Monday, June 1, 2015

Book Creator - The Swiss Army Knife of Apps

Book Creator is am amazing app. It is incredibly versatile much as the famed Swiss Army Knife. You can use Book Creator to create a single student story, a collaborative book, a reflective journal, a science notebook and so much more. Book Creator plays well with others so it is a snap to insert voice, music, drawings (we love Doodle Buddy for this), photos, video, Explain Everything, text, Tellagami and other animations to make your book come to life. Best of all, you can upload the Book to the iBooks store or share as a movie.

Here's an example of a Mother's Day class book. Each student took a photo of his or her best handwritten Mother's Day Poem, a photo of themselves, an audio recording reading the poem, a Doodle Buddy portrait of mother and child and a recording of a heartfelt message to mom. Simple to pull in those two pages from each student and a true treasure for any mother. It captures the student's handwriting, message, art work and a lovely photo of the child. I have a dozen large red boxes filled with my children's construction paper projects, art work, etc. but I would kill to go back in time and capture their voice and thoughts about the project at that time. Book Creator makes this process easy. 

Which brings me to my next favorite use, a reflective journal. We use Book Creator as our ePortfolio from PreK through 2nd grade. Our students have always used their portfolios at the end of the year student led parent conference but it's difficult for the little ones to remember why a certain project meant so much or what they learned from it. We still maintain all of their work done by hand but now we put it into a continual Book Creator book and record their reflection at that time. All of these projects get loaded into their ePortfolio Google Site which follows them through 12th grade. What an amazing documentation of their learning over time! 

We've also had teachers use Book Creator for nonfiction reports like our State Fair books in 3rd grade. Students love that there is no creative ceiling. They can insert license free images from the web, their own art work, all of their proofed text and then add clever placement, voice recordings, state songs and video to make their books come alive. So very different from our old big poster project. 

We love that Book Creator lets us "app smash" with our other core apps such as Explain Everything, Doodle Buddy and iMovie. Out students love using Book Creator during their free time as well. Just the other day, two boys brought in their some of their toy figures including Darth Vadar, Batman and several variations of GI Joe. They used Stop Motion Animation and created a book from a spur of the moment story imagining how their toys would interact with each other.

Give Book Creator a try today. It works for any curricular area, any grade level. You are only limited by your imagination as this app IS the Swiss Army Knife app. 

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