Monday, November 24, 2014

#teachagtech -> Family Friendly Apps for these Holiday Times

Family Friendly Apps for the Holidays (and Classroom Too)

Cornman and Glock Family Spread - Thanksgiving 2013

Family Friendly Apps for the Holidays (and Classroom Too!)  Every year it seems the holiday season approaches more quickly.  I remember being told as a child, "enjoy your time now because time goes quicker as you grow older."  Sadly, I see this happening and can attest to the adage "times flies as you get older".  So I see time spent with family and friends as becoming more precious every year.  I hope during this holiday season, you are able to spend it with loved ones.  Thanksgiving is the holiday in which we travel the most, so the odds are good you will be able to see family you haven't seen in a while.  I know around this time this is when board games or puzzles were dug out to keep that healthy competition alive within the family dynamic.  If you make your way through some of the "old school" games and want a few fun alternatives, I thought it would be fun to show you a few apps you can use both in the classroom, but also just to have some fun.

The first app is colAR.  This is a 3D coloring app where drawings become 3D images.  They basically jump off the table at you and many are animated.  It truly suspends your concept of reality...or basically lets you step back and have a good chuckle.  Besides having fun with family, this can be used within the classroom directly as with the animal cell print out or as an interest approach for a creative project.  I especially like the "Dot Day" printable where you can draw anything within the circle and than once the you open the app and point your camera towards the paper you just drew on, it will animate the "dot".  {If you would like additional info on the Dot Day printable, please se this site from FableVision Learning.}  Go to the colAR website and scroll down for printables for your personal or classroom use.  At a later date, I will post about a more sophisticated app dealing with virtual reality.

Here is a video on what you might experience with colAR app:


The second app I would like to show you is Sock Puppets.  This is live animation app that allows you to voice record role playing situations.  At home, it could be a fun way to interact with family or ask a child to clean up their room.  At school, it could be a way for students to demonstrate they understand a concept via the role playing app.  It is easy to set-up and record.  You pick your characters and setting and than click the red record circle to record your voices.  If you need a tutorial, here is a YouTube video to guide you.

Here is a screenshot of the screen to record your voice prior to animation.

Another great live animation app is PuppetPals 2.  In this app, you can actually take a picture of yourself and use it as one of the heads of the interactive characters.  This is yet another opportunity for students to demonstrate understanding or to exchange information in a fun and interactive manner.  Here is a trailer on YouTube about PuppetPals 2.  

I hope these ideas can help in your classroom and add a bit of fun with family.  

All my best to you and yours during this holiday season.


If you have specific needs regarding technology in your classroom, please feel free to connect with me via the TeachAg! Technology Help Ticket

Yours in the Quest to be a Tech Savvy Aggie,

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