Oklahoma Stories

Apps for a Lifetime of Learning

By Joanna Mueller August 2021

Learn new skills and master old ones.

young girl looking at laptop through virtual teaching
Photo by Aleksandra Suzi- stock.adobe.com

Learning is usually associated with school, but people of all ages can benefit from a bit of brain exercise now and again. Remember, the goal isn’t to be an egghead know-it-all, but to continue growing and improving yourself throughout your entire lifetime. If you’re looking to keep your mind sharp or help a student in your life tackle new skills, here are some apps that make continued learning easy and accessible for brains of all ages.

Lumosity

Lumosity website

When is a mobile game more than just a game? Probably when it’s based on scientifically validated tasks proven to help improve memory, attention, mental flexibility and problem-solving. With Lumosity, the games are all based on proven cognitive training exercises developed by leading brain researchers. Before starting, users are invited to take a quick Fit Test of three core games which provides the app with their baseline performance. From there they receive daily workouts tailored to their strengths and weaknesses as they progress. The result is a fun and easy way to substitute a bit of learning in place of your usual social media check-ins throughout the day.

Photomath

Photomath website

Anyone who has ever struggled to solve a math problem knows how difficult it can be to figure out where you went wrong. You clearly think you’re following the correct steps, but somehow the answer you get never turns out to be the correct one. It’s frustrating and confusing, but Photomath helps take some of the mystery out of solving math problems. Photomath uses your phone’s camera to scan problems spanning basic arithmetic to calculus then walks you through step-by-step to the correct answer. The app even offers multiple explanation methods to cater to both the “new” and “old” math crowds.

IXL

IXL website

While it doesn’t have a free version like the previous programs, IXL is an amazing supplement for students of all ages. It offers curriculums for grades K-12 with real-time diagnostics to track progress and challenge areas. The math and language arts programs are especially robust and help students practice and reinforce skills they are currently learning in class. Just select the grade level and skill and you’ll be given practice questions with full explanations for each answer. This program saved my son (and me) countless times during our homeschooling experiment last year and we’ll definitely be looking to use it again going forward.

SoloLearn

SoloLearn website

Those looking to boost their tech skills, either for career or curiosity’s sake, should check out SoloLearn’s free code learning app. They offer more than 20 courses, covering all the most popular programming languages. Regardless of your experience level, SoloLearn has a course to fit your needs and get you writing functional code right from the start. Each program helps advance your skills gradually with a combination of lessons and real-world practice. You can even earn a certificate to show off your newly acquired skills. Since the app is available on the web and on mobile you’ll be able to practice anywhere, anytime.

EdX

EdX website

Ever wanted to take your education further, but never had the money or opportunity to make it happen? Massive Open Online Courses offer the chance for anyone to experience quality education online. EdX isn’t the biggest of the MOOCs, but as a non-profit partnered with the world’s leading universities it offers over 3,000 free courses that anyone can enroll and participate in. The EdX catalog offers classes in everything from art to quantum computing so you can expand your knowledge base. You can even opt for the paid programs to earn verified certificates or work toward full degrees.

Category: Oklahoma Stories
Photo by Aleksandra Suzi- stock.adobe.com

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