Sunday, March 22, 2015

Daily 5 Listen to Reading in French Immersion using Android Tablets

So the Ipads are gone from my classroom and have been replaced with 12 shiny new Samsung Galaxy tablets.  First order of business was to see which of the things that I was able to so with my students on the Ipad, I could still do on the tablet. Figuring out how to do listen to reading was top of my list.

There are many individual books available in the Google Play store. Most of the free books do contain advertising or have limited features.

I did find a few free apps that are worth checking out.

Pierro Pierrette
Cover art
Le secret de la lune

Lisbon labs has a large selection of  french book apps however the apps includes advertising.

Cover artCover art

Cover art
Playtales Gold
Although free options do exist I decided that for simplicity and to save time and money it was best to pay for a subscription service instead. I settled on Playtales Gold . This service costs $25 a year. They have a free version but the advertising is so frequent that it isn't worth looking at. We chose Playtales Gold because it offers books in multiple languages and I am at a bilingual school. By selecting language from a drop down I can limit students to only reading French books and our English teachers can still use the app with their students using by changing the language to English.
PlayTales Gold - screenshot
I also love that I get to pick which books I download on each tablet and which books kids have access to on their bookshelf. This allows me to download books appropriate to students levels. Our tablets are numbered and I can ask students to choose a tablet at their reading/listening level if I choose.

PlayTales Gold - screenshot

A note about French apps:

Just like with the ipad when you change to language of your device you also change the language of many of the apps you install. Some apps will appear to be in English but once you change the language in the settings you can use them in French too.

What I learned at school today? The switch from apple to android is not going to be a problem for Daily 5 listen to reading. There are free apps out there and apps like Playtales make it easy for my students to access a large variety of books easily.  My next step is to try and figure out how to get kids on youtube safely. Are you using listen to reading apps on the android? What is your favorite? Any advise about how to connect to youtube without exposing students to adds and limiting content?

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