Common Sense Review
Updated April 2016

TinyTap, Create interactive lessons & games

Book-and-game builder empowers creativity, boasts vast content library
Common Sense Rating 4
  • Upload images, draw your own, or pull from the creation packs to create games or books.
  • Follow other creators to see their latest work.
  • Create games or books for students.
  • Browse and buy games made by others.
  • Older students can create their own simple games, too.
  • TinyTap Insights teacher dashboard view.
Extensive array of easy-to-use tools for creating interactive games.
Monthly subscription required to view student analytics. Game types tend towards the simplistic.
Bottom Line
With some patience and planning, this game maker can be a classroom game changer.
Amanda Bindel
Common Sense Reviewer
Classroom teacher
Common Sense Rating 4
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 4

Teachers can find or create games specifically for their own students, so content is engaging and customized. Older students can make their own games easily as well.

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

Teachers can create customized games or books for specific student needs, while students can create content based on their own skills and interests.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 4

Impressive breadth of games, although they can be challenging to use reliably for assessment because data and scoring vary. Paid version includes useful score- and progress-tracking.

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How Can Teachers Use It?

Teachers can use it as a resource, as a creation tool for themselves, or as a creation tool for students. As a resource, teachers can search for created content that fits their students' needs and let students play those games. As a personal creation tool, they can make games and books specific to the needs of their students for any content area imaginable, from shape recognition to foreign-language vocabulary. Students can become creators, too, making their own interactive games and books. TinyTap would be a fabulous addition to any teacher's iPad, but it would be especially handy for classrooms using project-based learning.

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What's It Like?

TinyTap is both a tool for creating interactive games and books and a vast library of precreated games and content. The app's "Creativity Museum" -- a searchable collection of games and books created by teachers, parents, developers, and authors -- is browsable by category and age and searchable by keyword. Are you interested in particular developers or authors? Follow them to get their latest content in your feed, and perhaps download a game to your device for students to play. Or, create your own game using the app's creation tools to import or create images, then add interactive elements, including questions and answers, video, and audio. An optional subscription to TinyTap Insights can extend the applications, giving teachers access to data on student performance.


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Is It Good For Learning?

It isn't always easy for teachers to find interactive, digital content for their students. TinyTap seeks to solve this by helping teachers make their own custom content tailored to their students' needs and by providing a library of content that's pretty impressive. Of course, teachers might find that creating exactly what they need isn't easy either, but they can make some simple-but-impressive games or books specific to the needs of their curriculum, a small group of students, or even a single student.

Much of the content is free, although developers have the option to charge for content. Think of it as a combination of Pinterest and the App Store along with a book- and game-authoring tool. The beauty of the app is its versatility: Teachers can find precreated content, make their own, or have students make their own games or books using the tool.

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