Brainly was included on practically every homework or “back to school” app list I investigated. The Brainly website, turned iOs/Android application, allows parents and students to ask questions about all things homework — for free. The site touts that 80% of all questions asked are answered within 10 minutes. The Android app had over 10,000 downloads, which I found encouraging because if I am going to turn to what is essentially crowdsourcing for help with homework, I certainly want to assured there is indeed a crowd to source.
You can log onto the app using your Facebook account or by creating a Brainly account. Questions are added by typing in a question in the query box. You can include a photo with the text if a visual aid is necessary.
In addition users collect points earned from logging in each day and answering questions, etc – these points appear to be used for a ranking system, which I guess appeals to some in encouraging participation – but not to me. But then again, I am the person who joined a FitBit team thinking the competition would motivate me to take more steps, and after two months, I’m still pretty sedentary!
Question and Answers can be searched by school level (Elementary, Middle, and High), as well as by subject. Your PERSONAL Questions and Answers are maintained separately, so although the app displays questions and responses as a scrolling page, much like Twitter, you do not have to scour through all of them to locate the questions you post or the answers you share. Merely select the “My questions” or “My Answers” options!
The app works much in the same way as the Brainly website, you post questions and get answers. You can also see other people’s questions and the responses. Very educational.
I’d be remiss not to mention, in my opinion, both formats require parental monitoring. For the obvious reason — you want to help determine if the answers they are receiving are accurate. However, it is also important to know that the website requires additionally parental monitoring because it allows for private messages. Anytime there is an open forum for speaking to children, sadly, not so nice people will discover it, and take advantage of it. For that reason, my preferred method for accessing Brainly would be the app, however with due diligence the website can be perfectly safe and very fun way to seek homework help.
Screentime Ninja (Free)
Recommended for children grades 1 – 6.
While some parents might think the idea of an 8 year old having a smartphone or tablet of their own as completely ridiculous, there are instances where this is not only acceptable but actually a necessity.
For instance, while my second grader does not have a cell phone, she will be receiving an iPad to assist in her education and communication (she is hearing impaired) through her school this year. I want her to enjoy the technology age she lives in but also very much appreciate apps such as Screentime Ninja to help me not only be a better keeper of time but also be that second pair of eyes on my daughter’s screentime. For example, during the crazy dinner hour, the bustle in the house can reach that point where our best intentions of keeping our children on the homework task can be derailed by dinner preparation, household tasks or catching up on email. Kids are great at recognizing distracted parents and taking full advantage.
Description from Google Play: “Tired of telling your kids to stop playing games on their mobile and do something useful? Screentime Ninja automagically blocks the device after a pre-set amount of time, but lets the kid earn more play time by solving math problems which are tailored to his/her school curriculum. If the child cannot solve a problem, Screentime Ninja will show how to solve it.”
**Warning, be sure to read the uninstall directions during the install process. The developers wisely created an uninstall process that deters our little technically savvy “brainiacs” from disengaging the app. Important to remember, uninstall or any adjustments to the app requires the parental password (so don’t lose it).
While I failed to pay attention to these instructions installing this did lead to my learning a whole new Android Skill – after I had to google what an App Drawer (App Tray) was! Want in on the secret: visit BEGIN WITH ANDROID, then you will be a little extra Android Savvy as well!
HomeWork App (Free)
Sometimes the best way to be tackle homework with great success is to be greatly organized. There are several options – you can search and try out which works before for you or your child. HomeWork App came up most often on other Top Homework App lists and videos I researched. I selected to share this one because I found it the most visibly appealing.
From the Google Play Store:
“The app has 5 main screens:
- Main Menu
- List with all homework assignments, sorted on date,
with counters for the amount of homework not “done” yet.
- List with all Exams, sorted on date,
- Timetable for the current day
- Timetable for the current week
Want more?? I don’t blame you, it was difficult to keep my list to only 3.
Here are some of additional lists and videos of Back to School Apps:
Copyright 2014 Allison Gingras