School, Education, Verizon, Apps, smartphones

DETROIT (WWJ) — Labor Day weekend is the unofficial end to the summer and that means tomorrow will be the first day of school for many across the state of Michigan.

As we turn our focus to the upcoming school year, Steve Van Dinter of Verizon Wireless has some exciting and helpful apps for students and their parents to download. One of the apps Van Dinter is high on is called “to do -ist.”

He says the app offers the opportunity for parents to keep track of their kids’ homework and class schedule.

“You can put in your upcoming assignments, your tests, even things like parents having meetings and stuff like that,” Van Dinter told WWJ Newsradio 950. “Most importantly everybody can see those because it goes through the cloud and they can be checked off. So as a parent you can make sure Johnny has done his math homework for tomorrow, and if not then you can have that conversation and make sure it gets done.”

Speaking of math, Van Dinter also suggested the app “Brainscape” — a digital version of flash cards that helps students learn a variety of subjects from math to foreign languages — as a great study tool.

If you’re worried about where your child’s whereabouts or safety after school, then Van Dinter suggests trying out a location app called “Family Locator.” The app provides parents the opportunity to track where family members are at all times.

“I always say have that conversation with your child and let them know that ‘as a parent we want to give you more responsibility and give you a bit more freedom, however we also want to make sure you’re safe and where you need to be,'” Van Dinter said.

He also has an app for teachers to check out for their classrooms. He says the “Google Chromecast Ultra” app can be used for interactive video learning in the classroom, and can replace that bulky overhead projector.

“You don’t think of YouTube as a great place for educational content but there is a lot of great educational content out there, and a lot of ways for us to integrate that into the classroom,” Van Dinter said. “So that’s a good one. Very inexpensive option but lots of cool benefits that come out of it.”

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