Educational iPhone Apps – Novemeber

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It’s been a good Thanksgiving weekend and now as I sit on my couch a few belt notches wider watching Machete by Robert Rodriguez, I am pleased to bring you five helpful apps for the king of mobile devices the iPhone. Read on past the break and see how you can better bring out your iPhone in the classroom, and remember Machete don’t text.

Kid Genius
This app has 13 apps in one and while they are pretty straight forward (such as a math matching game, flash cards of simple sight words) it is a winner since it is free. It is dead simple to navigate and even children in first grade will have no problem getting around the app. Check it out.

kmyAlgebra
This is for a slightly order audience than Kid Genius and though it does say Algebra in the title there is a little geometry. While the app does not do a ton, what it does, it does well. You get four functions-Solve Equations, Pythagorean Theorem, Solve Exponential Functions, and Find Equation of Functions. For those of you familiar with these mathematical situations, the app makes it quite straight forward. It was free when I downloaded it, but now I believe it is 99 cents.

Adobe – Learn by Video
For users of Adobe CS4 and CS5 this is a good companion, especially if you’re just getting started. They don’t have videos for the entire master suite, but most of the big hitters are present. They have video tutorials on Photoshop, Dreamweaver, InDesign, Flash. They also contain tutorials on Lightroom, Photoshop Elements, and Premiere Elements.

The way it works, is they show you a lot of videos on different topics. Once there, they usually have a free download pack, but most of the video packs will cost you $1.99. The pack contains a number of videos on a certain topic, and the videos themselves look very good (on my iPhone 4) and are very well done. If you’re looking to get started on Photoshop, this is a good place. Once you’re comfortable, peruse YouTube for specific questions before you lay down your $1.99 for the tutorials.

iTranslate
This is the first of two translation programs I’m talking about, and this is definitely the more well known of the two. Like most apps, it is very easy to use. You type what you want to be translated, select the language you want it to translate to and press the translate button and voila! Once translated you can even copy and paste it anywhere you like. They can even speak the words in the translated language for you, but you need to buy the voice for $1.99, but if you’re traveling in China where English is not very widely spoken, then this is a winner!

My Language
This app is a little more involved. It has a lot more languages to chose from but it sometimes takes a few too many clicks to get where you want. For example I wanted to translate a simple sentence to simplified Chinese. I wrote the sentence, selected Chinese (Simplified) and then it wanted me to pick a between many different countries. I know that Chinese (like many languages) has differences from one country to the next, but I’m only translating a simple phrase, I don’t need that extra clip. What is nice about the app is that it stores all your translated phrases for quick access. It’s free and if iTranslate doesn’t have the language you’re looking for, then this one probably will.

About Patrick Cauley

I teach middle school technology and love to play around with tech and teach students and colleagues alike. You can read my blog at www.itbabble.com
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