What’s on Her iPad?

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Yesterday I wrote about my son’s app choices for his iPad. Today we will visit Lauren! Lauren is our lovely 24 year old daughter. She is a graduate of Azusa Pacific University and currently works in Mammoth Lakes as a professional runner with Asics / Mammoth Track Club training for the Olympic Marathon Trials. She loves running and a healthy lifestyle. If you want to visit her blog, you may visit it here. 

It didn’t surprise me that she had the FloTrack app. However, since it is on her iPad, I don’t think she uses it much. She uses her Garmin for tracking her running.

Lauren takes her faith seriously and enjoy using the Bible app and SheReadsTruth. I enjoy both as well. The Bible app is great for just reading the Bible using any version, sharing verses with friends, or following a reading plan. SheReadsTruth combines social media and God’s word in devotional content. They have beautiful pictures that can easily be shared on social media. It has bookmarking, journaling, and sharing capabilities.

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Lauren enjoys Instagram and taking pictures. Thus, the following apps reflect her love of photography and blogging.


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Easily brighten up photos with frames, stickers, and colleges. They can easily be shared via Instagram.

InstaFrame is another photo collage app that she uses.  I downloaded another one I found on her iPad – Font Candy. Yes, I liked the name!

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I use Font Candy to add typography to photos. It’s easy, fun, and shares on Instagram.  Here is an example of a picture edited with Font Candy. (I took the photo in Mozambique, Africa.)


Finally, I need to mention two tried and true apps – Spotify and Pinterest. 

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Spotify is a great way to listen to music. Search for any artist or album and listen for free. Over Christmas vacation, I searched for “Charlie Brown Christmas” music and found a great station. Just listening to it gave me smiles and giggles! It’s true – it helped me win a game of Farkle, I’m sure of it. What I also enjoy is personal recommendations – I always find new artists I enjoy!

Finally, I’ll end with Pinterest.  Believe it or not, I started on Pinterest years ago when it first started by beta/invitation only in 2010. I wasn’t really sure what to think of it. At that time, there weren’t a lot of people using it! Now – it has exploded to a value of over $5 billion! Lauren uses Pinterest mainly for recipe and gift ideas. I use Pinterest for education and professional development. Whatever you are trying to find, Pinterest will give you visual “pins” that will link you to great content. Be careful, though, as some pins will lead to scam sites.  According to Pinterest, “Pinterest is a tool to help you discover and plan things you want to do. When you find something that looks interesting, just Pin it! Pins are visual bookmarks that you organize and share the way you want.

With Pinterest you can:
• Plan projects—home remodels, car restorations, garden redesigns and other DIYs
• Dream up your next trip—outdoor adventures, road trips with friends, family outings and exotic vacations
• Collect your favorite things—illustrations, tattoo ideas, hilarious quotes, tech gadgetry and inspiring art and architecture”

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Watch for tomorrow’s blog where I will blog about what’s on my husband’s iPad!


What’s on His iPad?


My son had been waiting for the day – the day I would get a new iPad. That’s because he knew he would be getting my old one. In fact, he even drove me to CostCo about 2 months ago hoping I would buy one early. But I just couldn’t do it. Santa was very good to me and gave me a new Apple iPad mini. I wanted to downsize in size, and upgrade in memory! What’s the first thing he did with my old iPad? Wipe it clean! Yep, he took everything off so that he could start fresh. It got me thinking…what was he going to choose to put on it?

Hence, my blog posts the next few days will be a series on “What’s on His (or Her) iPad?”. I will showcase my husband (Lee), son (Brett), daughter (Lauren), and finally myself (me)! I always like to know what other people choose to put on their devices so I am hoping you will enjoy knowing as well!

We’ll start off with Brett, my son. He is 22 and studying Physics. He adores reading and anything math or science related so I wasn’t surprised that his apps reflected his personality.


His favorite app is Wolfram Chemistry. (View video here.)

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The app covers topics applicable to Introductory Chemistry, General Chemistry, and AP Chemistry including the ability to compute enthalpy, equilibrium constant, and theoretical yield of a reaction. It performs over 45 different computations. As a Physics and Chemistry tutor at a local college, he says it will be useful to quickly look things up as needed. Plus, he just thinks it’s cool.

He also really enjoys Math Pad.

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Basically, this app allows one to handwrite a complex math equation and it will be rendered into a digital equivalent for easy sharing. It exports the equation in LaTeX, MathML, or as an image.

Screen Shot 2014-12-29 at 10.20.19 AMAnd, I have to tell you that he is planning on getting a tatoo this week using this app. Yes, indeed. He is going to write out his equation, then bring it in via the app to give them a great digital version to work off of.

He only chose to download 3 more apps which are featured in no particular order.


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Brett’s morning routine is to watch a TED video. He always has something new he learns from TED!  He loves to share, “Did you know…” stories.


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Desmos is a graphing calculator app. “Plot functions, create tables, add sliders, animate your graphs, and more — all for free.” It can even be used offline!

Relaxing Sounds

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This one was a surprise to me! I guess he likes listening to relaxing sounds of nature! When I saw his iPad, he had either “wind” or “water” playing – I can’t remember. I do know he takes quick 20 minute power naps. Maybe this helps!

Be watching for my next blog featuring Lauren!

8 Things Highly Productive Students Do

Recently The Muse posted an article 8 Things Highly Productive People Do Every Morning. I was happy reading the article because I had already accomplished #1 – Finish one task right away. I had just completed an early morning blog post so I could check that off the list.


It got me thinking – this list is great not only for the workplace, but for students, as well. I have changed them up a bit to fit the student lifestyle.

1. Finish one assignment right away.  Set the tone right for the new semester. As stated by John Brandon, “Super productive people complete one task right away in the morning to set the tone and demeanor for the day. It’s a level set on attitude that says this is how your day will play out. It’s a springboard and orients your thinking.” Keeping with this level of thinking – do the same with school work. If you can get an assignment done right away, just do it.

2. Reward yourself.  Many of us are motivated by rewards. Yes, I am. Many of our courses are hybrid and it is difficult for students to stay “motivated” in the online portion. So – set up your own reward system that works for you. Ex. Check into all my courses online twice this week = one trip to Starbucks (or Peet’s Coffee and Tea – my favorite!).

3. Kill the bad attitude. Okay – I didn’t change this one. Don’t give in to negative remarks or thoughts. Go into the new semester with a bright and positive attitude. Students – or instructors – I’m speaking to all of us. I have been reading One Thousand Gifts and am reminded to give thanks daily. A thankful attitude can brighten up a sour attitude!

4. Eat healthy.  Thankfully, we have an AWESOME cafeteria on campus with local ingredients and a Farm to Fork station. With food that good, why eat junk? Stay away from the processed, fake food (that’s my name for it) and start eating food that is healthy. You’ll keep the weight off and feel better at the same time. That’s important to remember with the holidays here!


5. Schedule every assignment in advance.  Yes – write them in a planner (that you actually look at and use) or better yet, add every assignment to an online calendar system like Google Calendar or ClassOwl. Google Calendar lets you set notifications and send reminders as a text message. Why miss an assignment? Let Google remind you that it is due! You can receive your daily agenda in your email each day! Seriously, how cool is that?

6. Then, turn off your phone. Okay. At least stick it in your purse or pocket and don’t answer it every time it makes a sound. I do enjoy having students use their phones as a clicker response, but if you don’t NEED it in class, don’t even have the temptation near you. There’s enough time to talk and text. Just don’t do it in class unless requested by the instructor. It’s called manners.

7. Read homework and assignments more than once. Some students tend to read through the syllabus and never return. Or, they read through their assignment information once and put it down. Remember what Santa says about checking it twice. smile. If you find your mind drifting as you read through your textbook, stop. Go back to the beginning of the page(s) and read again or go back to it another time when you can devote your mind to absorbing the information.

8. Avoid the downers.  I kept this one the same, also. It’s similar to #3, but this time think about who you “hang” out with. Bad news people tend to spread bad news…and gossip. Avoid the gossip, spread a kind word and smile, and move along your way. Choose joy and decide to spread a little happiness to each person that you meet each day.


Thanks to John Brandon of Inc. for his original post 8 Things Highly Productive People Do Every Morning for the inspiration.

Flipped-Learning Toolkit

Have you thought about flipping your classroom? Edutopia recently shared a “Toolkit” from the pioneers, Jon Bergmann and Aaron Sams. They walk you through the steps in a six part video series.  At the bottom of the article are more resources for the flipped classroom and blended learning. Sounds like great Christmas vacation professional development to me (and FREE)! Enjoy!

Flipped-Learning Toolkit.

How to Study Effectively

I recently found this infographic from Indiana Jen’s post (original source Open Colleges). Thanks for sharing the infographic! Our finals are just about finished – but a great resource none-the-less.  By the way, I just won a year’s PRO subscription to Piktochart. I love using Piktochart for creating infographics. They offer amazing , easy to use templates and tools. How did I win? With a ridiculous Movember picture. Yes, if you are brave enough you may click the link. I’m glad being silly actually can win you something. (smile)

How to be Effective when Studying – Best Study Apps, Tools, Tips & Techniques by Open Colleges

24 Ways to Use Google Forms in the Classroom!

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Have you ever used Google Forms in your classroom? It is SO easy to use! Why use Google forms? How about a list of 24 great ideas…

  1. Create a Quiz.  Google form lets you easily create a quiz with multiple choice, check-box, text, and paragraph answers. You can even add images and videos to your forms!
  2. Entry Ticket or Exit Ticket.  Collect responses from your class regarding course content. If they had home, send the form at the beginning of class to find out how well they absorbed the material. Or, give the form at the end of class before they exit the room!
  3. Poll.  Create an easy poll and let students vote on their answer!
  4. Create a class survey – any topic!
  5. Create a “Getting to Know You” questionnaire
  6. Prayer requests (for schools where you can do this!)
  7. Question of the week.  Have students generate one question they have and submit each week. You can choose to answer the questions in class, or use the questions in a class discussion.
  8. Create an invitation
  9. Students may take notes in a Google form. Share the spreadsheet with the class so they all have access to the notes.
  10. Speaker evaluation
  11. Goal setting.  Ask students to set course goals using the form. Collect the information. At the end of the course, send another form to find out if they met their goal.
  12. Assign a topic.  Allow students to choose from a list their 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choice. You may also want to have them choose a partner.
  13. Personal Reflection
  14. “Flipped Classroom” assignment.  Include the video/lecture link and questions all in one form. This will embed into your learning management system. We use Moodle.
  15. Debrief a field trip
  16. Quick-write on any topic
  17. Behavior management
  18. Document your own professional development.  Fill out the form yourself any time you attend a training session or view a webinar! Let the spreadsheet keep track for you!
  19. Create a book review
  20. Peer grade class presentations
  21. “How are you today?” check-in
  22. Ask students to submit 3-5 words and use these words to create a Wordle.
  23. Arrange a meeting
  24. Brainstorm

Basically, if you want to gather data, it can be done using a Google form! Forms are visually attractive. It’s easy to add headings, pages, video, and images. Forms can be sent to individuals via email, or embedded into a learning management system. Decide whether respondents can see the responses or if they will be kept private. It’s up to you!