Tech Toys (and Tools) for Learning

Read about it in Edutopia…

A whole new trend is about to explode in the educational app world. You may be familiar with the new tech that allows for apps to interact with tangible objects. This enhanced interactive technology is undoubtedly one that will change educational apps as we know them. Soon, the pairing of augmented reality with extensive curriculum guides will be commonplace in the classroom. Indie developers are producing a wide range of products that focus on spatial awareness, language development, number sense, problem solving, and motor skills, as well as an introduction to literacy, math, and the sciences.

What I find most exciting about this trend is the ability to get manipulatives back in the hands of children while simultaneously allowing them to interact with digital tools. As an educator, I’m relieved to know that learning through virtual technologies is able to occur in conjunction with physical play, all while fostering creativity. Suddenly there has emerged a balance between digital play and physical, imaginative, and cognitively engaging play. Kids have always learned best when they have the ability to engage all of their senses during play. The most powerful learning happens when theintegration of body, mind, and brain are incorporated simultaneously. Promoting active learning can teach and model concepts and skills; children can then generalize those skills into real-time experiences and their daily routines off-screen. The Future Is Here!

I did not refer to any of these physical items as toys due to the misconception by some that toys aren’t for learning. Have I missed any apps paired with physical objects that you are using at school or at home? What else should we be considered? Please tell us about it below in the comments.

Also, Edutopia received a comment about an app that needed to be on this list. My original article was also most twice the size and did include other companies that are forging ahead in this digital space. Edutopia told me part two’s don’t do well so I am publishing the second part of the article here at Teachers With Apps.

Tech Toys (and Tools) for Learning Part 2

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