How I Use It
I used the Kidomatic app with five classes of kindergarten students who are overwhelmingly ELL. I planned to have the students take photos, decorate them, then explain what they created using rich, descriptive language. The stickers provided with the free app are entertaining, but they are limited so the descriptions became very repetitive. The students had a hard time restraining themselves and many covered the photos with as many stickers and letters as possible. The students had a lot of fun, but I could see the appeal beginning to wane after 20 minutes. If I were to use it again, I would do a session of whole group free play first so the students could familiarize themselves with it and get the sillies out. Then I would follow-up in a small group for a writing assignment where the students could create a story based on the image they created. The app allows users to use the camera as front-facing or rear-facing. While this gave them more options to take a selfie or snap a photo of a friend, some of the students seemed hurt or confused when photos of them were decorated and others laughed at them.
As a teaching tool, Kidomatic offers little for a classroom setting. It is very easy for our youngest students to use and find fun for a short time, but beyond that I don't see much value in it. The in-app purchases are not displayed with locks so many of the students kept clicking on the icons. The audio sounds are loud. The markers are very pale so they do not add much to the photos, and unwanted letters appear on the photo when you scroll through the alphabet to write a word. The students said that they wished there were more stickers of different types to use. Most of the students gave this app a thumbs up. They clearly found it entertaining, but it didn't provide enough educational benefit for me to recommend it.