Educational Apps for mobile devices such as smart phones (e.g., iPhone, Andriod, BlackBerry) and digital tablets (e.g., iPads, Slate, Galaxy Tab, Xoom) represent an extraordinary and largely untapped array of tools for educators and their students to build the skills, knowledge, and expertise needed for work and life in the 21st century.
Currently, the vast majority of players in the development of educational Apps are profit driven. The Apps Go To School program will provide the opportunity for middle school and upper elementary STEM educators and their students to develop, design, use, and distribute their own unique Apps.
With more than 20 million Apple iPads and in excess of 100 million iPhone and iPod Touch devices in use, exponentially rising numbers of universities, K-12 schools, and institutions are selecting the iPad and iPod Touch as the platforms of choice for both face-to-face and distance education classrooms. However, a disparity exists between the individuals responsible for creating the Apps (i.e. development companies with little to no instructional experience, masked behind the business-minded protection of the iTunes App store) and the ultimate consumers in the classroom (educators and students).
The classroom teacher can no longer be viewed as simply the end user or content expert; they must serve an important role in Apps design to create transformative change. Apps Goes To School leverages mobile Apps design and use by middle school and upper elementary STEM educators and students to strategically build upon our existing UNM program to achieve the following specific goals: Sponsored by Nokia, The Mobile Apps in the Classroom program builds on our nationally recognized Mobile Design, Research, and Integration program for educators at UMN.