Hi.

Welcome to my blog! I am a second grade teacher from Northern Virginia who loves to bring my creativity to the classroom! I believe in fostering a love of learning, creating a positive classroom community, STEM intergration, teaching with technology, and giving students choice!

Favorite Free Apps For Creating

Favorite Free Apps For Creating

Technology integration is an essential part of my classroom instruction. Students create using technology at our Creation Station during guided math time, where they create a digital product (video) based on a task card they are given. They also work to create digital projects during Reading, Science, and Social Studies times, depending on what we are currently learning about. Today I'm sharing my favorite apps to CREATE with! 

Write Check out this 'Tweets' image after each app...it will link you to all the Tweets with the app as a hashtag so you can get more ideas!here...

Write Check out this 'Tweets' image after each app...it will link you to all the Tweets with the app as a hashtag so you can get more ideas!here...

Check out this 'Instagram' image after each app...it will link you to all the Instagram photos with the app as a hashtag so you can get more ideas!

Check out this 'Instagram' image after each app...it will link you to all the Instagram photos with the app as a hashtag so you can get more ideas!

ChatterPix (also known as ChatterKid) is an awesome app that allows students to take a picture of something, draw a mouth on it, and have the picture talk. The app can truly be used with any content area and there are already so many ideas out there already! Here are a few to get you started.

  • Math: Make the coin talk about its' attributes, have a line explain if it is perpendicular or parallel and why. 
  • Reading: Take a picture of a character from a story. Have them explain the problem they are facing in their own words. Have students take a picture of a nonfiction text feature. Have the feature talk and explain what kind of text feature it is and how it is useful.
  • Social Studies: Do you study Famous Americans or Famous People? Take a picture of them (or import a picture of them) and have them talk about their life & contributions. Take pictures of vocabulary related to the unit you are studying and have students explain what the item is, how it was used, and why it is important.
  • Science: Take a picture of an animal and have it talk about its' basic needs. Take a picture of something in the classroom and have the item explain whether it is a solid, liquid, or gas.

Educreations acts as a whiteboard where you can draw and record what you are saying/drawing at the same time. You can import pictures into this app too, which can allow students to draw on top of the picture. Out of all of the apps listed here, this one is probably the one that is most difficult for my 2nd graders to use. One reason is because the space for them to store videos on this app is a little more limited than the rest. The videos they tend to make on this app are a bit longer. If they don't hit the save button all of their work is lost. I like to have students in pairs when using this app. Here are some ideas for use...

  • Have students model how to solve a math problem. Ex: Draw an array for 5 x 6. Solve 34+45 and explain your thinking.
  • Import a picture of a complete life cycle you study without the names of the stages. Have students write in the names of the stages and explain what happens at that stage. Use it as a formative assessment. 
  • Have students take a picture of a project they made together. Have them record a video explaining their thought process. Send the video home to families.

PicCollage is an app that allows you to create a collage of photos, text, and stickers. My favorite way to use PicCollage is to actually use a PicCollage + ChatterPix combo. For example: I had my kids create a list of goods and services on PicCollage. They took pictures and typed the words out as well. When they were done creating their collage they took a screenshot of it and imported it into ChatterPix. Then on ChatterPix they explained why each thing was a good or a service. Creation + Explanation = Win-Win.

  • Go on a scavenger hunt outside to identify living vs. nonliving things.
  • Use at the beginning of the year to identify important parts of the classroom.
  • Create a PicCollage of different types of words: adjectives, verbs, & nouns.

***Didn't share the Tweets & Instagram for PicCollage, because many went to things unrelated to school/education!***

Telegami allows students to create an avatar (or character), create a background/import a background picture, and record themselves talking. I like having students use this app to explain their thinking on a topic. Beware: Students get super excited about making avatars. They might focus a bit too much on making them and not the actual task at hand! ;-)

Videolicious is an app that allows you to take/use up to 10 pictures in a video. Videolicious is unique from other video apps because you click on the pictures and record your voice as the pictures are shown on the screen. You can decide when you want your pictures to appear. I recommend playing around with it some before introducing it to students. They get the hang of it pretty quickly though! Some ideas...

  • If you have a "How-To" writing unit in your curriculum, have students put together a video showcasing their "How-To" piece by taking pictures of it. Ex: Taking pictures of how to make a sandwich and explain how to make a sandwich. 
  • Showcase student's STEM projects and explain each part.
  • If the answer is 14 come up with 10 different problems for it. 

I hope this post was helpful and gave you some ideas for how to use these awesome FREE apps in your classroom! Be sure to pin this post or save it, as I will be periodically updating it with more FREE Apps and ideas for using them with students. 

Are there any Apps that your students use to create that are FREE that should be added to the list? Please let me know in the comments below!

-Ashley from Talkin Pinata Teaching

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