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Peer Review

MoMA Art Lab for iPad



Overall Numeric Rating:

5 stars
Content Quality: 5 stars
Effectiveness: 5 stars
Ease of Use: 5 stars
Reviewed: Jan 02, 2014 by Teacher Education
Overview: MoMA Art Lab app introduces young learners (preK-elementary) to works of modern and contemporary art that is housed at the MoMA. It allows learners to explore and create artwork with nine activities inspired by Henri Matisse, Alexander Calder, Elizabeth Murray, Sol LeWitt, Jim Lambie, Brice Marden, and others.
Type of Material: App for iPad. Free at the iTunes Store as of December 2013.
Recommended Uses: development of visual literacy skills and how to look at art
Technical Requirements: Requires iOS 5.0 or later.
Identify Major Learning Goals: The goals of this app are to help children understand and enjoy the art of our time by exploring lines, shape, color, and sound in a variety of ways. It fuels creativity and provides inspiration.
Target Student Population: Targeted for kindergarten and elementary students in particular, but anyone who wants to explore some visual art basics and understand more about creating and looking at art can benefit from the app.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: iPad with iOS 5.0 or later.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: The app provides multiple ways to develop visual literacy skills. There are nine different, highly-engaging activities based on the work of artists found in the MoMA Collection along with infinite possibilities of creating personal artwork. Making very good use of iPad capabilities, children use line, shape, color, artists' processes and inspirations to create artwork. This artwork can be saved and shared (turned off by default so parents can decide) with others via email or Twitter. There is an audio function for pre-readers using the app. This app is a 2013 Webby Award Winner and Parent's Choice Silver Award Winner.
Concerns: None.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: The nine activities offered in this app are powerful and engaging ways for developing visual literacy skills. Furthermore, they align with state and national art standards and support expected skills in the Common Core Standards. They include: create a mobile, experiment with (digital) paint, draw from instructions, create a sound compostion, draw with scissors, make a line design, collaborate on a group drawing, and make a chance collage. Creative prompts are provided for extra inspiration. The app can be used with individual students and small groups. Taking the content ideas from the iPad, lessons can also be developed for tutoring sessions, small groups, or whole classes, even if you have no iPad available.
Concerns: None.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: The design of the app is clean and organized. It is easy to navigate. Icons are easily understood. Moving, resizing, and adjusting shapes is easy. Changing colors, making a new piece of art, or deleting a piece is easy as well. The design allows for immediate use by children and offers infinite creative possibilities.
Concerns: None.