Review by Leslie Crenna, Common Sense Education | Updated April 2013
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Photo Grid - Collage Maker

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A few navigation flaws, but a fun way for kids to get creative

Common Sense says
Teachers say (6 Reviews)
$avg_user_learning_rating
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Grades
3-8 This grade range is a recommendation by Common Sense Education and not the developer/publisher.
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5 images

Pros: Lots of exciting features and silly stickers will appeal to kids.

Cons: The interface isn't always intuitive to navigate.

Bottom Line: Flexible tool with some frustrating but harmless navigation issues.

This app could accompany science experiments with a visual component, such as the growth of a plant or development of mold over a period of time. For classroom use, kids could share one copy of the app and just save to individual folders in the gallery, though they would have access to each other's work that way as well.

Note that stickers include a pile of dog poo and a bloody ax.

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Photo Grid – Collage Maker is a photo app that allows you to create funny scenes by overlaying favorite photos or placing them into layouts. From the main menu, kids choose the kind of layout they want -- Grid HD for grids with varied layouts, Single HD for the usual single, and other options depending on your device (iOS users won't find as many choices). Next, the app takes them to their device's gallery (as well as cloud albums for Android), where they select the photos they want to use. Then, kids can rearrange images in the grid; change the layout of the grid; change the background; and for Android devices, add text, stickers, word bubbles, and more. Once they're finished, kids can save and share their creations.

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This is a relatively flexible photo collage app with a few navigational design flaws. There is some learning to be done, though: Kids can collect and present groups of photos that tell a story, like a historical timeline or steps in a set of instructions, and narrate their work through overlaid caption text. Students can use their knowledge of language to recall information from photographed experiences, and -- due to the tight size constraints -- choose words, phrases, and punctuation for effect and convey ideas precisely.

The main downside is the amount of navigation required to access all features. A dynamic top banner ad and app purchase button and panel are a bit intrusive, and there's unfortunately no ad-free version.

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Overall Rating
3

Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return?
3

Empowering features and lots of choices for creation. Design is solid, although navigating the app can feel unintuitive at times.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer?
3

Kids will be empowered by all the options here, and if they add captions to pics, they'll exercise their skills in analysis. Learning comes from making choices and sharing the results.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students?
2

No extensions are available, and there's not much support except via email to the developer.


Teacher Reviews

4
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Featured review by
Kristy (GAE) L. , Media specialist/librarian
Media specialist/librarian
P.S. 200 Benson
Brooklyn, NY
4
Great Tool for Manipulating Pics

Photo Grid Collage Maker is a great tool for sharing and working with the students' pictures. It provides a means of manipulating photos without purchasing or teaching photo programs. It would benefit students more if it had a clear help function, or voice directions. Students needs to be familiar with the app to use it to its fullest potential.

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