Tech Tip #167–How to Evaluate Apps

tech tipsIn these 169 tech-centric situations, you get an overview of pedagogy—the tech topics most important to your teaching—as well as practical strategies to address most classroom tech situations, how to scaffold these to learning, and where they provide the subtext to daily tech-infused education.

Today’s tip: How to Evaluate Apps

Category: Pedagogy

Here are thirteen tips to evaluate the apps you’ll find useful in your classroom:

  1. free or small fee
  2. stand the test of time
  3. positive parent reports
  4. rated ‘for everyone’ or ‘low maturity’
  5. no in-app purchases or billing
  6. support the ‘4 C’s’–creativity, critical thinking, communication, collaboration
  7. offer compelling content (this is subjective: ‘Compelling’ varies teacher-to-teacher and student-to-student)
  8. are not distracting or overwhelming in colors, music, or activity
  9. offer levels that become increasingly more difficult, providing differentiation for student needs
  10. few ads–and those that are there do not take up a significant portion of the screen
  11. intuitive to use with a shallow learning curve that encourages independence
  12. easily applied to a variety of educational environments
  13. doesn’t collect personal information other than user credentials or data required to operate the app

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What’s your favorite tech tip in your classroom? Share it in the comments below.

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Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the editor/author of over a hundred tech ed resources including a K-12 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum. She is an adjunct professor in tech ed, Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, and author of the tech thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and Twenty-four Days. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

Author: Jacqui
Welcome to my virtual classroom. I've been a tech teacher for 15 years, but modern technology offers more to get my ideas across to students than at any time in my career. Drop in to my class wikis, classroom blog, our internet start pages. I'll answer your questions about how to teach tech, what to teach when, where the best virtual sites are. Need more--let's chat about issues of importance in tech ed. Want to see what I'm doing today? Click the gravatar and select the grade.

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