iPad and Homeschooling

I had a birthday.  I have an iPad.

:-)

(Apple has a back to school deal on right now, by the way.  Homeschoolers qualify!)

Now I need recommendations.  There are a lot of apps, as I’ve discovered with integrating my iPhone into my life.  The iPad is opening up a huge swath of possibilities, though:  Assignments,  Research,  Reference.

I did find an excellent UK website that has a breakdown of apps by area: iPads in Education.  Literacy apps, Sports, History, Mind Mapping, and categories.  Emerging Ed Tech also has a great list of apps that teachers actually use and find useful.

I’m still buried deep in questions.

iStudiezPro, for instance, looks like a brilliant way to mesh schedules with to do lists.  Can I assign them to my kids from the iPad to their iPods?  If I can, I’m a happy mama.

Cells and Cell Structures:  brilliant learning, or gimmicky shine and no substance?

Are Pages and Numbers worth the $10 tag?

3 thoughts on “iPad and Homeschooling

  1. Stephanie says:

    Why do I always forget about looking for a homeschool discount when I buy apple products? Just recently got mine as well, planning on using it for the boys too.

    Haven’t gotten too many “educational apps” quite yet, but just read a review of Dragonbox for teaching kids about algebra rules that made it seem worth the $3 to check it out.

    Lissa over at Bonny Glen mentioned Living Language apps for learning foreign languages. You can try a few lessons for free befor purchasing the entire app. Jason has been wanting to try Italian, so we will check it out

    We also really like the Audobon Bird Field Guide app which is fantastic. We got it on sale for .99. Seems like they have frequent sales, so you might want to keep an eye out. Even at full price it would be worth it.

    I have been using Instapaper a lot to clip articles I think that the boys might find interesting. I clip them, then put them in folders for each of the boys. They can go in and read them on their own.

    We use Kahn Academy for Kyle’s math, so we use the free app to watch the videos.

    And of course I use Evernote for so much homeschooling related or otherwise so I love having it on the iPad. I also have been smitten with Pocket Informant which allows me to sync my google calendars with my Toodledo to-do list. I don’t use it with the boys but I love what it has done for me. Again pricey but goes on sale and is totoally worth it.

  2. thebirdssong says:

    Re:Pages and Numbers:
    I purchased both with the thought that I would use them often. I haven’t used them much (um, at all) until recently. Pages can be helpful. I sat in the library on Friday while my students had a research day and I used it to comment on an earlier assignment then send it back to them. It does lack the pizzazz of the full version. For long documents or documents more than just straight typing, I use a computer.

    Evernote, Kahn Academy are great. Penultimate, Flipbook, Feedler, and TED get the most love here. Penultimate is great for note taking, doodling, etc. If you like stargazing, Star Walk is an amazing app. We have the Audubon app mentioned above in Droid form; love it.

    For schedules, go with free. If you have a Google account, use Google calendars and sync it with all of your devices, including your kids’ devices and their emails. You can color code so they know who is involved. You can have it pop-up on the phone and iPad.

  3. Ann says:

    I’ve tried several various “educational” aps and found them of limited use. We keep bumping up against the things they can’t do and frustration mounts. I’m a bit of a Luddite anyway, so I have very limited patience for aps that are not as functional as they should be. I do use Good Reader a lot–it allows you to “write” on pdf files or highlight and make notations on the page. I used it a lot for knitting patterns and books that we get that are in the public domain. We also use it for some of the Scholastic pdf e-book workbooks we use for review–doing it on the ipad is novel enough that it seems less tedious to my 11 yo. Loved Penultimate at first, but found it kind of glitchy–sometimes it write well, others it doesn’t. It’s hard to write small enough to actually get much on a page. However, it is great for scribbling on when the kids are waiting in line somewhere. I spent some time last winter looking for an ap that did multiplication review/flash cards, and tried several. Again, not really that great and not as good an plain old index cards with a rubber band to hold them together.

    I must sound like I don’t like the i-pad. I do like it, but many of the aps I’ve tried have disappointed me, even when the feedback on them from others is good. I find I spend a fair amount of time working around their limitations. I used the included i notes a LOT for lists.

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