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Making Apps in Class

I was reading some interesting statistics about apps the other day and found out that the average app usage time has been increasing for years now. People are using apps more than ever before and luckily, mobile apps have been embraced by educators at an incredible rate. But, very few teachers possess the knowledge or skills necessary to create their own apps. Moreover, the act of creating an app is a tremendously educational process – one that every student should be exposed to. Whilst not many people know how to do this, the information is accessible. Once the app is created, people can decide to look into monetization app methods if they want to make some money off the app. This will help them to recover some funds and invest in the app’s future.

Software programming is a skill that could be critical for many young people who want to pursue a career in software development. The tech boom of the last decade demonstrates how technology may be the way that students can embrace their creativity while also developing successful careers. Of course, developing an app is more than just learning how to program one. Once the app is made, knowing how to advertise app and marketing them to their audience will be just as important. However, this opportunity for students can only be realized if their teacher encourages their students to learn these skills.

Working with a team of educators, we created two online teacher professional development courses. One course focuses on making apps in the classroom with the Android-specific “App Inventor” tool, and the other focuses on iPhone/iPad app creation using web apps combined with PhoneGap Build. Check out this example of the best web app I’ve ever made: Super Cow Poke!

I’ve given a number of talks and training sessions on making apps in the classroom. As a reference, you can check out the resource page from my talk at the 2013 MACUL conference.