Website and app reviews

By Nigel Paull

Website and apps reviewed for school library staff.

The boat
This website links the award-winning interactive graphic novel The Boat with classroom activities and background information. Based on the poignant story from Nam Le, this multimedia adaptation offers insight into the Vietnamese refugee experience, and is suitable for secondary students.
SCIS no. 1764455 

Caring for your collections
Emanating from the National Library of New Zealand, this informative guide provides practical advice on how to best preserve and care for collections of books, artworks, digital images, photographs, and sound recordings. Its content also includes digitising collections, disaster recovery, and links to further information.
SCIS no. 1764496 

Digital learning resources
The National Film and Screen Archive offers links to thousands of Australian video and audio clips that are available to download or stream. The website features teaching notes, resources, and classroom activities related to the audiovisual content.
SCIS no. 1212021

Ice and sky: the history of climate change
This comprehensive, interactive website outlines the career and discoveries of glaciologist Claude Lorius, ‘the first scientist to prove the impact of human activity on our climate’. The website unfolds the history and ramifications of climate change. Students will be absorbed by the visual presentation, and teachers will appreciate the range of quality material available.
SCIS no. 1764544 

Indigenous Literacy Foundation
ILF is a charity that aims to address the literacy levels of children in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Founded by members of the publishing industry, ILF focuses on supplying culturally and developmentally appropriate books, publishing books in the communities’ first language and in English, and raising awareness of remote Indigenous literacy needs.
SCIS no. 1534140

Inside a dog
An initiative of the State Library of Victoria’s Centre for Youth Literacy, this site encourages young adults to explore the works of Australian and international writers, share reviews, contribute to blogs and forums, and join a book club.
SCIS no. 1276536 

Learning potential
Published by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training, Learning Potential presents advice for parents on how to increase their involvement in their child’s learning, which is likely to enhance learning outcomes. Relevant information and resources are available for all school years. The app is available from the App Store and Google Play.
SCIS no. 1764560

LEGO Movie Maker
This free iPad and iPhone app allows students to create stop-motion movies using their own LEGO minifigures. The has several useful features, including soundtracks, speed adjustment, colour filters, dialogue and title cards, and sound effects.
SCIS no. 1764595

Librarian art, posters & framed artwork
If your library is in need of a spruce up, this commercial website offers an array of artwork and posters. Find a wide range of librarian-related items, including T-shirts, coffee mugs, ties, stickers, mousepads, postcards, and bags.
SCIS no. 1764715

Science360 for iPad
Hundreds of science and engineering images and videos are available within this app, which was developed by the US Government’s National Science Foundation. Science360 features a breaking news feed, and the capacity to save images within the app for later use or to share them via social media or email. Also available from Google Play.
SCIS no. 1764741

Splash : STEM!/stem
The ABC Splash website has a broad selection of STEM resources, offering K–12 teachers pertinent curriculum linked videos, games, discussions, and news. Topics include makerspaces, robotics, coding, nanotechnology, engineering, design, construction, and careers. You can browse by subject or by year level.
SCIS no. 1702474

Walker Books classroom
Walker Books have developed bibliographies, primary and secondary teaching notes, and classroom ideas mapped to the Australian Curriculum for their range of books. Cross-curriculum resources include sustainability, the cultures and histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, and Australia’s engagement with Asia.
SCIS no. 1764780

The internet sites selected in Website and app reviews are often of a professional nature and should be initially viewed by teachers and library staff to determine suitability for students. The links, content and address of these sites are subject to change.

Nigel Paull

Nigel Paull

Teacher librarian

South Grafton Public School, New South Wales