Top Pick

Best EdTech of 2014

Common Sense Education editors and reviewers rated and reviewed hundreds of learning tools in 2014, using our research-backed rubric and rigorous evaluative process. Out of that pack, these tools not only rated highly for engagement, pedagogy, and support, but stood out as truly head of the class.

Cookie Monster's Challenge Publisher: PBS KIDS
Unique games help young kids build essential school-readiness skills
Grades Pre-K-K
Type App
Price $2.99
Platforms Android, iPad, Kindle Fire, Fire phone
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
Gracie and Friends Birthday Cafe Publisher: First 8 Studios at WGBH
Numbers and quantity game has precise focus and superb scaffolding
Grades Pre-K-K
Type App
Price Free
Platforms iPad
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 3
Hooked on Phonics Learn to Read Classroom Edition Publisher: Hooked on Phonics
Research-based curriculum adapts beautifully to fun, easy-to-use app
Grades Pre-K-1
Type App
Price $49.99
Platforms Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Kindle Fire
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
TinyTap, Create interactive lessons & games Publisher: TinyTap Ltd.
Book-and-game builder empowers creativity, boasts vast content library
Grades Pre-K-5
Type App
Price Free
Platforms Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
ReadWorks Visit Website: http://www.readworks.org/
An ELA teacher's one-stop shop for reading-comprehension resources
Grades K-8
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Teaching Channel Visit Website: https://www.teachingchannel.org
See colleagues in action with digital PD for discussion and reflection
Grades K-12
Type Website
Price Free, Free to Try, Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
Teaching Tolerance Visit Website: http://www.tolerance.org/
Thought-provoking classroom resources support diversity education
Grades K-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
The Land of Venn - Geometric Defense Publisher: iMagine Machine LLC
Brilliant, wacky adventure game seamlessly integrates geometry
Grades 1-4
Type App
Price $2.99
Platforms iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 5
IF... The Emotional IQ Game
This product is no longer available.
Publisher: If You Can
Captivating journey cultivates kids' social and emotional skills
Grades 1-7
Type App
Price Free, Free to Try, Paid
Platforms iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
LightSail Publisher: LightSail Inc.
Robust, responsive reading tool measures meaningful literacy outcomes
Grades 1-12
Type App
Price By subscription
Platforms Android, iPad, Chrome
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
Shadow Puppet Edu Publisher: Shadow Puppet Inc.
Resource-rich video slide-show creator a gem for a variety of classrooms
Grades 2-12
Type App
Price Free
Platforms iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
Contraption Maker Publisher: Spotkin
Solve problems, puzzles, brain teasers while creating wacky machines
Grades 3-8
Type Game
Price Free, Paid
Platforms Mac, Windows
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Think Through Math Visit Website: http://www.thinkthroughmath.com/
Great adaptive learning comes with live teacher support, unique rewards
Grades 3-10
Type Website
Price Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Twelve a Dozen Publisher: Bossa Studios Ltd.
Engrossing math platformer puts problem-solving skills to the test
Grades 4-8
Type App
Price $4.99
Platforms iPad
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
Classcraft Visit Website: http://www.classcraft.com
Track behavior, motivate students with clever, cooperative game
Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price Free, Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Geddit
This product is no longer available.
Visit Website: http://letsgeddit.com
Response tool's clever content delivery supports students' confidence
Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
LittleBigPlanet 2 Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Accessible yet deep game creator will dazzle and challenge
Grades 4-12
Type Game
Price 19.99
Platforms PS3
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
Possible Worlds Publisher: Center for Children and Technology
Entertaining, well-researched games correct scientific misconceptions
Grades 4-12
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Mac, Windows
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
ThinkCERCA Visit Website: http://www.thinkcerca.com
Critical-reading program buoyed by high-interest texts, clear structure
Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price Free, Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Zamzee
This product is no longer available.
Visit Website: https://www.zamzee.com/
Unique activity meter and snappy website make exercise fun
Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price $29.00
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
PlayPosit Visit Website: http://www.playposit.com/
Simple design makes it easy to jump into interactive video
Grades 2-12
Type Website
Price Free, Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
GameMaker: Studio Publisher: YoYo Games Ltd.
One of the best creation tools available for aspiring game developers
Grades 5-12
Type Game
Price Free, Paid
Platforms Mac, Windows
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 5
Journey Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Gorgeous, moving adventure -- a jewel of social and emotional learning
Grades 5-12
Type Game
Price $14.99
Platforms PS3, PS4
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
Newsela Visit Website: https://newsela.com/
Absorbing daily news stories offer kids just-right learning content
Grades 2-12
Type Website
Price Free, Paid
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
DragonBox EDU
This product is no longer available.
Visit Website: http://wewanttoknow.com/teachers/
Innovative algebra game's classroom version has teacher tools
Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free to Try, Paid
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
EdPuzzle Visit Website: https://edpuzzle.com/
Crop, customize, and remix online videos for your classroom
Grades 3-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Facing History and Ourselves Visit Website: https://www.facinghistory.org/
A wealth of resources explore racism, prejudice, and anti-Semitism
Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
Papo & Yo Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Powerful tale of alcoholism uses puzzles and metaphor to build empathy
Grades 6-12
Type Game
Price 14.99
Platforms Linux, Mac, PS3, Windows
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
Curriculet
This product is no longer available.
Visit Website: http://www.curriculet.com
Elegant, customizable e-reader empowers close reading, boosts skills
Grades 2-12
Type Website
Price Free, Free to Try, Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Portal 2 Puzzle Maker Publisher: Valve
Mind-bending level editor for beloved physics game
Grades 7-12
Type Game
Price $19.99
Platforms Mac, Windows
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 5
Big History Project Visit Website: http://www.bighistoryproject.com
Fascinating look at life's bigger questions offers a fresh perspective
Grades 9-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 5