Apps for creativity in learning

SketchBook Pro app image

SketchBook Pro app image

This week I attended a session on using iPads for education at London Metropolitan University. The session description stated that

Derrick Welsh is playing with iPads for teaching and learning purposes.  He has offered to run a hands-on session to explore how we can create engaging and creative activities with the iPad – and how we can harness its potential for teaching, learning, assessment – and FUN!!

Derrick Welsh is described as an Artist-Technologist. He began experimenting with sending drawings as text messages in 2007 and moved into drawing on handheld touch devices for education. He has worked with schools and youth groups to encourage creativity.

We currently have some iPads in the Schools that are being lent to staff for a few different purposes. These include:
Teaching – e.g. app development in Online Journalism and Cultural Policy and Management; Experimentation – staff have borrowed iPads for a few weeks at a time to see how they could improve their organisation, note taking, presentations etc, marking pilots and administration – for example using dropbox for paperless meetings.

One of the ways we have found iPads most useful in the Schools of Arts and Social Sciences so far is for marking, for example iAnnotate is proving useful for marking student scripts that have been submitted via Moodle.

I was interested in attending this session as it looked at different uses to those we are exploring.
We spent the afternoon looking at a number of different apps – mostly free or with free versions. The group was quite diverse, with attendees from different universities and differing roles from library to teaching staff. Derrick introduced a number of different apps for different purposes. My favourites are below:

SketchBook Express/Pro

This is an excellent drawing application. We all doodled on the same iPad and then Derrick created a fantastic pattern by copying the image and mirroring it. I really enjoyed using this (although I have the pay for version – SketchBook Pro). I can see this being used for mind mapping and visualising. Sandra Seifield, the organiser of the session for London Met, said she felt it would be useful to ask students to draw representations of theories and concepts. I think this is a great idea.

Flip it! Lite and Animation HD Lite

These are free animation apps. You can quickly create and play an animation. I can see this as a way of revising or summarising work.

TypeDrawing
I personally like the effect of this although I’m not too sure of it’s its educational uses! P – perhaps for revision notes! You type a word or words and then can use them to draw. The app calls it ‘typography art’.

I was glad I attended this session, which highlighted some ways in which creativity can be embedded into learning to help students understand the subject they’re studying.

Image by Penguinpoker uisng TypeDrawing app

Image by Penguinpoker uisng TypeDrawing app

Flip It! animation

Flip It! animation