Thursday, 22 January 2015

There's an app for that - Mobile Doc Scanner 3 (MDScan)

I am a bit of an operating system agnostic. I have a Windows PC, an iPad2 and an Android phone so I use a variety of programmes and applications and thought that I might post occasionally about a few that I have found to be most helpful in the classroom.

Mobile Doc Scanner 3 is one of the most useful apps on my phone. It does pretty much what it says on the box - turns your phone into a scanner. What makes it cool are the tools it uses to improve the quality of your scans. It corrects the perspective so that they look less "wonky". It also corrects the colour depending on the type of document which means for example that text documents have bright, white backgrounds, not grey. There are several useful output options including PDF and it is a simple process to email your documents or upload to something like Dropbox.

I first used this app in the classroom when I was sitting in on another teacher's lesson. She commented that she would have liked to have a document on the whiteboard but hadn't had time to scan it. I pulled out my phone, used the app to photograph the document and emailed to the teacher. She had it up on the board in just over a minute.

Another time this app came in handy was in one of my relief classes. The children had been working in groups on an activity and I wanted to make it easy for them to share their work at the end of the lesson. Out came the phone and within a couple of moments, the children's work was being projected on the class IWB. This had the added advantage that the children could annotate documents as they shared their thinking.

There is a free "Lite" version but I have found this app so useful that I had no hesitation paying a few dollars for the full app. As far as I know, it is only available on the Android platform but if you happen to have a suitable device, it is well worth the download.

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