Review by Patricia Monticello Kievlan, Common Sense Education | Updated October 2016

Educreations Interactive Whiteboard

Enliven lessons and presentations with easy-to-use presentation tool

Common Sense Says:
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Grades
6-12 This grade range is a recommendation by Common Sense Education and not the developer/publisher.
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Pros: You get just enough options to make creating presentations fun and effective.

Cons: This is a "one-take" creation app: you can save a draft presentation and there's some limited editing capability, but be ready to get your narration right on the first try.

Bottom Line: An easy, functional way to create presentations on the fly.

Undoubtedly, Educreations is an excellent tool for creating and sharing multimedia lessons for you and your students. Teachers can invite students to lessons with a link they send to students via the app or with a code; email lessons; embed them within a blog or website; or share via Facebook, Twitter, or on the Educreations website. You can also view and use the lessons created by other teachers on subjects ranging from history and science to art and ethics that they've chosen to make public. For students, you can demonstrate the app's functionality and then instruct tech-savvy students to use it for class presentations. You'll first want to go over the guidelines for privacy and fair use, since sharing can be public or private and users can pull content from many sources.

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Educreations Interactive Whiteboard makes it easy for students and teachers to create a multi-page presentation or lesson that can easily be shared with other students, teachers, or parents. You begin creating a whiteboard-style slide by adding images from the choices in the drop-down menu, or by writing (choose a color and finger-write or type using the on-screen keypad). You can move around to resize images and text, as well as draw directly on the images, and there's no limit to the number of slides in a presentation. There's also an option to record audio over the slides. Users can save, categorize by subject, and share their presentations. 

Previously, Educreations was a one-shot tool; by design, users couldn't save a draft in progress and the tool focused on on-the-fly creation. Later updates have added the draft feature; free users can save one draft presentation at a time and paid users can have unlimited drafts in progress. Subsequent updates have included some simple video editing tools, too. Subscription packages offer more storage, sharing, and download options; check the developer's website for the range of options to figure out which one best fits your needs.

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The best part of this app is that it's easy to use while still providing enough options from which to source and use content, add audio, and display images to create highly engaging, descriptive lessons and presentations. Your lessons and your students' presentations will be much more engaging with prerecorded audio, images, photos, and fun colors that help highlight points.

That being said, using Educreations means you and your students have to be organized. It's great that you can save a draft now (a big feature that's available in some other apps like this) and the audio recording feature now has some editing capability -- previously, you could only record your audio in one long take -- which makes the recording process a little more forgiving. Still, Educreations overall has fewer features than some other apps, most notably Explain Everything. While these more lightweight features might frustrate some users, Educreations is still a powerful tool, especially for students: as long as users have gathered the information they want to include before they start, creating a cool presentation can take only minutes. After all, it's never a bad thing for students to learn the power of planning ahead.

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Overall Rating
4

Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return?
4

Both the lesson creation and social sharing experiences are engaging and fun. The clean design minimizes distraction and allows greater creativity and freedom.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer?
4

Users must organize information before they start and experiment with ways to create and share lessons and presentations, making this a great exercise in planning ahead. For help (or fun), you can watch lessons posted by others. 

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students?
3

A simple help/FAQ list is available, but the app is very intuitive and many users may not need it.


Common Sense Reviewer
Patricia Monticello Kievlan Foundation/nonprofit member