Creating Mobile Apps Inset

Deliver the computing curriculum by creating apps for mobiles with MIT App Inventor.
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If you're looking for exciting ways to deliver the new computing curriculum that your pupils will love, this course is for you.

Pupils have a far deeper relationship with their mobiles than they do with traditional computers, and the prospect of creating their own apps for their phones is a powerful incentive.

The course uses the brilliant App Inventor from MIT (also the birthplace of Scratch). It's a free web-based application that is designed for education and is incredibly well-supported, with tons of free resources and helpful communities. App Inventor is capable of creating sophisticated apps, which can run on Android devices and also be simulated in a web browser, giving the minimum technological barriers to learning.

It has a graphical interface, similar to Scratch, and the more adventurous can also delve into Java, the powerful textual programming language at its core, so it's a great way of fulfilling the curriculum programming requirements.

The course will step you through App Inventor's interface, introduce you to the best of the available free resources, give you ideas for apps and for projects to run with your pupils and familiarise you with the visual and textual programming skills required.

Finally, you'll get to work in small groups and by the end of the day will have created your first app to take away with you.

  • Intro to the mobile app development world
  • Practical experience of mobile app development
  • Addressing the curriculum
  • Discover free resources for designing lessons


This course is designed for teachers of KS3 and 4, but adventurous KS2 teachers are also welcome. No programming knowledge is assumed, though a good base level of ICT skill is required.


The course price includes lunch and refreshments.

Full Course Content

Introduction to mobile phone development (information: general awareness)

  • Mobile Technology: how mobile phones differ from other computers
  • Android: What is Android and why are we focused on it rather than Apple's iOS
  • Starting simple: App Inventor versus full development environment (Java & Eclipse)

App Inventor (knowledge: follow-me practical)

  • Interface: Basic introduction to App Inventor, getting started & overview
  • Exercises: Create a 'Hello World' application

Building an App (experience: follow-instructions practical; experiment: guided try-it-yourself)

  • App Design: Hello Purr, display a photo and introduce interactivity. Simple wireframing activity
  • Basic UI: Develop a layout to display an image within the application and add an action trigger
  • Programming: Build algorithm into the application triggered by UI action trigger
  • Discuss possible enhancements and offer a shortlist of extensions
  • Extend basic app to do more (from the shortlist)


  • Communities
  • Teaching frameworks
  • Cool projects