App Review – The Periodic Table Project

Most science geeks like me are quite familiar with the iPad app, The Elements: A Visual Exploration. It is a stunning app, and I have not found another Periodic Table app that visually compares. However, I recently came across a Periodic Table app that peeked my interest.

The Periodic Table Project is an app that was developed by the University of Waterloo for the International Year of Chemistry in 2011.  It was a joint project between the Department of Chemistry and the Faculty of Science, where the call went out to chemistry educators worldwide to artistically interpret an element. Each piece of art was accompanied by a description from the artist, which explained its significance. As well, specific data can be found for each element in relation to high school curriculum.

It is a free app, so there is no cost to take a look. Alternately, you can check out the interactive version on the University of Waterloo website.

Have a great week.

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App Review – Math Doodles and Symmetry Shuffle

There are two apps by Carstens Studios that I have loaded onto our school iPads.

The first app is called Math Doodles and it sells for $2.99. The user is given three challenges (a fourth is in development) that revolve around addition, logic, and algebraic thinking. In the first challenge, Sums Stacker, the user needs to manipulate values within three piles in order to reach a target sum. In the second challenge, Connect Sums, the user must select values that reach a target sum. In the third challenge, Unknown Square, the user must find the missing value in a 3-by-3 array of numbers. One of the things I love about this app (in addition to the awesome graphics) is the ability to play in a variety of number systems. The user can choose to play with values represented as dice, fingers, holes, ten frames, tally marks, binary system, Braille, number prefixes, polygons, US coins and dollars, a variety of fraction types, Roman numerals, numbers shown in  either Chinese, Arabic, Gurmukhi, Hindi, Hebrew, or Spanish, or a mixture of all of the above. There are different levels of difficulty, as well. All of these options allow the app to be used across a number of grade levels.

The second app is called Symmetry Shuffle and it sells for $1.99. The user must either rotate (turn), reflect (flip) or translate (slide) the image so that all targets have been matched. The user can select from 12 possible images to “shuffle”, and can also change the size of the “shuffle” grid. Its features are not as diverse as on the first app, but I still find it a great addition to our math apps on the iPads.

Both apps allow the user to track the number of moves they have used so that they can attempt to solve the puzzle in the fewest possible moves, which is another great feature for differentiation.

Have fun playing.


Posted by admin in Math, Using Tech, 0 comments

App Review – Interactive Telling Time

Part of my role this year is to find new apps to put on the school iPads. To date, I have mostly searched for math apps. I have finalized my list of recommendations, and over time I will share them here, as well.

The first app that I will highlight is Interactive Telling Time by GiggleUp. There is a free version and a paid version ($2.99). I first installed the free version, then upgraded to the paid version and found it well worth the money.

This is a great app for kids who are learning how to tell time. There are many options for play. Users can set the time and learn how to read the time on analogue clocks. There is also a puzzle setting where users have to put the correct number on the proper place on the clock. This can be done with regular numbers or roman numerals. The “stop the clock” game allows the user to stop the clock hands from moving when they reach a specific time. In the quiz feature, the user is told a time and must choose which clock displays the correct time.

The settings menu allows for a variety of choices. Users can choose between eight different clocks to work with, each of them focusing on something a little different (roman numerals, no numbers, only the numbers 3, 6, 9, and 12, or all hours). The user can also choose to work with either a 12-hour clock or a 24-hour clock. Difficulty levels also allow the user to work with various time intervals during play (1 minute, 5 minute, 15 minute, 30 minute, or 1 hour).

Overall, I feel that this app offers many options which would benefit students at various stages of learning to tell time.

Have a great week.

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