Educational technology tips for teachers, librarians and schools.

14 Amazing Digital Tools Students Will Beg to Use

14 Amazing Digital Tools Students Will Beg to Use

By Mike Daugherty

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all of the apps, extension, and websites that are available in this technology-rich world, and we’re here to help!

Check out this list of must-have digital tools for every teacher, sorted by content area.

More: 13 New EdTech Tools to Boost Engagement

Language Arts

These writing tools will become a staple in your classroom.

1. Draftback

Draftback lets you view a short video showing the creation of any Google Doc. Teachers can watch as it goes from a blank page to the final version. This is an excellent tool to analyze group work, allowing you to see who contributed what to a document. Draftback will also show you when large amounts of text were pasted onto a document, which helps you tackle plagiarism.

2. Cite This For Me

Cite This For Me is a fantastic tool for citing a wide variety of sources, ranging from standard magazine articles to podcasts. Once you’ve entered the publication information of your source, Cite This For Me gives you the option to choose the format: AMA, MLA, or Chicago. After all sources are cited, the app creates a perfectly formatted bibliography that can be copied into your doc.


Make your students see just how fun math can be.

3. Desmos

Desmos is a web-based graphing calculator designed for any students looking to tackle advanced mathematics on a Chromebook or in a browser window. This tool allows students to work on high level graphing problems, create tables, write regressions and more.

4. Monster Math Flash Cards

This site is amazing for younger learners; students can practice addition, subtraction, and multiplication with entertaining creatures. The monsters help keep the student engaged with their learning and you can customize the range of numbers to quickly personalize the app for each student.


Interactive period table and “Google Earth for the human body”—school is so much more fun these days.

5. Chem Reference: Periodic Table

Chem Reference is so much more than a traditional periodic table. This interactive table provides quick access to element properties, visualizations, conversions, and constants. This is a phenomenal resource for both students and teachers.

6. Human 3.0

Human 3.0 is a virtual 3D model of the human body that contains a massive set of models, conditions, and interactive selections. ABC News described it as “Think Google Earth, but for the human body.” Some of the content is available only in the premium version; however, the free version is still a full-featured work of art.

More: 7 Apps for Combining SAMR and Science

reading too much? Whooos Reading

Social Studies

Your students will travel back in time and across the sea.

7. Today in History

This app is easy to use and fun for students. Simply click the month and select the date to view all of the historical events that took place on that day. It’s a great way to start your class every day.


Newspapermap shows a world map with pushpins that indicate the popular newspapers of the region. Start by selecting the newspaper you want to read and then the language you want to read it in. Presto! You’re now reading the local paper of a country that’s thousands of miles away. Social studies teachers can use this site to teach students how different places view and report world events.


Fun design tools for your students AND you.

9. Pixlr

Pixlr has two awesome image editing tools to choose from. Pixlr Editor is similar to Photoshop or Gimp, but is entirely web based. With it, you can transform images, add and edit layers, and adjust colors to create masterpieces all inside your browser. Pixlr Express is geared toward adding filters, borders, and creating collages with your existing photos. Both are powerful (free!) tools that run in your web browser.

10. Canva

This is by far my favorite tool on this list. Canva was created for people who need professional graphics, but don’t have a visual eye (like me). You can choose to create a wide variety of pre-sized images such as a Facebook header, blog post graphic, or a Tumblr banner. You (and your students) can also choose from well designed, easy-to-edit templates or search from the extensive library to find just the style you want. The site is all drag-and-drop, which makes editing a breeze. Students can use this site in so many creative ways!

More: 6 Photography Apps and Ideas for the Classroom


These mainstream music tools are so much fun in the classroom setting.

11. SoundCloud

SoundCloud allows you to record audio and share it with ease. Music teachers can ask students to record themselves playing their instrument at various intervals throughout the year. Students can upload the recording to SoundCloud and share it with the teacher through an automatically generated link.

By uploading audio over several predetermined intervals, both the student and the teacher can listen to the progression as the year goes on. SoundCloud can be used by foreign language teachers in a similar fashion.


This relatively new website is kind of like Google Docs for sheet music. You can create sheet music with notes, measures, dynamics, lyrics, and chords all within your web browser; you can even invite others to collaborate with you in real-time by sharing the “doc.” When finished, you can save it online or even print it out.

Health / P.E.

13. Explain Everything

We know that everyone learns differently. Some people are visual learners and that’s where Explain Everything comes in. This tool was created to help you explain a topic or idea in a visually pleasing way. You can create your own videos and animations or choose to import items that have already been created.

The free version of this software has a variety of options for engaging your students, however, the pro edition does add quite a bit of value for the money—be sure to consider both options.


Photo collages are nothing new and PicMonkey has been a fan favorite for this task for years. How does a photo collage help with physical education, though? Here’s an example: A coach takes several photos of a player shooting a basketball. Then, using PicMonkey, he/she lines them up in sequential order to show areas for improvement.

You could also do this with pausing a video, but the still images side by side might be more effective.   You can also save the collage and share it with the player for future reference.

Check out more amazing apps, extensions and websites for teachers at!

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14 Digital Tools Students Will Beg to Use

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