Creating an eBook – Book Creator

To assist my year 12 students I decided to create an eBook using the Book Creator app as a revision tool for their exercise physiology course. The book covers some key aspects (not all) of the content I would like them to focus on as part of their ongoing revision leading up to their exam in term 4. It is not their only revision tool but is another tool for them to access. Ideally it would be great if all the year 12’s had their own iPads but I have had to settle for putting the eBook onto 5 of the student iPads.

One of the strengths of an eBook is the ability to include audio and video. Books have always included text and images but the inclusion of audio and video makes the eBook a much more powerful learning tool. Often a book/pamphlet may include web links to further resources like a video. My opinion is that students will often not use these links (independently) even if they are helpful due to the fact they have to do another step to get to the information. By using Book Creator the video is embedded next to the text allowing for instant viewing.

With the introduction of the File Browser app it is now a fairly simple process to get an eBook from Book Creator on one iPad to many iPads. I saved my eBook as an epub file on the P drive and then accessed it through the File Browser app to get it onto as many student iPads as I wanted to. You could save an eBook to the P drive and within 10-15 minutes (depending on file size) have your whole class reading an eBook created by you (or them).

Could you use an eBook to set up a topic for students? Could your eBook be the starting resource for your students when beginning a new topic? Could your students create their own eBook to present a topic for assessment or to teach another class? Great cross age tool?

Popplet – Record Student Thinking

Want an easy to use app that allows students to display their thinking on the iPad in a professionally looking way? Then Popplet may be the tool for you and your students. I have created a short video explaining briefly the app and demonstrating how it works. I rushed this presentation a little and missed a couple of functions including the ability to import images into the mind map and also hand draw in the app. Hopefully the video gives enough explanation to show you that it has some great uses in the classroom.

Adding audio to a single image using FotoBabble

In my previous post I talked about an app called WordFoto which allows students to generate a word list and apply those words to a photo. The photo is then made up entirely of words (none of the original image remains). If you would like to view this post click here.

In this post I would like to show you how to take this photo created in WordFoto and add some audio to it using a second app called FotoBabble. After creating an image and applying a set of words to it in WordFoto this image is saved to the camera roll on the iPad. Open FotoBabble and import that image. Once the image is in FotoBabble students can add audio to explain the image and the concepts they have learnt.

The example below has been created by me but is a task my 7/8 Health class will be undertaking this term. The task will be to select an image representing smoking and create a word list in WordFoto and apply those words to the photo. Students will then save this image into the camera roll and import it into FotoBabble. In FotoBabble they will have to record an explanation of 3 words from their list that appear in the photo and why they have used them. My example is quite short for the purpose of this post, students work will be more detailed.

As well as adding audio there are a number of basic formating options within the app including: the ability to enhance the photo, add effects, add frame (free download in app), add stickers (very basic – in app purchase required to get more), rotate the image and add themed wall paper as a background.

Note: Once the audio is completed the image/audio needs to be uploaded to the Fotobabble website. For this to occur a class account needs to be created under the teachers name. Students then use the user name and password to log in on their iPad and upload their work. This works through our school wireless system and is fairly quick and painless.

Combine language and photos – WordFoto

Use the iPad app WordFoto to create an image made up of key words describing that image or the concept represented. The app is fairly simple to use requiring the student to take a photo in the app or import an image from the camera roll on the iPad. Once the image is in WordFoto you can apply a word set to the photo. The photo is then made up entirely of those words. Words are in different sizes, shades and colour to ensure the image is still recognisable.

The app allows the student to manipulate the following:

  • Put in your own word list (up to 10 words).
  • Crop the image.
  • Select from one of the 8 preset styles.
  • Select custom styles and modify background, foreground, shadows, highlights, brightness, contrast, saturation and fonts.

In health my Year 7/8 class are doing a topic on tobacco and alcohol. Two tasks I will be asking students to do are to look at what chemicals are in cigarettes and what are the impacts of smoking. To extend the research work students will do in these two areas they will be asked to take a photo of a smoking image (I have printed about 15 high quality colour images from the Internet) and apply a selection of words about the negative impacts of smoking and the contents of cigarettes, i.e. Death, Cancer, Rat Poison, Expensive etc. This is a quick and easy task to do that will help to reinforce some key words relating to smoking tobacco. The final product is professional looking and will be emailed to me so that it can be printed and put up in the classroom.

Below are two images that I created. The first picture is using one of the smoking images I have printed for students while the second is from a magazine for the purpose of creating an example for this post.


Keeping Running Records – Record of Reading App

I am not familiar with how Running Records are used to assess student reading but understand it is a widely used technique to assess a students reading performance. I have come across an app called Record of Reading which allows teachers to keep their running records on the iPad and then email the document as a PDF or JPG for filing. As I have mentioned I am not familiar with how these records are recorded so I can only recommend that if you want to use your iPad to do running records that you check out this app. I have added some blog posts from teachers who recommend its use if you are interested.

Reading assessment on the iPad (Australian)

Record of Reading App: Love this! (Australian)

Running records on the iPads (American)

Click here to visit the iTunes store to view the Record of Reading.

How do I use my iPad to assist student learning?

There are a range of apps and tools that I use with my iPad to assist student learning.

Obviously having one iPad in a classroom has its limits so once we get our class set up and running the flexibility and independence the students will have with their learning will be significant. My use use of the iPad is subject specific to HPE but there will be ideas that are transferable.

Apple TV, Wireless Router, Speakers, Data Projector

These tools allow me to use my iPad in the gym effectively. They are also easy to use as they are permanently set up on a trolley. Once the power is turned on the Apple TV and iPad/iPhone connect with no prompting. I can project video, student work or presentations onto a large screen in the gym to assist my students learning. The Apple TV allows me to do this wirelessly which is brilliant. A great example of the benefit of wireless connectivity is when I work with the JP students. I use a lot of music to encourage movement and engagement. Instead of having to have my phone plugged into the stereo I can walk around the gym and be with the students and still control the music.

So what apps do I use as a HPE teacher?


I produce videos for my senior PE students to assist with their learning. I have made multiple videos explaining concepts from skill progression to components of fitness and body systems. Making instructional videos for students could be done in any subject for any year level. To store these videos I use various places on the Internet including You Tube.

I make videos to share what happens in my junior PE classes with parents by uploading these to You Tube and embedding them on my juniorhpe blog for parents to view. Click here to visit this blog.

I have downloaded Just Dance videos from You Tube, put them together in iMovie to create one file and then played these through Apple TV to use with students. This has been very engaging and a great way to teach dance to students. Click here to view my Year  1/2 PE students using Just Dance.

TimeMotion and DartFish EasyTag

These apps provide a simple and easy way to collect data during games and then analyse and reflect on that data to help improve student knowledge of things like movement, tactical play and use of skills.

Ubersense/Coaches Eye/Coach My Video

Using these apps I am able to assist the development of student skills through video analysis. Ubersense in particular has the ability to compare two videos side by side. All have a variety of tools that allow for analysis of video.

Fotobabble and PixnTell

Students are able to record photos of skills, or games and add audio over the top. Fotobabble allows one photo at a time while PixnTell allows multiple photos to be put into a sequence with audio. Great for analysis and reflection.

Giant Scoreboard, G.A.P.S., CoachNote, Badminton, PE Plus, PE Games, Group Games and TGfU

These apps provide me with a range of tools and resources to assist me with my PE lessons. From Giant Scoreboard to apps like PE Plus & TGfU that have a range of games and activities on them grouped by sport or skill type.

CardioBuddy, This is my Body – Anatomy, Virtual Heart, 3D Brain, Skeletal 3D and a range of other anatomy apps (there are so many)

CardioBuddy allows measurement of heart rate, while the anatomy apps are useful for my older students to review body systems. This is my Body – Anatomy is a great app for JP/Middle primary students.

Workouts, FitDeck Junior and Ripdeck

These fitness apps provide a broad range of fitness based activities. They allow the user to run pre made circuits to custom made ones at a variety of intensities. I have not used these yet with students but intend to very soon. I have some disengaged girls in my year 9/10 PE class who have said they would be interested in doing some fitness based activity instead of the current traditional sports unit. My intention is to get them to design their own fitness routines and provide time in and out of class to improve their fitness.

These are the apps that I have found to assist me with helping students learn in HPE. It has taken a while and often trial and error has been involved.

I can’t wait to get the class set up and running and see how it further enhances student learning in my classroom and is utilised across the school. What apps have you found that work for you?


Educational Apps Part 11 – History & Geography

Here are some useful apps for history and geography. I have found a lot of great looking free apps which require in app purchases to access vital content. I have left these out for now as in app purchasing (at our school) will be something we need to discuss as part of our iPad use policy further down the track.

Important – Apple has an ‘Apple in Education’ page on its website which has a fairly broad selection of apps under the following headings: English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, History & Geography, Language Development, Art/Music & Creativity, Reference/Productivity & Creativity, Accessability (special needs). Click here to visit this page.

Barefoot World Atlas  ($5.49)






Of all the apps mentioned in this post this is probably the nicest design and has great user appeal.  It is an interactive 3D world that has a huge range of information for students to investigate. The app encourages students to rotate the 3D world which is covered with all sorts of animals, buildings, people etc. When a student clicks on an object the app names the object and offers an audio recording explaining the object in more detail. Countries flags are displayed and when a student taps on a country general information is displayed including population, land mass etc. An option to compare countries in a variety of areas also exsists. If you wanted to take your students on a trip around the world so they could discover new things then this app would be perfect.



Earth 101 ($1.99)






Very similiar to Barefoot World Atlas but not quite as detailed. It does however have some good features including lots of man made strutures from the Colosseum to modern buildings like the Burj Khalifa skyscraper in Dubai (worlds tallest building). The app also allows for temperatures to be added for all major cities which is a nice function when comparing weather conditions around the globe. The weather feature also shows day/night/snow/cloud/sun/rain etc. A good app to use in conjunction with the Barefoot World Atlas as together they provide a broader range of information about our world.


Kid’s World Maps (free)






A ‘flat’ view of the world the same as a traditional atlas. The app allows for 6 different views: political, cities, physical, deserts, mountains and rivers. When the map is enlarged more detail appear including borders, cities and water ways.


Globe for iPad (free)






A simple easy to use 3D globe. Great for younger students. Simple information shown including borders and country names. When students tap on a country they are taken to information about that country including flag, coat of arms, recognised languages, ethnic groups, history, geography, politics, demographics, culture and much more.


World Atlas National Geographic ($1.99)





A great app that provides exceptional detail when zooming in. To the point where I was able to zoom in from a picture of the 3D globe to a  the city streets of Adelaides CBD including street names (internet connection and speed is important when doing this). The app allows for a quick search of all nations and territories and provides basic information about them.


Google Earth (free)






Not as powerful as the PC version but none the less an excellent resource on the iPad.


Stack Countries ($1.99)






A game to help students learn about countries. The game can be made to be quite hard or easier. The player has the option to deselect capitals, continents, languages, border countries, cities, landmarks, flags and country shapes which impacts on the types of questions the game asks. Students can also focus on the whole world or a particular continent.


iLearn Continents and Oceans (free)






This app has 3 sections: Learn, Game and Test. A fairly simple app that develops student knowledge about the continents and oceans.


205 National Anthems, Maps, Flags, Facts ($1.99)






Educational interactive global map marked with each countries flag. Quizzes about anthems and flags as well as the world factbook offering lots of information about each country.


Cracking World (free)






View data on earthquake activity for up to the last 30 days. What is an earthquake? Plus 6 useful videos on earthquakes.


World War 2 Interactive ($5.49)






A comprehensive resource on WW2. The app includes video, images and speeches from WW2 as well as comprehensive written information. You can get a free version to see what you think of it before upgrading to the full version.


Timeline Eons ($9.99)






An expensive app that serves only a single purpose but does it quite well. A timeline of the entire worlds history. You even have the option to add in events to the timeline which is a quality function. Students could add in their birth dates, important local, state and national dates that are not included on the original timeline. This allows students to see what major world events coincided with the events they have entered. Each image on the timeline is also linked to the Internet so that further information can be obtained. You can get a free version to trial before committing to the paid version.


Pyramids 3D ($14.99)






Explore the pyramids and tombs of ancient Egypt. Enter and wander the tombs and passage ways. Examine wall paintings and interact with a variety of objects. There is also an accompanying interactive book.


Virtual History – Roma ($9.49)






3D exploration of ancient Rome. Visit the Colosseum, the Circus Maximus, Hadrians Mausoleum and many other places of significant importance in ancient Rome. This app has many innovative and interactive functions and all you could wish to know about this ancient civilisation.




Educational Apps Part 9 – Practical ideas for applying apps

Here are some great practical applications of iPad apps by mrandrewsonline. Each link takes you to a post on how he has used the iPad to enhance learning. There are a few ideas here so the idea was not to look at everything all at once. The use of apps in these posts ranges from the more simple ‘one off lessons’ to high level use across major units of work. When you read some of these you might say, “that’s awesome but I can’t do that, I don’t know enough about the ipad.” The point of this post is not for you to be able to go off immediately and instantly apply all these ideas. Its purpose is to show you the potential of the iPad and who knows, in 6-12 months maybe you too may be creating like Mr. Andrews (his peers) and his students using the iPad.

The great thing about the first two examples is that they can be applied across (dare I say) all subjects!

Design and Technology Project (Controllable Vehicle Project)

Apps used: Book Creator (teachers creating and instructional ebook & students creating marketing material), iMovie (as a presentation tool), Numbers (spreadsheet tool) and Garageband (creating jingles)

Case Study Part 1: How can the iPad change the pedagogy of a Design & Technology project?

Case Study Part 2: How the use of the iPad changed the pedagogy of a Design & Technology project.

Case Study Part 3: Using iPads as a creative and innovative approach to learning


Using Cartoon Style Apps

Examples of cartoon strip style apps: Strip Designer, ComicBook and Comic Life

Strip Designer: 10 easy ways to get started with iPads/iPods in the primary classroom (all examples relevant for secondary students)


Raising Writing Standards

Part 1: Raising Standards in Boys’ Writing using the iPad for Gaming – By Mr Williams

Part 2: Raising Standards in Boys’ Writing using the iPad for Gaming: Outcomes and Ways Forward By Mr Williams


Using Apps in Maths

10 Practical Ways To Use Apps in Primary Mathematics Teaching – By Mr Williams




Educational Apps Part 7 – Numeracy

Below is a great range of apps to support student learning in numeracy. Click on the icons to view the apps in the app store for more details and reviews.

Calculator HD (free)






Basic and scientific calculator.


Khan Academy (free)






Access the thousands of Khan Academy videos on the iPad. Videos cover all year levels.


PopMath ($0.99)






This app is structured in levels and allows the user to select +, -, x, /, or all four at once. Students need to tap the coresponding bubbles, i.e. 5+5 bubble and the 10 bubble.


Dinosaur Kids Math (free)




This app uses digits and groupings of dinosaurs to get students develop knowledge of addition and subtraction.


iKnow1- 100 ($0.99)






This apps assists students with counting to 100.


Mathmateer formerly (free) Rocket Math full version ($0.99)






This is a great math game. Students earn money by attempting math problems. This money can then be spent on building a rocket. Once the rocket is launched it enters space where students try to solve as many math problems as possible before the rocket falls back to earth.


Maths Martians HD ($1.99)






Select a times table set and see how fast you can tap through the answers.


Times Table (Times Table Lab)






Students see how quickly they can answer times tables in a grid format starting with a 5×5 grid.


Flash Tables ($0.99)






Use flash cards, tables listed with answers, grid style practice and a testing function.


Factor Samuri






A fun game teaching students their times tables. The aim of the game is to cut numbers into their primes but to not cut the primes.


Maths Bingo ($0.99)






Bingo style maths game with three levels and allows up to 10 players to play.


Geoboard (free)






Create geometric shapes on a geoboard using rubber bands. A great tool for developing knowledge of geometric shapes.


Convert Any Unit (free) (paid version $2.99)






An app to convert units of measurement.


Motion Math ($1.99)






A fun way to learn fractions. Students have to  tilt the iPad to make the fraction land in the correct place on a line, i.e. 1/2 must land half way along the line.


Teaching Number Lines (free)






Counting forward, backwards, skip counting and sequencing.


Fraction Basics (free)






A series of videos explaining the concepts involved in fractions. From understanding basic concepts to improper, mixed, equivalent, adding, subtracting, dividing and multiplying fractions. Videos also cover converting fractions to decimals and percentages.


MathBoard Addition (free) MathBoard ($5.49 – covers +, -, x, /) The link on this image goes to the free addition version.






This app asks students to solve addition, subtraction, division and multiplication math problems.  If students get stuck the app has a problem solver section that shows the steps involved in solving the problem students are having trouble with.


Quick Graph (free) Quick Graph + ($1.99)






Graphics calulator.


Math Terms





Hundreds of maths terms explained. An excellent reference app.


Video Calculus (free)






A great range of well presented videos with Professor Burger who presents the concepts while they are explained on a white board format.


Algerbra Champ (free)






This app is set in the style of a street fighting game (there is no actual fighting). This app does not explain how algerbra works it only allows players to practice equations.