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Tagged With: digital storytelling

11 Webtools That Make Images Talk

Not only does image annotation combine the best of text and pictures, but kids love it. Adding their own thoughts to a picture or even better, having the picture talk, inspires them to a creative level that’s difficult to achieve with most other communication tools. With the breadth of tech tools available, this is not only easy to accomplish but fits most school budgets.

Here are eleven of my favorite image annotation tools. I think you’ll find many that suit your purposes.

ChatterPix

iOS

Created by Duck Duck Moose, in this popular free app, students take a photo, draw a line on it to make a mouth, and record their voice. Then, the photo ‘talks’ the recording through the mouth. Add a border, decorations, and text, then share with friends as an MP4 video via email or YouTube.

This is a great tool for quick digital stories, academic feedback, or a get-to-know-you activity for the start of school.

[video width="299" height="299" mp4="http://askatechteacher.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/ChatterPix-Video.mp4"][/video]

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Categories: Images, Multimedia, Writing | Tags: | Leave a comment

10 Tips for Digital Storytelling You Don’t Want to Miss

digital storytellingHere are eight of the top Digital Storytelling articles according to Ask a Tech Teacher readers:

  1. 9 Best-in-Class Digital Storytelling Tools
  2. Storyboard That–Digital Storyteller, Graphic Organizer, and more
  3. Digital Storytelling Apps
  4. Digital Storytelling Websites
  5. Common Core Writing–Digital Quick Writes
  6. 42 Great Story Websites You’ll Love
  7. Monday Freebies #28: My Storybook
  8. Weekend Website #29: Storybook Maker

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Categories: Tech tips, Writing | Tags: | Leave a comment

9 Best-in-Class Digital Storytelling Tools

parents and technologyA digital story is a series of images connected with text and/or a narrated soundtrack — captured by a digital device such as an iPad or smartphone — that tell a story. It can be fiction, non-fiction, narrative, biographic, expository, or even poetry. Think of Ken Burns’ The Civil War, or Colin Low’s City of Gold. Because of its multimedia approach and appealing blend of text, color, movement, sound, and images, it has fast become one of the most popular writing exercises in schools.

According to Center for Digital Storytelling, there are seven elements critical to a good digital story:

  1. Point of View — What is the perspective of the author?
  2. Dramatic Question — A key question that keeps the viewer’s attention and will be answered by the end of the story.
  3. Emotional Content — Serious issues that come alive in a personal and powerful way and connects the audience to the story.
  4. Voice — personalize the story with the author’s unique writing style to help the audience understand the context.
  5. Soundtrack — Music or other sounds that support and embellish the story.
  6. Economy — Using just enough content to tell the story without overloading the viewer.
  7. Pacing — The rhythm of the story and how slowly or quickly it progresses.

These elements are the goal and may not be included in the first digital story written by a kindergartner, but by middle school, using the vast swath of multimedia tools available in digital storytelling, students will have no problem including all elements.

Writing a digital story includes five basic steps:

  1. Research the topic so you are clear on presentation.
  2. Write a script, a storyboard, or a timeline of activities.
  3. Collect the required multimedia parts — text, images, audio, video, oral selfies, and more.
  4. Combine everything into an exciting story.
  5. Share and reflect on the completed story.

These five steps are stepping stones for beginners and critical to experienced storytellers.

There are so many online options for digital storytelling, rarely is there a student who can’t find a webtool that fits their communication style. Here are nine of the most popular. Try them all and then let students pick the one that works best for them:

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Categories: Multimedia, Reviews, Writing | Tags: , | 5 Comments

Storyboard That–Digital Storyteller, Graphic Organizer, and more

storyboard thatStoryboard That is a leader among online digital storytelling tools thanks to its comic-based themes, clean layout, vast collection of story pieces, varied strip options, and intuitive drag-and-drop interface. Students can map out ideas, write stories, or relay events in a comic format using Storyboard That’s huge library of backgrounds, characters, text boxes, shapes, and images.  When you sign up as a teacher, you get a dashboard to manage students and support for Google sign-in. You also get teacher guides and lesson plans on subjects like English (Of Mice and Men), school social skills (like bullying), World History, US History, Special Education, and languages (like Teaching Spanish). Lesson plans include how-to steps, Common Core alignment, sample storyboard layouts, synopsis, and Essential Questions. 

Here’s how it works: Log into your account from any device (laptop, desktop–Mac or Windows–Chromebook, iPad, or even a smartphone) and Storyboard That automatically adapts to your device using its HTML5 responsive web design. Students can join with an access key supplied by the teacher–no email required–or be bulk-added by the administrator. Select the frame layout you’d like with any number of scenes, then add a background, characters, one or more props, and speech bubbles from Storyboard That’s image banks (of over 325 characters, 225 scenes, and over 45,000 images). Each element can be resized, rotated, and repositioned. Characters can be posed with flexibility at all joints, and adjusted for appearance and emotion. You can even upload images to use in the strip, add photos from the millions available through Photos for Class (including citations), and record a voice overlay (premium only) to narrate the story. Once finished, storyboards can be saved as PDFs, storyboard cells, PowerPoint presentations, and/or emailed out.

Beyond the traditional strip layout, Storyboard That offers graphic organizers such as a T-chart, a Grid, a Frayer Model, a Spider Map and a Timeline (premium and education account).This is great for visual learners who thrive on color and images.

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Categories: Writing | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

42 Great Story Websites You’ll Love

1282775_princeCheck out our latest addition of great websites–Stories. There are 45 websites for grades K-5, everything from audio to international to write your own. Enjoy!

  1. Aesop Fables—no ads
  2. Aesop Fairy Tales
  3. Aesop’s Fables
  4. Childhood Stories
  5. Classic Fairy Tales
  6. Comic Creator
  7. Edutainment games and stories
  8. Fables and Fairy Tales
  9. Fables–Aesop, beautiful
  10. Fables–Aesop, nicely done
  11. Fairy tales
  12. Fairy Tales and Fables
  13. Get Writing—write your own story
  14. Interactive storybook collection
  15. Ivy Joy Fables
  16. Listen/read–Free non-fic audio books
  17. Magic Keys–stories for different ages
  18. Make a Story
  19. Make another story
  20. Make Believe Comix (more…)
Categories: Reading, Teacher resources, Websites | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Great Websites–Stories

Check out our latest addition of great websites–Stories. There are 45 websites for grades K-5, everything from audio to international to write your own. Enjoy!1282775_prince

Categories: 1st, 2nd, 3rd Grade, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, Reading, Websites | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Monday Freebies #28: My Storybook

This year more than any before, classroom budgets have been cut making it more difficult than ever to equip the education of our children with quality teaching materials. I understand that. I teach K-8. Because of that, I’ve decided to give the lesson plans my publisher sells in the Technology Toolkit (110 Lesson Plans that I use in my classroom to integrate technology into core units of inquiry while insuring a fun, age-appropriate, developmentally-appropriate experience for students) for FREE. To be sure you don’t miss any of these:

…and start each week off with a fully-adaptable K-8 lesson that includes step-by-step directions as well as relevant ISTE national standards, tie-ins, extensions, troubleshooting and more. Eventually, you’ll get the entire Technology Toolkit book. If you can’t wait, you can purchase the curriculum here.

I love giving my material away for free. Thankfully, I have a publisher who supports that. If everyone did, we would reach true equity in international education.

My Storybook

Create a ten-sentence story, using characters, setting, plot, rising action, climax and resolution. One sentence per page with a picture to communicate the idea. Include a cover, About the Author. Use this lesson to teach students how to use Publisher’s design gallery

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Categories: Freebies/Discounts, Lesson plans, Writing | Tags: | Leave a comment

Monday Freebies #25: Intro to PowerPoint–with KidPix Pictures

Drawings are done in KidPix. Assign topics (me, my family, etc) for grades K-1 to reinforce the concept of following directions. With 2nd grade, use one picture for each of the parts of a story—characters, plot, setting, climax/resolution.  Mix pictures and text. Students can show these to parents at Open House or a parent night using Windows slideshow function (something they can do without assistance after a bit of practice)

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Categories: 1st, 2nd, Kindergarten, Lesson plans, Slideshows | Tags: | Leave a comment

Weekend Website #51: 17 Story Sites for First and Second Grade

This is my list of websites students can use when we’re studying story-telling, fables and myths. This list includes sites

[caption id="attachment_4872" align="alignright" width="222" caption="Create a story"]create a story[/caption]

where students can read stories, have stories read to them and create their own. I pick 3-4, post them on our internet start page for a week or two, and then change the list. If you click that link, it takes you to kindergarten. You can select the red first grade tab or the blue second grade for more choices. If you don’t see any there, it’s because we’re not discussing stories right now.

See which work best for your students:

  1. Aesop’s Fables
  2. Aesop Fables—no ads
  3. Bad guy Patrol
  4. Childhood Stories
  5. Classic Fairy Tales
  6. Fairy Tales and Fables
  7. Make Your Story (more…)
Categories: 1st, 2nd, Language arts, Reading, Web Tools, Websites | Tags: , | Leave a comment

#28: My Storybook

Create a ten-sentence story, using characters, setting, plot, rising action, climax and resolution. One sentence per page with a picture to communicate the idea. Include a cover, About the Author. Use this lesson to teach students how to use Publisher’s design gallery

Click on lessons for a full size alternative. (more…)

Categories: 2nd, 3rd Grade, Language arts, Lesson plans, Websites, Writing | Tags: | Leave a comment