Top Apps for Your Student Performance Trip (Part 1)
This is the first in a three-part series highlighting the best apps for student performance travel. Read part two.
Mobile apps for your smartphone or tablet can be extremely useful both for planning and executing a trip. For the first of our three-part monthly series, we present our 6 top apps to help with planning, organizing, and communicating, both before and during a trip.
One of the easiest ways to communicate with your group is though a blog, where you can quickly and easily post news and updates about your student performance trip, without the need for frequent paper handouts in class. Parents and students can easily be informed about initial trip options, payment deadlines, pre-trip meetings, and itinerary changes or updates. We recommend using WordPress, just like we do. WordPress powers an amazing 23% of the internet. You can add and edit blog posts from a computer, or from their mobile app while on the go. A free account should be more than enough to keep both your students and parents informed about your upcoming travels.
Assuming a majority of your students and parents have Google accounts (which is fairly likely), consider setting up a Google calendar to share amongst the group. You can include pre trip deadlines (such as payment dates) and the trip itinerary. Best of all, students can easily sync the calendar to their smartphone and receive notifications for payment deadlines and trip events. They also don’t need to worry about losing the printed itinerary while on the trip.
Having the ability to reach your students while they are enjoying an amusement park or new city can make keeping track of your group and, sending them updates, much easier. GroupMe (built by the experts at Skype) allows you to send one message and reach everyone in your group. Participants can receive the messages through the smartphone app, or via standard text message on non-smartphones, ensuring that all of your students can stay in the loop. (See our previous post from more tips on keeping track of your group.)
Eliminate the need to bring stacks of paper with you on your student performance trip. The GoodReader app allows you to take PDF documents with you on your phone or tablet, creating a central location to keep copies of medical information, health insurance cards, passports, and other important forms and documents. You can easily share all of the files with chaperones in the group so that everyone has the necessary forms and papers, no matter where they may be. The app also syncs with other programs like DropBox (so you can easily add new documents and keep them up to date), and allows you to mark up or add notes to a PDF from your device.
Worried that someone will leave their sheet music in the hotel, on the bus, or back at home? ForScore can come to the rescue. This handy app for iPad allows you to store all of your sheet music in one place. All you have to do is set it on the music stand and swipe to change pages. You can even use an iPad instead of a heavy conductor’s score, cutting down on the amount of paper you need to carry around the world.
Looking for one app that can take care of everything? Look no further than Band. This app combines a group calendar, photo and file sharing, a group discussion board, and group messaging all in one. An additional feature is group polling, allowing you to quickly and easily collect details such as T-Shirt sizes or food preferences. Furthermore, it is available for iOS, Android, and in a web browser, so all of your students have the ability to access it. Best of all, it’s completely free!
Utilizing these apps is one way to make the communication and planning of your trip more seamless. Be sure to share any similar apps you have used in the comments, and if you have any questions, feel free to contact us. Watch for our second post in this series, focused on apps for international travel, next month.
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