The best app to use in the classroom? The camera

DSC_0181When other teachers find out I’m Apple Distinguished Educator, I’m often asked if I’ve got a killer reading, spelling, writing, maths app recommendations.

There’s almost a sense of a let down when I say the app that my students and I use most in my classroom is the camera.

Yet when in the course of the day that’s the one we go to first.

Kids will be using video to ‘show what they know’

  • talking through a maths strategy
  • recording themselves read to check for fluency
  • creating stop motions of spelling words
  • videos in response to book.

The photography function enables the children to capture what they see, progress, observations  as well as adding photos to the class flickr account which they often share with their parents back home The photos can be used and remixed for other purposes.

As a teacher I’m forever using my camera snapping pictures of the kids. As I teach in an international school, parents are arriving from very different context. At the moment I have a child new to the class who has come from a phonics-dominated reading programme. I could have written a long email and talked through what was happening but things were best when I grabbed my camera during a reading lesson and filmed part of the lesson.

From there the parents could see how the children were interacting with the text in the class and what we were trying to achieve. Showing what was happening was so much valuable than any explanation I could have given.

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3 thoughts on “The best app to use in the classroom? The camera

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  1. We also use the camera a lot in the school where I work, but sometimes there are parents who don’t give permission to film their children. Therefore, I cannot always do everything I’d like to!

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    1. To be honest, I wouldn’t work in a school where stuff like that was locked down. There’s a huge difference between filming and broadcasting. Perhaps time for a rethink?

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