How I Use It
At our school, we have a 1:1 iPad program in grades 6-8. Several of our middle school teachers have used Puppet Pals as a project option for assignments. Our Spanish teacher has had students record conversations in Spanish, which she was able to use as an oral language assessment. Our Social Studies teacher has had students recreate events in history to show their understanding. I teach a Technology class for our middle school students. I put students in groups, assigned them a topic related to internet safety/cyberbullying and had them create a Puppet Pals puppet show giving information and tips related to their topic. I've even heard of a Math teacher at a nearby school having her students create a puppet show to explain the history of the Pythagorean theory! In our elementary classrooms, students have used Puppet Pals to create puppet show book reports. So many uses for this app!
I am all about apps that I can figure out in less than 10 minutes! Puppet Pals is definitely that kind of app! I love that it walks you through the steps necessary to set up your puppet show. First, you choose your characters. Then, you select your scene backdrops. Then, you are ready to begin recording your puppet show! The free version of Puppet Pals comes with limited characters & backdrops, while the paid version gets you LOTS more "actors" and backdrops. A cool feature of Puppet Pals is that you can create your own actors and backdrops, using photos stored in your camera roll. (Don't worry. It sounds complicated, but Puppet Pals walks you through it!) My students even figured out that they could add a prop to their puppet shows by creating the prop as an "actor" in the show. I love that this app is super easy to use, that the kids can totally create a puppet show on their own without needs lots of assistance, and that the app can be used in a variety of subject areas. I also love that the kids can quickly export their puppet show to their camera roll, which makes for easy sharing with me via Dropbox or Google Drive (or whatever your preferred sharing method is).