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App creation made easy

Published on 14/01/14

Making an app might sound a challenge and I suppose that it is – at least at first glance. Not being able to see the code behind the apps is what creates much of the mystery
Making an app might sound a challenge and I suppose that it is – at least at first glance. Not being able to see the code behind the apps is what creates much of the mystery.

However, imagine that you can start to build you own app, for iPad, within may be just a few hours. That is exactly the opportunity given to our students. The result? Almost immediately students want to know more, to create more – pushing technical boundaries.

App club is well under way in our senior school (also in the 6th form). With the help of  Mr Rob Percival, formerly of our maths department, students are using the SPFapp.com website (devised by Mr Pervical) to create simple apps. The idea is that the app creator allows students to focus on the content rather than on the coding itself – mastery of which would take a long time and could be a barrier to the enthusiasm. Mr Percival says, “The beauty of this is that the vast majority of what they do is independent. Learning this way is largely by experiment. The technical aspects are being picked up almost without them realising.” So far, 50 students have been attending the weekly session with a further group in the 6th form of around 20.

Dasha, year 11 (10th grade), explained the workings of her app for testing Ancient Greek grammar. “The point is, there’s no real commercial market for such a thing – it is so niche! That’s why it is so great to be able to make our own apps to do what we want and need.” Emi, year 8 (7th grade) showed us her app – a recipe collector. The video above shows us how it works – not bad for 2 weeks’ work!