A Feast of Friends: 7 Apps We Love to Use With Popplet

No app is an island, especially in the classroom. Combining apps — in activities like app smashing, or in the natural course of classwork — can increase skills development and better aid subject understanding. Every great app is great because it does one or two things really well, but what makes an app really great is its capacity to integrate (inter-great?!) with other apps. Just like students, we love apps that work and play well with others!

Easygoing, open to sharing and with an engaging interface: Popplet has got what it takes to get the job done, so it’s no surprise that when it comes to interaction, Popplet’s social calendar is full.  We took a look at the apps that people love to use with Popplet and then we listed them in no particular order just in case…well, you know what it’s like when you have so many friends!

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Everyone’s A Writer Now: Popplet in the Writing Class

Writing is more popular than ever! Sure, the infamous selfie and the spontaneous snap of a restaurant meal might be getting all the notice, but sharing our prose and poetry is more commonplace than ever before. The Facebook comment, the 140-character tweet, the Tumblr or WordPress blog, and many other platforms offer almost everyone who can write a potential audience numbering in the billions. Never before has so much been written by so many for so many.

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In technology-assisted classrooms — and in the wider connected world — opportunities to write, to communicate, to develop, and to grow are now widespread. We took a look at how Popplet is being to put to good use by teachers of writing and how young scribes are shaping up in the digital world. Continue reading

Building Blocks in Autism Education: Minecraft and Popplet

In our article published last month Mind Mapping to Minds Meeting: Popplet in Autism Education, we talked about how new technologies were fast becoming powerful and invaluable tools in autism education. Young learners on the autism spectrum experience fewer difficulties when presented with new technology and have different needs to conventional learners. So certain technologies such as the iPad and apps like Popplet play to the strengths of autistic learners.

These technologies are not without their drawbacks: mainly the repetitive and inappropriate use of games and some social media apps. But that’s a problem not only found in the classroom! This is why people with autism, parents of individuals on the autism spectrum and educators involved in autism education use reliable “evidence-informed” information when choosing which technologies to use.

One organization that provides information for parents and educators is Autism Spectrum Australia (“Aspect”) – “Australia’s leading service provider for autism and other disabilities”. Two of their community leaders recently published a detailed guide demonstrating how the game “Minecraft is being used to address the special interests of those in the autism classroom”.

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5 Ways To Use The New Public Popplets Feature

Popplet users (Poppleteers?) have been quick to start using our new public popplets feature. As we detailed in our tutorial previously, this feature lets you share your Popplet creations with the world.

Now you can control three levels of access to your popplets:

  • Private – this level of access is for your eyes only. All popplets start as private creations
  • Shared with collaborators – you can make a popplet public, which means anyone with the URL can see the popplet, and you can give permission to your friends and colleagues to edit or add to the popplet as collaborators
  • Public – this will add your Popplet to our public popplets board and let anyone see your Popplet (they cannot edit it however). Your public popplets can be ranked by popularity so you can see how often others are checking out your creations!

So now that you can add your Popplets to a public library, how can you make use of this? Here are 5 initial ways you can use the new Public Popplets feature: Continue reading

It’s Elementary: Popplet Amongst The Primary School Apps

This month in our Popplet People profile, we speak about Popplet’s use as one of the best primary school apps (aka elementary school apps) with Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Education Expert, Ian Addison.

Primary School Apps Expert Ian Addison

Follow Primary School Apps Expert Ian Addison on Twitter @ianaddison

Ian’s ICT experience includes:

  • ICT Coordinator at St John the Baptist Primary School in Hampshire, England for two years
  • Involvement in developing ICT curriculum for the past 4 years, and
  • Recognition as a Google Apps for Education Certified Teacher.

In May this year, he was nominated by the UK Education Blog Awards for Teacher Blog of the Year, and in July, his book Essentials: ICT was published.

Ian was one of our many education users who contributed to answered our survey, focusing on his primary school apps experiences using Popplet. He was excited to see us introduce a group subscription offer for schools and classrooms, as his grade 5 and 6 students love using our app in classroom activities and as a study aid.

We interviewed Ian about how he uses Popplet as one of his primary school apps teaching tools, and the ICT needs of elementary school-level teachers around the world.

Q: You have created websites including ICT Planning and Under Ten Minutes. What skills are teachers looking for in using apps in the classroom?

I think it is quick and easy ways to get started. Nothing fancy, just basic tools that they can learn in 5 minutes and then give to a class of children to explore and experiment with.

Q: Can you tell us a little about what your book, Essentials ICT, is about and who it is for?
The book is about ways of embedding ICT and computers into classrooms and the chapter Popplet featured in was around the use of presentations. often children are asked to make a presentation but it always tends to be PowerPoint. I love PowerPoint, but I also love Prezi and Popplet too. So it was a guide to using it with some examples.

Q: We recently featured one of your students’ Popplet projects on our Facebook page. Can you describe the classroom activity for us?

Subject: Science
Learning goals: To research information about space and present it to the class.
Class size: 32
Class ages/grades: 9-11 year olds (year 5/6 )
Classroom activity description: As part of their space projects, they could look at any tool they wished and present to the class. Some used Google Sites, some used Popplet and some used paper. All were welcome 🙂

Thanks to Ian for sharing some insights on using Popplet as one of his primary school apps. As an educator, you can use our Facebook page to share your lesson plans and ideas with colleagues, or tweet your elementary school apps experiences using the hashtag #poppleted