Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Gamify Vocabulary Learning: A Favorite Flashcard App!

Today the Collab Blog welcomes guest blogger Katie Owen, a Special Education teacher at Elk Grove.  She can be reached at @MsKatieOwen

Growing up, and for many years of teaching, I have studied vocabulary on note cards. We did games with them, wrote sentences with them, categorized them, used them for seating placement, etc. It was tough to keep it new and fresh (fun fact: index cards were first invented in 1760 by Carl Linnaeus - a Swedish botanist, zooligist and physician). Once I started to get students that had accommodations to receive material digitally and iPads trickled into my room, I decided that could change. One weekend I decided to go through 15+ flashcard apps on my iPad. I tried Evernote Peek, Chegg Flaschards, StudyBlue (which I did use for a while), Flashcards Deluxe, Flashcards+, Flash-Cards, Cramberry, A+ Flashcards Pro, and eventually found the one I am in love with: Flashcards [] by NKO Ventures, LLC.

Flashcards [⁛] allows you to create a class (in the free version you can have up to 30 students and 5 decks at a time). The students can join your class for free and copy the decks you have created. I start all of my decks with the root word on the front and the definition on the back. Students then add a reminding word on the front. On the back, they add a sentence and a picture (they can choose to draw or find a picture from their camera roll).

That is just where the vocabulary practice starts. Once students are done, there are many games the students can play. In the free version, that can be games like matching, true/false, and a crossword. In the paid version ($29.99), you get 100 Students and 75mb of server space - along with games like Flappy Dog and Ninja! Students can also do Q-Battle and practice their vocabulary words in a competition.


When students practice on their own deck, they get to see the sentence and drawings they created. After they feel like they know the words, I have them practice on the class deck where they just see the root word and definition. This also allows them to compete and be on the top of the class leader board:

Oh! We also made little avatars using Buddy Poke!

1 comment:

  1. This looks like a great resource. I'd like to recommend another resource It's called Word Pash. It is a new app for iOS that makes learning vocabulary a breeze. its fun and its free. here is a link for anyone interested. any feedback is greatly appreciated.




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