Deciding to be a teacher has always been one of the most noble and rewarding career choices. As technology advances, the resources available to teachers is increasing at an exponential rate - making the teaching experience not only easier but also richer and even more fulfilling.
Like a lot of modern technology, many of the new resources for teachers, especially those with masters in instructional technology, are in the form of apps for tablet computers and smartphones. These are some of the more promising new apps for teachers.
Tech-savvy teachers may remember older versions of this iOS app when it was called TeacherPal. This free app is available for iPad, iPhone, or the iPod Touch, and eliminates the need for much of the easily overwhelming and disorganized paperwork that teachers have been dealing with for decades.
TeacherPal is designed to record and keep track of things like attendance lists, seating charts, grades, student information, and more. This app has the potential to take what used to take up notebooks, binders, folders, and often even briefcases worth of material and condense it all to a relatively small amount of data on your tablet or phone.
Some teachers are able to keep track of each of their studentsâ€™ progress, behavior, and academic achievements easily. However, most teachers need a way of recording all of this information. ClassDojo is a free iOS app that is made to consolidate all of this data for every student in one place. One feature of ClassDojo that many teachers will appreciate is that this information is easily shareable with parents and other faculty members.
This free app - available for both iOS and Android - takes teacher-student communication to the 21st century. Remind101 enables you to send text message reminders of assignments, tests, etc. to students - and, if need be, parents. This type of technology has obvious advantages for teachers and eliminates most of the more common excuses for unfinished assignments and subpar studying. However, this kind of communication in the academic world has been muted to privacy concerns. Fortunately, these concerns have been addressed by Remind101: phone numbers are not visible on either end.
Dissecting frogs has long been a mainstay of middle school science curriculums. However, the act of cutting apart actual frogs is something which often makes both students and teachers squeamish to say the least, along with common moral objections. This iOS app is $3.99, but what it facilitates - the education of frog dissection without having to harm or deal with any actual frogs - is more than worth it. A bonus for teachers: this app includes its own quiz at the conclusion of the dissection.
As many teacher-directed apps as there are on the market these days, few are as ambitious as Socrative. This smart student response system for iOS brings an extensive host of options to a teacherâ€™s disposal, including quizzes, exercises, a variety of ways for students to respond, and a variety of ways to display student responses. This free interactive teaching app is available for both iOS and Android.
Scholastic Classroom Ideas to Go!
Scholastic has been providing both teachers and students with innumerable, invaluable resources for decades. With this $0.99 app, teachers gain access to hundreds of lesson ideas and activities for a range of different subjects and grade levels. Teachers can save their favorite lessons and activities to their device. Scholastic Classroom Ideas to Go! It is available for iOS.
Smithsonianâ€™s National Zoo
Field trips are not only generally enjoyed by students as a break from the ordinary academic routine, but they are often educational in a way that is not possible with ordinary classroom activities. Unfortunately, resources are often limited for field trips - especially to famous, iconic destinations - and the practicality of field trips also often presents a headache for faculty.
With this $1.99 app, available for both Android and iOS, teachers and students can take a virtual journey to one of the countryâ€™s most famous zoos with live streams of the animals along with an assortment of educational information.