Yep, that's Ken from Streetfighter over there - how could I resist. :)
In the first part of this article, I introduced my method for classifying apps and using these classifications to help build simple '2 hit' combos. Now it's time to crank it up a notch.
Welcome to Level 2.
This time we're looking at chaining more than two apps together. This is naturally a little more complex and thus requires some careful planning in advance. It also helps if the students have previous experience using each app independently. I'll be using the same classification key as last time:
Absorption apps = A
Creation apps = C
Presentation apps = P
Where do we begin? The choice of starting point can be simplified by the fact that it's easiest to have just one presentation app. This will typically be your final destination so you just need to consider the route towards it. Logically then we can combo three apps with one from each of the categories. Here are some examples:
Anatomy 4D + Stage + Sonic Pics (A + C + P)
If you haven't yet seen Anatomy 4D in action, you're missing something special. Go read our article on Daqri's 4D learning expo to find out more. Screen grab an image of the augmented reality human and import to Stage for some labelling then into Sonic Pics to collate images and narrate. With some clever use of perspective you could even have a student stand 'next to' the augmented reality model for the screen grab and twin the labels.
Nat. Geog. World Atlas + Color Splash + Explain Everything (A + C + P)
National Geographic's atlas app is still one of the best looking apps of its type available making it ripe for a screen grab. As detailed in our second ebook, Color Splash can be used effectively with a map to highlight specific areas ( kind of like those scratch maps people have where they scratch off the places they've visited.) So for example you could colour in the places in Europe that the Vikings. Finish the project in Explain Everything to annotate the routes they took or use it for metacognition or reflection on the task itself.
Scribblenauts + Skitch + Moldiv (A + C + P)
In my recent article about the genius that is Scribblenauts, I mentioned that an educator could develop an entire problem solving session out of just the first level ( reaching the star at the top of the tree) by having students find as many ways to solve it as possible. Each method could be screen grabbed then taken into Skitch to annotate before creating a collage in Moldiv. The more methods they find, the more sections they split the Moldiv into! Did this recently with my Year 6 class and they found 30+ methods in fifteen minutes!
NB: The Moldiv icon has just changed (since pt1 of this article) - the new version can be seen to the right.
Morris Lessmore + RWT Timeline + Book Creator (A + C + P)
The Timeline app from ReadWriteThink is an incredibly versatile tool. Rather than use it for a history-based example, I thought I'd suggest something a little different. Moonbot Studios' The Fantastic Flying Books of Morris Lessmore still sets the standard for interactive stories. Why not let students read the story, taking screengrabs as they go and then use the timeline app to sequence the events and retell the tale. Alternatively, you could screengrab in advance, mix them up and share via Dropbox to make it even more challenging. the icing on the cake is then to import into Book Creator and mask audio recordings behind each point on the timeline to allow them to narrate their ideas, forming an interactive .epub poster. Who says Book Creator is just for making books?
The Pyramids + Skitch + Shadow Puppet (A + C + P)
Developed by Touch Press, The Pyramids is a remarkable app that allows users to take a virtual tour of the legendary structures at Giza. Have students snap pictures during their "visit" and then import them into Skitch to annotate them. This provides a great opportunity for some note-taking practice too. Complete the chain by importing the annotated images into Shadow Puppet to create a narrated slideshow of the tour.
World History Documents + Puppet Pals + Aurasma (A + C + P)
Use the vast library of historical documents to find a suitable source e.g. The Gettysburg Address by Lincoln. Snap an image then import to Puppet Pals and use the pic as the backdrop for the scene. Now select the Lincoln character and have him recite and/or explain the speech. This works well for younger students as the text is literally there as a prompt for them. As you work through this article, Aurasma will come up several times. This acclaimed augmented reality app is a natural fit for many types of combos. In this case. Print the image of the speech as the trigger and tag the completed Puppet Pals clip to it for an awesome AR display piece.
What you will have noticed is that the middle app in the combo is often used to modify or enhance the content from the first. Annotation apps will be common in this respect and in these previous examples apps like Skitch and Stage can easily be substituted with each other or similar apps.
Can I just clarify that I could theoretically make a huge 'combo' by selecting an app like Book Creator as my presentation app and simply importing work made in several separate apps like Puppet Pals, Morfo, Skitch etc. Whilst this is a valid approach, I am going to focus on making organic links between three or more apps so that they form one true combo. The aim is to create something unique that is impossible without that specific combo of apps.
It should also be noted that I don't count the use of Safari to find an image as part of a combo.
Of course the actual selection of app categories can vary; it doesn't need to be A + C + P. Here are some more examples:
Tellagami + Do Ink Green Screen + IMovie (C + C + P)
Credit must go to two of the major contributors to the site, Sabba Quidwai and Dr Rebecca Osborne for showing me this concept. When Sabba and Rebecca out together a special video guest appearance for one of our presentations at the recent Global Education Forum event, I was instantly struck by the way they had both their Tellagami avatars on screen simultaneously. The secret was using Do Ink's green screen app to layer them. so one Tellagami can be recorded against a plain green backdrop, then the other against the desired backdrop ( in a different position on screen of course) before using the green screen app to lay one on top of the other and chroma key out the green backing. iMovie then acts the presentation stage to sew multiple clips together.
Foldify + I Can Animate + iMovie (C + C + P)
This is an unorthodox combo as you could create a model in Foldify then print it off and animate it using an stop motion app like I Can Animate. The clips recorded can then be sewn together into a short film using iMovie. Some truly unique digital storytelling at work there! Altenatively you could use this in maths to explain the nets of 3D shapes and how they form.
PhotoFit Me + Explain Everything + iMovie (C + C + P)
Photofit Me is a lesser known but very cool app from The Open University that allows you to create police style photofits from composite parts. This can be great for allowing students to design villains (I've used it myself during work on Roald Dahl) but can be taken further through a creative combo. Export your image into Explain everything to crop and annotate if desired before recording a screencast talking about your nefarious creation and how to identofy them (great for developing description.) Export this into iMovie and use it as a part of a news report. It can be really effective if you incorporate the use of the picture in picture function to begin with (like a real news report would) though some careful timing is required! Note that in this example I have labelled Explain Everything as a creation app rather than a presentation app due to the way it is being used.
Comic Life + SloPro + Thinglink (P + C + P)
Comic Life is still one of the most visually appealing, easy to use app for students to display their work with. The only catch of course is that the final comic panel/poster us innately static and can't include video. This is where Thinglink comes in as it allows you to tag multimedia hotspots to an image. So in a science lesson, you could carry out a practical investigation, recording images of the various stages and using the slow-motion recording of SloPro to log your results. I've done this with a test of the effects of gravity on dropping objects of different weights but identical size. It really comes in handy as they land at the same time (if carried out fairly) but it can be hard to tell. SloPro makes it possible to see this happen at up to 1000x slow motion! When the Comic Life presentation is complete, export to camera roll and import to Thinglink to tag the video content.
Ornament + Type Drawing + Book Creator (C + C + P)
Create a stunning ornamental design in iOrnament then import into Type Drawing to add text round or within the actual image. Complete the combo by importing to Book Creator and using the invisible audio button trick to make the image interactive. A great example for those local to us in the Middle East looking for a combo to use that can be reated to Islamic Studies.
Pop Art Me + Chatterpix + Aurasma (C + C + P)
Another great little app from The Open University, Pop Art Me allows you to quickly apply a Cubist, Impressionist or Warhol-esque Pop Art effect to an image. The completed image can then be brought into Chatterpix, a mouth drawn on and narration added. Perhaps this explains the effect or tells more about the art movement itself? Here comes the clever bit - print the original image for a display and then tag the video to it using Aurasma. If you are careful, the effect can be quite stunning as the picture seems to come alive. I actually first used this trick two years ago with class photos for my year group that, when scanned in Aurasma, introduced themselves!
Epic Citadel + Master FX + Write About This (A + C + C)
One of the very first articles I wrote for the site detailed how I had used Epic Citadel and Morfo separately as a part of a creative saga writing project. This combo still starts with a virtual tour of the Epic Citadel, snapping pics along the way before using Master FX to insert the student themselves into the image. This new composition can then be imported and used as a writing prompt in the marvellous Write About This app.
Chemisrty101 + Explain Everything + Stick Around (A + C + C)
I'm going to approach this one backwards. The brilliant Stick Around app by Tony Vincent allows you to create your own interactive quizzes. As Tony explained in his recent interview with us, the app uses the same engine as Explain Everything. This is great for many reasons, not the least of which is the fact that it comes with a built in combo! You see, Stick Around allows the import of Explain Everything files as instructions for the puzzles. So here's the concept: Use the jaw-dropping AR app Chemistry101 to make some chemical compounds in augmented reality, snapping screenshots as you go. Import these into Explain Everything to trim, annotate and potentially provide details that will help solve the puzzle. Them import them (along with the .xpl file) into Stick Around to build the actual puzzle e.g. matching the elements needed to each compound.
'3 hit' combos can be formed quite easily as so many apps are "friendly" towards each other these days or allow export to camera roll. Screengrabbing can be used to get around those that are more closed off (usually the absorption apps).
We can even make the combo longer with some careful planning and creative thinking. Reverse engineering also helps - think about the destination app and what you want students to ultimately produce then see how you can form a path towards it. Don't force things. If apps don't mesh well, look for a different route. Of course another great tactic is to give ownership of the route to the students themselves as nine times out of ten they'll amaze you with some inventive navigation and app choices!
Ok so below you can find a couple of '4 hit' concepts to try:
Playart + 3D Gallery + Tellagami + iMovie (C + P + C + P)
Playart is an inspired piece of tech. If you're yet to sample it, I recommend it highly. It allows you to rework masterpieces by the like of Van Gogh and Cezanne or even design your own using elements of their works. 3D Gallery can then be used to display these works in a virtual art gallery. But why stop there? Screen grab images from the gallery and bring them into Tellagami to have your avatar discuss each piece and it's design. Once again, the final step can then be to use iMovie to sew the clips together. This could even become a collaborative project where the students share their Tellagami clips to the teacher who then compiles a class video, showing off the various works that appear to be in the same gallery.
Puppet Pals 2 + Vimeo + QR Reader + Comic Life (C + P + C + P)
In the '3 hit' section, I included a method for getting multimedia content into Comic Life, Here's an alternative approach - By using the Vimeo app to upload a video made in Puppet Pals 2, you can provide a target for a QR code. Vimeo allows videos to be securely locked behind passwords so the child protection need not be an issue. Add the QR code to the Comic Life presentation and your final piece becomes a multimedia showcase for a session.
Maps + Explain Everything + Morfo + Thinglink (A + C + C + P)
I'm going to use a superhero theme for this example as I just finished watching Avengers with my daughter! Use the native Maps app (or an alternative if you prefer) to snap a screen of a chosen location e.g. New York. Bring this into Explain Everything for annotating/adding a title etc. Now use Morfo's heroes pack to turn yourself into a superhero. Record some video testimonials as the hero that relate to various landmarks around the previously selected location. These could recount key acts of heroism around the city for example. Complete the combo by importing the map image into Thinglink and tagging the Morfo videos to it as superhero hotspots!
Now I was going to sign off here but I couldn't resist just one more.
Who's up for a '5 hit' combo?
Instalogo + Phoster + iMovie + Pic&Vid Stitch + Aurasma (C + C + C + P + P)
At the school I work at, we've just completed a term-long enterprise project. As a part of this, the students designed logos, adverts and all sorts of marketing materials. This combo uses Pic&Vid Stitch (think Moldiv but you can also add videos to the collage!) to bring some of these elements together into a slice of multimedia marketing material. First up use Instalogo to design the company logo. This app is easy to use and produces some very professional results (a lot of my students chose to use it.) Next create a promotional image in Phoster, complete with slogan. Thirdly have the students film a short TV-style advert for their product (real or imaginary) in iMovie. Next, sew the pieces together in Pic&Vid Stitch. The final montage can be exported as video file. Print off the company logo or promo poster and tag the video to the image in Aurasma to complete this monster combo!
Ok I think I'm going to leave it there! That's plenty for you all to go and play around!
Just remember - the iPad is an agile device that's incredibly versatile. The ways that you can combo apps are vast and limited only by your creativity. They also grant you easier access to the highest tier of the SAMR model as you are literally redefining the task by creating something impossible without each specific combination of apps.
We'd love to hear from you if you have some combo ideas of your own.
What have you got for us? Can I hear '6 hit' combo?