The 10 Best iPhone and iPad Apps for Art Teachers 2010

Since publishing our 30 Best iPhone Apps for Art Teachers last year (August 2009), we have discovered many new apps that are worthy of being added to our best list. Covering a wide range of interests and uses, below are the Teaching Palette’s 10 Best iPhone, iPad and iPod Apps for Art Teachers 2010 – the latest and greatest apps for art teachers and their students. Consider this an amendment to last year’s list.

Apps for Student and Teacher Use

Animalia Based on the beautiful illustrations from the classic book by the same name, this app brings “eye spy” to a whole new level.  Explore various artwork by hunting for hidden items.

Accudraw Update your traditional grid drawing system with technology.  Photograph an object or use one from your library and overlay with a grid to create precision drawings.

Faces iMake Appropriate for younger students, this app uses a creative mix of collage materials inspired by author and artist Hanoch Pivin. Upgrade to the premium version for additional features. See our full review of Faces iMake here.

KidsOrigami Beautiful images illustrate simple origami folding techniques for kids.  Just click on a paper crane, frog, etc. and follow the step by step instructions. Great for the analytical thinkers in your classroom. Recommended for late elementary and up.

Sketchn’ Guess Lite Available only on the iPad this app capitalizes on the larger screen size for game play. Players divide into two teams and try to gain the most points by guessing their team’s themes the fastest.  Features include a timer, score sheet, “Sketchn’ Guess” cards and several colored pencil choices for sketching in an easy to navigate format that allows for self directed play. Recommended for late elementary students and up.

fotobabble Great for an art critique or personal reflection, this simple app allows you to record and attach audio to a photo. Saved content can be posted publicly or privately accessible on the fotobabble website.

Art & Music If you enjoy integrating music into your curriculum, this is the app for you.  This app matches up music and art from corresponding time periods, ranging from Russian to the Classical West. (not iPad compatible)

Apps for Art History

MoMA AB EX NY Experience 200 Abstract Expressionist paintings all housed by the MOMA. Beautiful images of art that can be enlarged and displayed with additional information. The iPad app includes a selection of videos featuring comments by the curators, artist painting techniques  and art terms in action. My favorite video is The Painting Techniques of Jackson Pollack: One: November 31, 1950. There is also an interactive map and Art Terms glossary.

SmartHistory The closest you can get to Italy from home, this app gives an amazing virtual art history tour through Rome using various multimedia including video and google map locations.

French Impressionism Showcasing artwork from the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago, this app is perfect for Impressionism lovers. View detailed video descriptions, gallery views, and biographies including Monet, Seurat, Ceznne, along with many others.

Honorable Mention

ArtPuzzle HD (iPad) / ArtPuzzle Lite ArtPuzzle HD is set in an art gallery that you virtually walk through and unscramble over 70 famous art masterpieces. The iPad app features classical music, four levels of difficulty, information about each painting and the ability to save the image to your photo gallery. ArtPuzzle Lite is compatible with iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch and offers many of the same features but, also has a quiz feature.

Art Start Created by an art teacher from Seattle, this idea generator can spark creativity in your students. Simply pressing the start button produces ideas for media, prompt, and color.

Learn about many other great apps reviewed for education though IEAR.

Hillary Andrlik + Theresa McGee

The founders and primary authors of this blog are Hillary Andrlik and Theresa McGee, who both teach elementary art in the Chicagoland area. Hillary has been teaching art since 2002, received her art education degree from Illinois State University and masters from National Louis University. Theresa has been teaching since 1997 and received her bachelors degree from Northern Illinois University and masters from Benedictine University. In 2008, Theresa became a National Board Certified Teacher. Both Hillary and Theresa have earned the honor of being Illinois Elementary Art Educator of the Year. Together, Hillary and Theresa have presented at Illinois Art Education Association Conference on topics ranging from classroom management to technology and each have presented on numerous other occasions for other organizations.


  • December 14, 2010

    Cindy Walker

    Do you know if the apps are available in Android format?

  • January 6, 2011

    Chris Alexander

    Hi Cindy,

    The Art Institute app for impressionism is available on Android and we will be submitting the SmartHistory Rome application very soon.

    Chris Alexander
    Program Director

  • January 19, 2011

    chemistry equipment Pete

    Thanks for the app recomendations, im getting Kids Origami right now

  • September 6, 2011

    Colin Hall

    Very cool. Anything that furthers the creation of art can’t be a bad thing.

    All the best

    Col :-)

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