Top Pick

Tech That Spurs Critical Thinking

Students love opportunities to sink their teeth into problems that don't have clear answers. It's oftentimes out of this murkiness that new perspectives and ideas emerge. Treat your students to these terrific games, apps, and sites and watch their new perspectives lead to more complex undersandings of the world.

1.
Stick Pick Publisher: Buzz Garwood
Boost engagement, measure higher-order thinking skills with well-done app
Grades Grades 1-12
Type App
Price $2.99
Platforms Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Kindle Fire
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 5
2.
Crayon Physics Deluxe Publisher: Kloonigames
Influential physics game is still a draw
Grades Grades 2-12
Type Game
Price $19.95
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
3.
Minecraft Publisher: Mojang
Spiraling sandbox of adventure and creation gets kids to dig deep
Grades Grades 3-12
Type Game
Price 21.00
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows, Xbox 360
Learning Rating 5
Teacher Rating 3
4.
Geoguessr Publisher: Anton Wallén
"Just one more turn" gameplay jazzes up geography
Grades Grades 4-12
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
5.
Ted-Ed URL: ed.ted.com
Support kids' sense of wonder with outstanding short videos
Grades Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
6.
Scribblenauts Remix Publisher: Warner Bros. Entertainment
Vocab-building word puzzles inspire creative problem solving
Grades Grades 5-8
Type App
Price $.99
Platforms iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Learning Rating 5
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
7.
Sid Meier's Civilization V Publisher: 2K Games
Legendary strategy game is a hit with history buffs in school and out
Grades Grades 6-12
Type Game
Price 49.99
Platforms Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
8.
Youth Radio URL: http://www.youthradio.org
A stellar take on the news from diverse kid journalists
Grades Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
9.
Spent Publisher: McKinney and Urban Ministries of Durham
Provocative, first person look at poverty builds empathy
Grades Grades 7-12
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
10.
Your Commonwealth URL: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org
Engage with passionate international perspectives from youth
Grades Grades 7-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
11.
Youth Voices URL: http://youthvoices.net/
Vibrant online community hosts authentic student writing
Grades Grades 7-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
12.
Historypin URL: http://www.historypin.com
Crowdsourcing is key to making history accessible, approachable
Grades Grades 8-12
Type Website
Price Free
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
13.
Solve the Outbreak Publisher: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Become a disease detective -- read clues, analyze data, save lives
Grades Grades 8-12
Type App
Price Free
Platforms iPad
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
14.
Papers, Please Publisher: 3909
Mature immigration game forces tough ethical choices
Grades Grades 9-12
Type Game
Price $9.99
Platforms Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
15.
The Republia Times Publisher: Lucas Pope
Unassuming editorial sim elegantly exposes the business of bias
Grades Grades 9-12
Type Game
Price Free
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Learning Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3