Monday, July 26, 2010

iPad Apps for Homeschoolers

I've been searching online for an article like this and, having been disappointed with what I've found thus far, decided to write my own.

[Disclaimer: I am not putting educational apps here; that's a post for another day. I am merely attempting to detail some apps I use (or in theory could use) to make homeschooling a bit easier.]

[Another disclaimer: I did not receive any compensation or offers from any developer of these apps; I just think they're useful and thought I would share!]

Netflix
Cost: FREE (with subscription to Netflix)
We LOVE Netflix! And I love it even more now that it's conveniently located by app on my iPad. I can't begin to count the number of documentaries and movies we've watched to supplement subjects we've covered! Netflix is definitely a must-have app!

Atomic Web Browser
Cost: FREE for lite version; $1.99 for full version
Safari is okay, but this is a superior iPad web browser. One important difference between this browser and Safari is that in a window with multiple columns, you can actually see all of the columns with AWB. (There are a couple of legal research sites I use where this is of particular importance for me.) With the lite version, one can have 4 (I think) web tabs open, but the full version allows more. The full version also allows you to open the browser to the last page or session you had open or to a home page you specify. Think of AWB as the Firefox of iPad browsers. [And at $1.99, the full version is worth buying!] By the way, I had to contact the developer to ask a technical question about the app. I got a response in about 10 minutes and my question was answered!

Mint.com
Cost: FREE
This app helps you keep your finances in check. The iPad version only lets you know your account balances and your budget info. You have to manage your information on the mint.com website. On the website, you can load up your bank accounts, credit card accounts, etc. You can also set up budgets and mint.com will automatically categorize your spending - although, you may need to do some manual tweeking. The only drawback I've found so far is that I have to manually update my account balances. And don't worry, it is secure - you can read all about the security on the website. Okay, this may not be DIRECTLY related to homeschooling - but if you set up a homeschooling budget, it may curb the need to buy EVERY bit of curriculum out there!

iDo - Notepad
Cost: FREE
Okay, I haven't used this extensively, yet ... However, I can see some practical uses especially with making To Do lists - since the app provides you with the ability to prioritize. The app also has a calendar function.

My Library
Cost: $4.99
This is one of my absolute favorites. I have it on my iPad just as a reference - where I REALLY use it is on my iPhone. My Library gives you the ability to scan the ISBN numbers on your books (okay, you may have to get an additional app, Red Laser [I believe] to have the scanning ability, but it is SO worth it). Once the number is recognized, you'll have the title, author, and genre - many books also have a picture of the cover and a brief description of the book. I love having this app - I've catalogued most of the homeschooling books I have in our school room. It's saved me from making a couple of duplicate purchases!

Craft Finder
Cost: FREE
Sponsored by Disney's Family Fun magazine, you can search for crafts to do with the kids (searching can be performed by age group, time you have for the craft, and/or occasion for the craft).

Wikipanion
Cost: FREE
I prefer the layout of this to the Wikipedia app. This app provides access to Wikipedia complete with the same information you would find at Wikipedia, they layout is just a bit easier to read, the information on each entry easier to sort through, and the searching a bit more user friendly.

Documents2
Cost: FREE
Allows you to view your Google docs or create new documents in text document, spreadsheet, sound, or paint format. Fabulous... and free!

So, this hasn't by any stretch of the imagination been an exhaustive list (or even an exhaustive review), but I hope it gives you a bit of an idea of the tools available for use for the iPad homeschooler!

4 comments:

Nikowa Lee {Quirky Mom} said...

ooh! Great links!

Nicola said...

Do check out http://punflay.com for educational iPhone/iPad apps for kids.

Unknown said...

Awesome Thank you!, There is also this awesome Bible App for kids called Jesus Story. Using scripture from the Good News Bible. Here is the link:
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/jesus-story/id450635528?mt=8

Melissa, Protector of Swordland said...

Hi! I just found your site while browing for info on the ipad and homeschooling. We are just starting to hs our son for kinder., and I would be interested in the classical learning. any info or sites?