Category Archives: Fine Arts

Brushes 3

Screen Shot 2013-08-26 at 9.51.35 PMYour budding young artist will enjoy this painting app.

After selecting a blank white canvas, students can…

  • Choose any color on the color wheel
  • Change the thickness of the brush (between 1 – 100 pixels)
  • Give the brush strokes a texture
  • Use the eraser tool
  • Undo and redo on an unlimited basis

The app also records the entire painting process – stroke by stroke.  The completed painting can be added to the native Photos app, copied, mailed, or sent to Flickr.

For a free app, the smoothness and accuracy of the brush strokes is impressive!  The free version does not support layers, but they can be added via an in-app purchase.

Posted in 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, 9th - 12th, Fine Arts, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Paid | Tagged , | Comments Off on Brushes 3

Line Art

Screen Shot 2013-08-21 at 2.00.08 PMThis simple art app responds to a student’s touch on the device.  Depending on what they do (tap, swipe, lay down a palm, etc.), the app responds in various ways and leaves behind colorful lines.  The app seems like it’s alive as millions of tiny particles move and respond.  The particles (and subsequent designs) change color on their own.  The ‘Sticky Fingers’ option causes the design effect to linger, rather than disappear as soon as the device is no longer touched.

The app comes with the option to take a picture of created designs; the pictures are automatically saved on the device.

Posted in 1st - 2nd, 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, 9th - 12th, Fine Arts, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Paid, PreK - Kindergarten | Tagged | Comments Off on Line Art

Real Piano HD Pro

Screen Shot 2013-08-14 at 9.11.47 PMOf course even an app called Real Piano can not take the place of a real piano.  But, this app is about as close as one is going to get.  I do not play piano myself, therefore it is a little difficult to evaluate the accuracy of the notes.  But this app is quite robust and would make a fine addition to a music-friendly classroom environment.

Students have access to the entire 88-key piano.  But they will have to choose between one of three keyboards – single, dual, or separate.  Obviously, not all 88 keys can be shown at once.

They also have access to several other customization options.  They can change the style for the labels on the keys (or actually hide the labels altogether).  The seventh note can also be changed to be spelled ‘si’ or ‘ti’. They can also change the notation types of the key labels.  The piano can easily be tuned as well within the settings and customization options.

In addition to the piano, students can also access sounds from a guitar, bass guitar, harp, music box, and marimba.

Perhaps the most impressive feature is the ability to record the music played in this app. Recordings can be played back immediately or sent via email or to iTunes.  Three recorded songs come prerecorded into the app – Romance d’Amour, Happy Birthday, and Back: Prelude in C Major.

Posted in 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, 9th - 12th, Fine Arts, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Paid | Tagged | Comments Off on Real Piano HD Pro

Easy Origami

Screen Shot 2013-07-28 at 10.12.54 AMStarting with a square piece of paper, even novice origami artists will be able to follow the clear step-by-step directions to make the array of animals and objects below.  This app is simple and adequately named – it provides an easy way to make origami!

Objects to Make

  • Lion’s face
  • Polar bear
  • Tiger’s face
  • Monkey
  • Turtle
  • Monkey’s face
  • Rabbit’s face
  • Mouse’s face
  • Rocket
  • Owl
  • Sea otter
  • Frog
  • Panda’s face
  • Patrol car
  • Shop
  • House on a corner
  • Pencil
  • Snake
  • Koala’s face
  • Penguin
  • Tadpole
Posted in 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, Fine Arts, iPad, Math, Paid | Tagged , | Comments Off on Easy Origami

Pic Collage

Screen Shot 2013-07-09 at 9.31.53 PMStudents have the opportunity to creatively arrange photographs into collages in this app.  They can use the device’s camera to take pictures on the spot or they can import pictures that are already on the device.  They can also import pictures from the internet (by performing a simple search) and add text and/or stickers to each collage.  They can also add frames and/or backgrounds to each collage.

Once photos are added to the collage, a simple tap brings up options to edit the photo, edit the border, clip the photo, set the photo as the background, or copy the photo.  The photo editor allows users to enhance, add effects to, focus, and draw on the photo.

I’m impressed with the number of ‘free’ backgrounds, fonts, and stickers that come with this app.  However, make a note that additional sets of stickers can be obtained via in-app purchases.

Completed collages can be shared via social networking sites, saved to the device’s library, or emailed.  It also comes with the neat option to send a postcard of the collage (for a fee, of course).

Creative possibilities are endless with this app; it will quickly become a favorite for many students!


Posted in 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, 9th - 12th, Fine Arts, Free, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone | Tagged , | Comments Off on Pic Collage

Draw and Tell

Screen Shot 2013-06-09 at 9.12.33 PMThis app should be called ‘Draw, Color, and Tell’ – then its title would completely explain what students can do with it.  Upon opening the app, select from ‘Blank Paper’ or ‘Coloring’.  Although, you can also access your saved drawings/recordings from the main home screen.

Blank Paper – Choose from almost 3 dozen background pages for your drawing.  Two ‘sheets’ of writing paper (primary and notebook-style) are included, as is graph paper.  You can even select an image found on your device’s Camera Roll as the background!

Coloring – Almost two dozen simple, yet cute coloring pages are available for students to select.  Think of this section as a modern day coloring book!

Despite the chosen option, the tools remain the same.  Students can choose to color or draw with a crayon, colored pencil, or paintbrush of over 30 colors.  There are also two different sized erasers.  Students also have access to a plethora of stickers and even more patterns (that can be applied to as much or as little of the page as they’d like).  Stencils are available in the Blank Paper option only.

‘Tell’ is included in the title because students have the option of attaching an audio recording to their drawing.  They are also able to manually move any stickers placed in order to ‘animate’ their recording.

Completed drawings can be saved to Photos and shared from there.

I do wish the option of including typed text was available.  Regardless, I still recommend this art app for use with younger students.

Posted in 1st - 2nd, Fine Arts, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Paid, PreK - Kindergarten | Tagged , | Comments Off on Draw and Tell

123 Color: Talking Coloring Book

Screen Shot 2013-05-22 at 10.16.28 AMThink of this app as an educational electronic coloring book.  The basic version comes with four activities: Numbers Learning, Colors Learning, Upper Case Letters Learning, and Lower Case Letters Learning.  As many as 14 additional coloring books and learning guides are available as in-app purchases.

For each activity, the user has 6 choices of coloring books to access: Christmas Cartoons, Shapes, Cartoons Book 1, Cartoons Book 2, World Map, and Photo Painting.

The app supports the following languages: American English (man), American English (woman), Australian English, British English, French, German, and Spanish.  The Settings menu also allows you to customize the Coloring Options, Artwork, Sound, and Maps.

Students will definitely enjoy using their finger (or a stylus) to ‘color’ pictures while also learning the names of shapes, colors, numbers, letters, and the locations of continents and oceans.  Completed pictures can easily be shared via email, printed, or saved to the Photos app.

Posted in 1st - 2nd, Fine Arts, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Paid, PreK - Kindergarten | Comments Off on 123 Color: Talking Coloring Book


Screen Shot 2013-04-04 at 11.48.59 AMPerhaps this app has more educational uses than I’ve discovered so far.  But for now, I see it being more for entertainment purposes than for anything else.

The concept is pretty simple.  Take a picture in the app.  The use the eraser tool to literally erase part of the picture.  Then take another picture to occupy the space you just erased.  That process can continue until you’ve created your very own ‘photo mash’.

It also comes with a series of 40+ ‘Challenges’ of photo mashes to make.

Here are the directions for a Challenge called ‘Touchy Feely’:

  1. Take a picture of your hand reaching out with the finger stretched out, or use the provided template.
  2. Erase everything but the hand.
  3. Walk around and take a picture of something you shouldn’t touch.

Try the free version before making a commitment to the paid version.

Posted in 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, 9th - 12th, Fine Arts, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Paid | Comments Off on Photomash

Khan Academy

Screen Shot 2013-04-03 at 2.00.58 PMThis is the app version of the website  It features over 4,000 video tutorials that cover a myriad of mathematics, science, humanities and test prep skills.  While the videos found in the app wouldn’t completely replace more traditional math instruction, they do serve as yet another resource students can use to help comprehend and reinforce many skills.

The iPhone and iPod Touch version only allows users to view videos.  However, the iPad version allows users to download videos for viewing offline, use sub-titles to navigate, and login in to track watched videos.

Video Categories


  • Arithmetic and pre-algebra
  • Algebra
  • Geometry
  • Trigonometry and precalculus
  • Calculus
  • Probability and statistics
  • Differential equations
  • Linear algebra
  • Applied math
  • Recreational mathematics

Science and Economics

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Cosmology and astronomy
  • Organic chemistry
  • Finance and capital markets
  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Computer science
  • Healthcare and medicine
  • LeBron asks
  • Projects
  • Projects
  • MIT+K12
  • Entrepreneurship


  • Art History
  • History
  • American Civics

Test Prep

  • SAT Math
  • GMAT
  • California Standards Test
  • Competition Math

Talks and Interviews

  • Key media pieces
  • Our vision
  • School pilots
  • Thoughts on education
  • “The One World School House”
  • Other features

Coach Resources

  • Khan Academy in the classroom
  • For teachers
  • For educators in other learning environments
  • Classroom case studies
Posted in 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, 9th - 12th, Fine Arts, Free, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Math, Science | Comments Off on Khan Academy


Screen Shot 2013-03-27 at 8.12.34 AMOther options may exist, but I think the process of editing video footage into a ‘movie’ is quite simple using this app.  This is especially true if you’re already familiar with the computer software version of iMovie.  Make a note that more editing features and tools are made available when the device is in landscape (rather than portrait) mode.

When you begin a new project, you’ll have to decide if you want to create a new ‘movie’ or a new trailer.  Think of a trailer as a preview to an upcoming movie you may see at a theatre.  You can choose between the following trailer genres: Adrenaline, Bollywood, Coming of Age, Expedition, Fairy Tale, Narrative, Retro, Romance, Scary, Superhero, Swashbuckler and Teen.

iMovie will prove to be quite intuitive for most users.  In true Apple style, many onscreen tips and prompts can be accessed with a simple tap of the question mark towards the top of the screen.  It’s easy to import video clips, pictures, and audio files that are already on your mobile device.  But you can also record audio or additional take pictures and videos from directly in the app.  In addition to songs and other audio files you may already have, the app comes with an assortment of theme music and sound effects.  The processes of trimming, splitting, and deleting clips are also quite simple.

An array of options exist to complement your ‘movie’.  For example, you can select from one of eight themes: Modern, Bright, Playful, Neon, Travel, Simple, News, or CNN iReport.  Theme music can also be turned on or off.  Continue to customize your ‘movie’ by adding transitions and adjusting the audio.

A built-in ‘Help’ section extensively covers the following topics: Create a project; Create a trailer; Share projects, trailers, and media; and Use AirPlay to stream videos to your HDTV.

Once you’re satisfied with your new ‘movie’, you can share it to the camera roll, YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, or CNN iReport.  You can also send it to iTunes.

Posted in 3rd - 5th, 6th - 8th, 9th - 12th, Fine Arts, Foreign Language, iPad, iPod Touch & iPhone, Language Arts, Math, Paid, Science, Social Studies | Comments Off on iMovie