Bloom’s Taxonomy apps to enhance thinking skills in creative new ways

Blooms-taxonomyMobile devices have long held promise in that they allow students to tackle problems in almost as many ways as there are apps — that is to say a nearly infinite number. But whereas that flexibility is a boon to students, it can make it hard for educators tasked with the best apps to students to help them realize that potential.

The quest to help students enhance thinking skills and move up Bloom’s Taxonomy exemplifies the point. “It is obvious that the iPad and apps holds tremendous potential,” writes educator Diane Darrow on the website Appitic.com, “but the freedom they afford also requires that educators be able to determine their role in developing our students’ capability to analyze, evaluate, design, and produce content.”

APPitic.com, an app resource site with more than 6,000 apps in more than 300 subcategories, offers a number of apps pertaining to Bloom’s Taxonomy. Here, we’ve gathered a handful of those apps, arranged by Bloom’s levels, and you can access more on the APPitic site. All of these apps were originally curated by Apple Distinguished Educators via APPitic.

Creation

Apps that fit into the “creating” stage provide opportunities for students generate ideas, design plans, and produce products.

1. Storyrobe
Storyrobe is a mobile digital storytelling application. Create a digital story in three simple steps: Choose images and video, record the audio of the story, and then share with others. $1.

2. Explain Everything
With this beloved screencasting app, students can annotate, animate, and narrate explanations and presentations. $3

3. Puppet Pals HD
Create your own unique puppet shows with animation and audio. Simply pick out your actors and backdrops, drag them on to the stage, and tap record. Your movements and audio will be recorded in real time for playback later. Free.

Next page: Free mindmapping and conferencing apps

Evaluation

Apps that fit into the “evaluating” stage improve the user’s ability to judge material or methods based on criteria set by themselves or external sources.

4. Blogsy
It’s been called one of the best blogging tools on the iPad, as the app allows users to take advantage of what the iPad does best: Adding your photos and videos is as easy as dragging them from the media sidebar and dropping them into your blog post. It’s designed to make  writing blog posts as easy as possible, saving the hassle of jumping from app to app to manually copy/paste embed codes or links. $5

5. Fuze
This free app lets users run their own online conferences and meetings, using audio/video and chat for collaboration across the miles. Keynote, PowerPoint, and other documents can be shared right in the app. Free.

Analysis

Apps that fit into the “analyzing” stage improve the user’s ability to differentiate between the relevant and irrelevant, determine relationships, and recognize the organization of content.

6. Ideament (formerly Idea Sketch)
This app lets you easily draw a diagram — mind map, concept map, or flow chart — and convert it to a text outline, and vice versa. You can use Idea Sketch for anything, such as brainstorming new ideas, illustrating concepts, making lists and outlines, planning presentations, creating organizational charts, etc. Free.

7. Easy Chart
Creates a variety of charts from inputted data (think bar/line/pie/sidebar charts), and works even without an internet connection. Basic, but helpful. Free.

Knowledge

Apps that fit into the applying stage provide opportunities for students to demonstrate their ability to implement learned procedures and methods.

8. WolframAlpha
The app of the popular knowledge-based search engine, students can use data, computation, and sophisticated algorithms to answer their questions. $3

Next page: Comprehension and application apps

9. Outline+
The full-featured counterpart to Microsoft OneNote that complements the use of that app and lets users open their notebooks anywhere and sync them via DropBox. $3

Comprehension

Apps that fit into this “understanding” stage provide opportunities for students to explain ideas or concepts.

10. Essay Starter
This split screen app shows references alongside the blank essay area, so students can pull up whatever they’re working on while writing. $1

11. Screen Chomp
Create screencast-like videos by recording touch actions, adding photos, and audio and doodling, and then share those videos out to others on a variety of platforms. Free

Application

12. Doceri
Combining screencasting, desktop control, and an interactive whiteboard in one app. Control your presentations live with Airplay or through a computer.

13. iDesign
An app for vector and technical drawings, designs, and illustrations that can be made on the move using just your fingers. $8