APP-solutely Perfect App

Choosing an appropriate app for your classroom can be challenging. Tony Vincent of Learning in Hand has created Educational App Evaluation Checklist to help you decide if the app you’re considering is right for your needs and goals. Vincent was a classroom teacher for 15 years and writes a blog to helps teachers effectively use all kinds of mobile and digital learning.

Book-apps engage students with reading and help them focus their attention on content.

LESSON PLAN: Prairie Habitat

PRAIRAPP-Cvr-LgThis is the Prairie That Nature Built book-app takes children on a vivid journey above, below, and all around. Underground views show “the diggers, with tunnels so steep, making soft burrows where prairie pups sleep.” Aerial views show “the birds that sing and fly, chomping the insects that bring pollen by.” Plus the grazers, the predators, fire, and rain each have an important role in this dynamic habitat.

Suggested Grade Level: K-3 (but enjoyable and informative for older children)

Materials: The Prairie That Nature Built Book App, available through iTunes.


  1. Students choose between two options: “Read to Me” or “Read to Myself.”
  2. While they read or listen to each page, they can bring the book to life by touching the animals to see them do distinctive true-to-life actions.
  3. Then students can play the “Matching Game” to discover how many creatures they can correctly match with their names. Each page of the game gives them immediate feedback.
  4. Reading “Prairie Fun” gives kids scientifically accurate, simple-to-read information about prairies and each of the books featured animals.

Common Core Standards (ELA 1-3)

  • ELA Reading Information Text: Details: k.1, 1.1, 2.1, 3.1; Craft and Structure: 1.7. 2.7, 3.7

Next Generation Science Standards (DCI 1-3)

  • LS1: From Molecules to Organisms: Structure and Processes
  • LS2: Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics

Check out a youtube demo of the Prairie app.


subscribe     Blog by Carol Malnor I love making connections: kids and nature, science and reading, fun and learning. I discovered the joy of connecting Dawn Publications' books with kids when I was a classroom teacher. Dawn's books were easy to incorporate into my lessons and the kids loved them. I used picture books with students of all ages, from primary school all the way up through 9th grade. Over the years, my relationship with Dawn changed and developed, and I authored Dawn’s Teacher’s Guides as well as writing books for children 4-14 years old. ARTICLE How to Use Creative Nonfiction Picture Books in Support of Common Core and Science ACTIVITIES Dawn Publications STANDARDS Common Core State Standards Next Generation Science Standards National Science Teachers Association Picture Perfect Science   OTHER FAVORITES Dawn Publications Children and Nature Network
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