Word Clouds by ABCYa.com is free app that allows users to create graphic representations of word frequency. It is very similar to the popular website Wordle. Users type in words or copy and paste lists, speeches, etc into a window. Word Clouds then translates these words into a ‘cloud’, making high frequency words appear larger the more times they occur. Users can change font, color, layout and word count. Recent updates also allow users to input numerals and edit word clouds without having to start over. Once a word cloud is complete, it can be saved to the camera roll as a photo. Word Clouds is beautifully laid out, easy to use, and widely applicable for educational use.
Number Pieces Basic is a free app that helps students develop mathematics skills like place value and computation through an open ended platform of base ten number blocks that come in groups of 1, 10 and 100. Students can group, break apart, regroup, choose one of three colours, and rotate the pieces as well as annotate using the in-app pencil and eraser tools. Number Pieces Basic is ideal for counting, grouping, demonstrating the concepts of place value, addition and subtraction. A more advanced version, the paid app Number Pieces, has additional tools for representation, multiplication, and division.
Number Pieces Basic is suitable for Lower Primary, Upper Primary and occasional uses in Secondary.
Sorting Machine is a free sorting, sequencing app that asks users to sort a series of six similar objects according to different variables, i.e. “shortest to tallest”, “lowest to highest”, as well as basic alphanumeric sequencing (a,b,c,d,e/1,2,3,4,5). The app is arranged by levels which users can unlock by successfully sequencing or sorting many series of objects. It takes a little while to unlock each level and this “game” element has been generally minimized while using the app in a classroom setting, emphasizing instead correctly sequencing or sorting each group of objects. It is also worth noting that there is no voice over instruction in this app so it is best suited to children who can distinguish differences between six similar objects and understand the illustrated instructions at the top of each challenge screen.