Educational apps provide an engaging & inspirational learning experience

Kelly Hogan

Kelly Hogan is a Product Development Executive at Daydream Education. The company are currently developing a range of primary school apps for Maths, English and Science.

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Over the past three years, there has been a huge shift towards tablet technology; with educational establishments quickly realising the huge benefits of tablet-based learning and teaching in the classroom. As a product development executive currently developing a range of apps, I have conducted a vast amount of research into educational apps and their benefits for pupils and teachers.

I have found that apps provide teachers with the tools for independent and group learning, differentiated assessments, progress tracking and blended learning in order to create an engaging and inspirational learning experience for their pupils.

Learner-led Content

Whilst conducting research into the demand for apps, it quickly became clear that teachers are desperate for learner-led content that can be easily incorporated into the classroom. In app stores teachers can find an abundance of interactive content and engaging assessment activities for a range of subjects, from Maths to Science, and for a range of levels, from KS1 to GCSE. The best apps are laid out in a logical order and provide users with support throughout, these apps can break down learning barriers especially for pupils who are usually apprehensive to challenge themselves. Using apps within the classroom enables pupils to work independently and at their own pace. To inspire the users to participate in learning and reinforce understanding, content screens often include various interactivities and prompts. You can find apps that cover every aspect of topics contained within the national curriculum.

Assessment Activities

There are a variety of apps available that provide different learning activities to help the user to clearly identify their level of achievement and understanding. Within these apps can be found quizzes and activities for a wide variety of ages and abilities, these provide great starter and summary activities for both group and self-assessment. Quizzes can reinforce key information and enable the user to test themselves on key topics. Sometimes users will be given a specific time period to complete an activity which can add a competitive element and encourage pupils to improve their understanding. Most apps are easy to use with limited instruction which encourages children to take part in this type of assessment.

Progress Tracking

Within many educational apps children can save their results under their name, which is useful for classrooms that see several children sharing the same iPad. This can help pupils and teachers to keep track of their achievements and progress. In some cases apps enable pupils to email their results to the teacher. Understanding that in today’s education climate, school success is defined as ensuring achievement for every pupil, this type of functionality is extremely useful. It enables teachers to identify pupils’ level of attainment and tailor learning materials to better meet their pupils’ needs.

Inspirational Learning Experience

Apps encourage children who are normally apprehensive of challenging themselves. Being presented with a worksheet and a blank piece of paper can be intimidating for some. Apps can knock down these barriers to learning through their easy navigation, attractive user interface and by providing users with support throughout. Apps have a lot of potential for use within the classroom and I anticipate that many schools will be using them in the near future to help develop their pupils’ key skills.

Photo credit: Intel_DE

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