Become the Teacher's Pet with these BlackBerry apps!
Doesn’t it seem like I have a bad habit of pointing out what some people fear and dread? It’s not that I get any pleasure out of it (bah-hahahaa). Like it or not, it’s almost time for school. It’s a new year; a year full of possibilities, memories and accomplishments. For some the joy (or pain) starts with a trip to get school supplies. If I were you, I would hold off on the sighing, whining and shuffling of your feet while the shopping cart fills up. Sharing in the excitement with your parents will probably pay off; and I’ll tell you why. Once the positive vibe is felt by all, you may find it easier to convince them that you need a BlackBerry this year. Tell them how it will keep you organized. Tell them how it will help you keep in touch. Tell them how it *ahem * won’t contribute to you social life. Tell them how you visited CrackBerry.com and read their Guide to Student Apps. Last year, we told you how to go back to school BlackBerry style. This year, I decided to expand on that list and give you another collection of applications; you know, for extra credit.
For this independent study, I mean, guide, we will focus on applications geared towards students (and perhaps teachers as well). Last time we tried to cover different aspects of your life surrounding school, so it’s best we deal with what you need FOR school.
Blackboard Mobile Learn
The Blackboard company is dedicated to enhancing the experience of education by helping instructors create unique learning techniques. With Blackboard Mobile Learn, students can gain access to announcements, grades, course blogs, new assignments and more (if your school has enabled it). The information you can view is available thanks to the connectivity to Blackboard’s teaching and learning software. You can view information and maps, view course blogs and see where everyone is excelling or if a tutor may be needed. Social cliques are dissolved, as everyone can bask in BlackBerry connectivity. Jocks blogging with band geeks, emo kids sharing info with the book club. There will be less wedgies and more student successes in school. Okay, maybe that’s a stretch, get it? Blackboard Mobile Learn is free.
You know how your school year is going to go if you are assigned homework on the first day. It could be worse; you could have had a test as well. My advice is to keep on top of your assignments, as you may want to keep the ‘dog ate my homework’ excuse to a minimum (in case it actually happens). When using the Work Organizer application, you will have a better handle on your due dates. Your homework will be organized by priority, date, name and so on. I liked the option to send your homework status off (say to your teacher or parents); in case you were too chicken to explain it in person. Graph views are available, detailing how you stand as far as completion goes. Work Organizer is available for $3.99.
What are your study habits like? Do you review your notes every night or do you cram the night before a test? MemTool Automated Learning provides users with flashcards to study with. The material it covers is up to you, as it is you who inputs the information as answer-question pairs. By using an algorithm to determine what information may first lose its grip on your brain, MemTool will remind you when to review. Soon your brain will be filled with the knowledge you require. You will only have to worry about how to apply it. MemTool Automated Learning is available for $4.99.
2+2 =4, 4 + 4 = 8, sinh(6 + 6A30) + 9^(2 + 3i) = -35983.1061 + 5164.86171i. Hunh?!? It’s been a while since I’ve seen equations like that last one. I may be rusty, but I’m sure I would have come up with that solution…eventually. If I can’t, I can turn to Neelam to handle it. In fact, it’s able to handle RPN (Reverse Polish Notation) logic, complex numbers, polar input and more. With more than 20 physical constants included, you’ll spend less time searching for information to solve the problem and more time actually solving it. Trust me, its uses go far beyond displaying the solution to (25 x 40) + (8000 – 92) - 900. Neelam: a Complex Number Scientific Calculator is $5.99.
I remember getting my SPC card in high school (don’t ask how long ago). In Canada, the SPC is a type of loyalty program for students. It gives students discounts and deals at various restaurants, stores and more. The application allows you to search for locations that accept the SPC card. You can also stay on top of extra special deals that may pop up in your region from time to time. The SPC application is free.
Protractor for BlackBerry
Always make sure you go to class prepared. That means you remember your books, pens, binders and BlackBerry. Launch the Protractor application and you will be able to measure angles with great precision. The application provides support whether you are using a track pad or touch screen. Protractor provides details using both degrees and radians. Protractor for BlackBerry is available for only $0.99.
Ah the lab partner; one of the biggest decisions you will need to make. Do you choose a partner who’s cute (and might have chemistry with) or someone smarter than you (and might PASS Chemistry with)? I suggest picking your BlackBerry. ChemLabPartner houses a temperature converter, a molecular weight calculator and the periodic table of elements. The information is easily navigated and organized. Simple and straightforward, ChemLabPartner helps you go for the aurum. ChemLabPartner is available for $3.99.
The key to keeping on top of the school year is staying organized. Keep you locker neat, your gym clothes clean, your lunches eaten (not stuffed in your locker) and your schedule organized. Student Diary offers to help your student life on a student’s budget. You can track your assignments, schedule and projects, while managing due dates or alerts at the same time. Student Diary also allows you to contact your teachers, via phone or email. Sounds a lot like Student Docket. Student Diary is available for free.
This application provides a way to easily discover and track your GPA, whether you are looking for your accumulative or term GPA. All you need to do is input your personal information, such as credits, grade and term. Student GPA will then come up with your GPA. This application offers easy access to your stats, whenever you may need them. Student GPA is available for $2.99.
We can’t leave the Teachers out of this now can we? They need to stay organized as well. If not, how will they provide the future leaders of our world with the proper education? With Teacher Pro, teachers can keep track of students, their data and even study habits (if they have any to speak of). You can also manage your schedule including; meetings, extra curricular activities or parent/teacher interviews. Heck, you can even make note of which student brings in an apple for you. Teacher Pro is currently on sale for $9.99.
BlackBerry users are also inundated with countless applications/launchers. Designed by, and for, various schools and such; including SimonSchool, Analogies Ace GRE Exam Prep and UR Mobile (University of Rochester). Check with your school and see what kind of mobile access they offer. If you are using any applications not listed in this or the previous article, raise your hand – I mean- leave a comment.