It’s time for this week’s roundup of the best new iPhone and iPad apps and games released on Apple’s App Store.
As ever, the prices provided in brackets are for the initial download only: when an app uses in-app purchases, this will be listed as (Free + IAP). No, it’s not changing to “get” just yet.
More interested in Android apps? They’re covered in a separate weekly Best Android Apps roundup. But if it’s iOS you’re after, read on for this week’s selection which, since we’ve missed a few weeks, is a bumper top 30.
European higher education remains too conservative to adapt to technological innovations, said a Commission High Level Group on the Modernisation of Higher Education in its report published last week (22 October).
The group, which was launched in 2012 to examine such challenges, makes 15 recommendations to EU member states about how to integrate digital teaching and learning methods in their educational curricula.
Current learning systems are reluctant to leave behind conventional classroom methods and restructure the way universities and schools operate. Teachers do not have the necessary professional training to cope with new ways of schooling. The institutions themselves are poorly equipped with new technologies in order to deliver high quality, online education.
“Although Europe is starting to make progress, it is still lagging behind the US in using new technologies in our universities and colleges,” said Mary McAleese, the former President of Ireland, and chair of the High Level Group. “We should capitalise on the strengths we have, such as the wide use of ECTS [European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System] credits to ensure that digital learning in Europe is recognised, accredited and quality assured.”
Students are also reluctant to enroll in online degree programs, as an alternative to traditional, classroom-based ones, because many online courses do not offer credits towards obtaining a diploma. In fact, one of the group's recommendations to EU countries is that they recognise e-learning as a legitimate part of the educational system, and formalise it.
"People who downloaded iOS8 this week were surprised to find something very familiar missing from their Photos app. Gone is the Camera Roll that we have been so accustomed to. Also gone is the Photo Stream folder that contained the last 1000 photos taken on all our devices. These have been replaced by a Recently Added folder. Looks pretty messy, in my opinion. I enjoyed having the distinction between the two."
A free iPad app produced by the Van Gogh Museum. Through the study of three paintings featured on the app students can learn about the composition techniques used by Vincent Van Gogh, a bit about his life when he was creating the featured paintings, and the restoration techniques used by the museum. The featured paintings are View from Theo’s Apartment, The Bedroom, and Daubigny’s Garden. More paintings are slated to be added to the app in the near future.
In iOS8 and OS Yosemite, Apple introduced a new feature which allows you to answer phone calls on your iPad and your MacBook. While this is a cool feature, I don't really see the necessity of it, since you pretty much have your phone with you at all times, or at least most people I know do.
Last February Samantha Morra wrote a detailed guest post about using the augmented reality app Elements 4D in chemistry lessons. This week Terri Eiccholz shared the news that Elements 4D now offers a collection of lesson plans that utilize the augmented reality app in elementary school, middle school, and high school. Elements 4D is available for iPad and Android.
"SAMR model is a conceptual framework developed by Dr. Ruben Puentedura to help you better integrate technology in your instruction. SAMR stands for Substitution, Augmentation, Modification and Redefinition. Each of these four levels correspond with a set of tech-based activities and learning tasks. The strength of SAMR model is that it provides teachers with a robust method to gauge and assess the efficacy of the technology they and their students use in class. Check out this section for more resources on SAMR."
When I speak about using iPads in a primary school classroom, I am often asked about how it would work if I only had one iPad as is the case in many classrooms. This post is the first of what I hope will be several with suggestions as to how to make that work effectively.
"Please join the organizers of the 2014 K12 Online Conference in congratulating our selected presenters for this year’s conference! As in past years, our conference is organized into four strands. Each strand has an invited keynote speaker and additional selected speakers. Our conference begins October 13th with a pre-conference keynote presentation. Strands for 2014 are:
Week of Oct 20 – 24: Stories for Learning and Games and Gamification
Week of Oct 27 – 31: Passion Driven Learning and STEAM"
"Now that the Google Classroom is officially released to all Google Apps for Education accounts, those of you using iPad in their instruction would probably be wondering about possible ways to integrate this new tool with iPad. The video tutorial below will guide you through the process of how students and teachers can use Google Class on their iPad to create and turn in assignments."
A free iPad app that provides its users with an interactive introduction to four artifacts from The Getty’s Life of Art exhibit. The Life of Art app displays a lidded bowl, a silver fountain, a side chair, and a wall light. All four items are ornately decorated while also being functional. On the Life of Art app users can click through the parts of each artifact to learn more about the importance of the decoration and the functions of each artifact. For example, when users tap on the silver fountain they can learn about the coat of arms that is engraved on it, learn about the functions of the fountain, and even learn why it is called a fountain. Each object in the app can be rotated and zoomed in on for examination in further detail.
Elementary school and middle school students can use this app to learn about art and create art of their own. On the app students can learn about the processes artists use and how artists use shapes and colors to create art. After seeing how artists create art students can try their hands at creating drawings, paintings, collages, shape poems, and a half dozen other forms of art.
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