins on each side of the soccer field as well as two goals in the center that display a math equation. The soccer ball is being passed between the two penguins and it has a number on it that is the solution to one of the goal problems. The penguin on the bottom must hit the ball into the correct equation that the answer matches. For example the two goals: one says 2 +3 the other 8+7 the ball says 5, so you would hit the ball in to the goal that has 2+3. It has a certain time limit to complete as many goals as possible and it will give you your ranking. Their are different levels for the game that you can choose to start at and levels for the difficulty of the math.

Con: It takes a little time to figure out how to play and there are not any directions explaining how to use/play the app. It is also difficult at times to get the penguin at the bottom to hit the ball in the right direction to score the goal.You have to hit the penguin at the right time to score the goal or it will not go in.

This app is similar to other game apps that practice basic math skills. I think it is pretty similar in comparison. Students who like soccer would maybe enjoy it a little more and I also think that it would be more fun for lower elementary students up to 5th grade.

The app Pearltrees is a must have for just about anyone that is constantly looking for new resources online. With this app you are able to create what is called a pearltree (hense the app name). On that tree you are able to connect webpages that are of interest to you. You are able to set up new main pearls that you can click on and then add secondary pearls to that to create your tree. There is also a neat feature that is on the top of the screen and says related interests. When you click on that several new pearls appear around your tree. Those are pearls that other people have posted. If you like any of the sites that those people have on their trees you can click on it and drag it down to the bottom of the screen and then add it to your pearltree when you are ready. Since I have started my pearltree I have secondary pearls for; school, 21st century learning, lesson plan resources, teacher websites, and ipad. I have personally added 43 pearls (websites) and have grabbed several more from other people.

One of the nicest things about this app is that when you open an account you can access it on your regular computer so you can add and use pearls from your normal PC or MAC. This is great because if you add a pearl on your computer and then you need to find it on your ipad it is automatically there. There is a little set up time that goes into getting it working properly but once you do I promise it will become an invaluble resource for you.

The app is free and can be found in the app store by typing in pearltrees.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


coloruncovered is an informational, interactive app about how our eyes function (and play tricks on us) and how we perceive everyday images. I would say it would be best for middle school, up. There are some concepts that may not make sense for younger children. (You could, however, just select certain pages the younger ones would understand.)
Cost: Free
Pros: 100% interactive activities that make you want to know the reasons for the different scenarios. It doesn't just give all the answers, it makes you think why first. It has both movies to watch and explanations to read. Very creative. It makes you think differently about the way your eyes work. It also goes beyond our eyes and explains animals eyes and facts about technology.
Cons: Mentions of evolution and how we were underwater when our eyes went through different developmental stages.
Uses in education: This can be used in a science class when learning about the human body and how it functions. It could be part of a section on how eyes work/function. It can also be used in an art class for some "background" information on how we literally perceive art as well as a very short history lesson.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Number Math

App reviewed: Number Math
Price: Free

First of all, I apologize for the constant underline attached to this post's text. I did not mean to underline everything I say, I just don't know how to undo it and would appreciate anyone who can tell me how - I think it has something to do with the HTML but I'm just not that tech savvy.
I was reminded of the Number Line app we used in class last week while using Number Math. It contains exercises that can be adjusted (number of questions, difficulty level) and address consecutive number order, quantities, and rounding. Each question set is timed but the user is not penalized for time taken. Potential answers are avaiable in fields of 1, 2, or 3 - the format is mostly a drag'n'drop the correct answer. Correct answers make a pleasant "popping" sound and wrong answers get a buzzer.
I would utilize this as a practice app with very little classroom use, however I believe that a teacher could put this app under a document camera for full class use if desired.

Pros: Simple, easy to use format with difficulty and set limits. A student cannot submit the wrong answer so mistakes and correct answers are almost immediately identified. The drag'n'drop limits the amount of work a student would have to do (as opposed to a type-in format) so fine motor skills are utilized in a low-stress situation.

Cons: The difficulty level is really just higher numbers, not more complex operations as is seen in math textbooks. The scope of the math covered by this app is not very deep.