December 7, 2016

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On the Map | Touch and Go

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Injecting game play or interactive quizzes into lessons can help them go down a bit more smoothly. Here are two apps that offer students of geography both “learn” and “play” opportunities.

A Sobering Centennial: The Somme Offensive | Touch and Go

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The Battle of the Somme, the devastating, five-month offensive of World War 1, is commemorated in an app marking its centennial.

Robots, Early Learning on the Rise: What’s Trending in Kids’ Books

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While ebooks have stalled, the outlook for the children’s book market looks good. That data and coming trends were unpacked at the Nielsen Children’s Book Summit.

Amazon “Rapids” App Offers Kids Short Stories

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Amazon’s new app for kids ages 7–12 brings them original short stores that unfold in snippets of chat style text on e-readers and cell phones.

To Panama with a Tiger and a Bear | Touch and Go

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Two creatures discover that the land of their dreams is not so far away after all.

STEAM, with an Emphasis on “A” | SLJ ISTE Webcast Series

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This fall series, sponsored by littleBits, explores the education technology topics educators are talking about this school year, from virtual reality and STEAM to popular culture and digital literacy.

Portable and Practical: A Guide for Budding Birders | Touch and Go

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A field guide to birds for the youngest children that’s chock-full of information and activities.

Swift Playgrounds: Not Just Another Coding App |SLJ Review

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Are your students budding coders? Apple has just released a sophisticated app for students serious about programming. Our review of Swift Playgrounds.

The Surprising Impact of Brain Games on Learning

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Playing computer games designed to improve cognitive functions can increase students’ test performance more than traditional methods, such as one-on-one tutoring, according to a Yale study.

New York Libraries To Offer Wi-Fi Hotspots to Needy Students

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New York City Schools partners with the city’s three library systems, Google, and Sprint to bring free, year-long Wi-Fi service to households without it.

From Pop-Up to App, “With a Few Bricks” | Touch and Go

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Pat the Bunny was one of the first interactive books to make the leap to the iPad; others have followed. Here’s one from Vincent Godeau.

 A NC Library Brings Wi-Fi Hotspots to Students in Need

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Partnering with Sprint, the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is allowing students who don’t have Wi-Fi at home to check out portable hotspots.

Boum! | Touch and Go

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SLJ‘s reviewer describes this app as “…a seamless narrative experience…rich with interpretive possibility.”

All About Escape Rooms

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Can you find the missing scientist? Travel back in time to ancient Egypt? Escape room games use problem-solving skills to boost curriculum—and they’re fun. Play one here.

Paul Klee, for Kids | Touch and Go

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A beautifully designed app that introduces children to the dreamlike works of the 20th-century master.

The Latest in STEM: Teens Team Up With the FDA

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Learning to code, visiting the White House, and pitching medical apps “Shark Tank” style? Students in the aimHI Summer Incubator Program, a partnership between the FDA and Montgomery County (MD) County Library, did it all.

Hey, I Built a LEGO Wall! Here’s How.

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An elementary school librarian quickly assembled an inexpensive LEGO wall with donated LEGO bricks, crowdsourced advice, and good humor.

A Censorship Simulator and Lesson | “Westport Independent”

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For educators looking for a multimedia approach to teaching about censorship as Banned Books Week nears, Westport Independent may be just the platform.

String Theory: Projects Merging Math, Art, and Making

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Recipes for large and small-scale geometric string art projects from Todd Burleson, SLJ’s 2016 School Librarian of the Year.

This article was published in School Library Journal's September 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

 Streamline Student Research With Wolfram|Alpha Add-Ons

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The recent release of two add-ons for Google Drive brings the power of the Wolfram|Alpha computational search engine directly into Google Docs and Google Sheets.