iPads in Education

Innovating education with technology.

Video on 3 Free apps to make Thinking visual

With touch screen technology, iPad allows you to make your thinking visual. Apps like ScreenChomp, ShowMe and Educreations allow you to record your voice and your annotations on the screen at the same time. All three apps are free and have great potential for use in your classroom. You can record over an image and make engaging lessons to share with students, or have students create tutorials to teach their peers.  Here’s a comparison of the features of each: 


What you can add




3 pen icons with different color and size options, eraser, import image from library, dropbox or take photo to act as background

Can download finished video

No login required to email video

Only one page, must clear text to get next page 

No typing text tool 

Can’t see online, must have link 

Show Me

Pen tool with 7 color options, choose photo from library, take photo, add image from web, eraser tool 

Can download from ShowMe website

Can follow people (could be useful for student/teacher accounts)

Only one page, must clear text to get to next page


No typing text tool  


Pen tool with 10 color options, choose photo from library, take photo, add image from web, undo tool, text box tool, add as many pages as you’d like 

Can add text to page 

Can make screencasts from their website as well as from iPad

Can move images around on page during recording 

No eraser 

Can’t download 

How can you use this in your classroom? 8 ideas with Making Thinking Visual for iPads: 

 1. Record a Flip Classroom lesson. Have students follow you with their account. 

2. Students can draw and speak to explain how they solved a math problem as they go through each step for homework. Email it to the teacher.  

3. Students can annotate over a map to show how far students travelled on a field trip. Share on your IWB or through Apple TV.  

4. Students annotate and speak over an image (ie: bar graph or diagram) for an exit ticket - 3 things you learned, 2 questions you still have and email to teacher. 

5. Collaborate over a rubric - each student uses a different color annotation and share with teacher at a conference. 

6. Have students add annotations to revise a paragraph. Share with other students through email or by swapping iPads. 

7. Create a digital journal with screen shots from iPad - “What I did this week on my iPad” Save on iPad or email to teacher to be added to digital portfolio. 

8. Have students record themselves explaining their notes. Download on website and upload to LMS or school website for students who are absent.

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Comment by Caryn Trautz on January 19, 2013 at 7:42pm
As much as I like Educreations the best out of the 3 apps, one big drawback that my students have found is that once they have their slides all created, if they make a mistake during the recording, there is no way to redo it. They must start from scratch. Very frustrating after putting in all that time and effort!
Comment by Nate Gordon on December 5, 2012 at 6:22am

Sadly, there is no perfect app here... each has features missing. My ideal would have

  1. eraser
  2. undo
  3. multiple pages
  4. scrolling down

Some others to look at:

Ask3: the people at TechSmith told me that they envision this as a replacement for Screenchomp. The interface is very nice, it has tool drawing (rectangles and circles) but there's no eraser and no undo. Frankly, seems like a step back.

Teach (Knowmia): can se multiple slides at once. Excellent tool kit, varieties of shapes, colors, etc. Can switch to face recording, can work on slides seperately, and there is a feature that lets you show where you're clicking (a small red dot appears). Drawbacks: the smaller icons for the toolkit and more choices make it harder for kids or those who prefer the simplicity of the other apps and there is no eraser. 


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