5 Tools Students Can Use to Create Alternative Book Reports

This afternoon someone emailed me asking for some suggestions for tools for creating book trailer videos. It has been two years since I last wrote about the topic so I created a new list of tools for creating book trailers. Book trailers are short videos designed to spark a viewer’s interest in a book. Having students create book trailers is an excellent alternative to traditional book report projects. A great place to find examples of book trailers is Book Trailers for Readers.

Animoto makes it possible to quickly
create a video using still images, music, video clips, and text. If you
can make a slideshow presentation, you can make a video using Animoto. Animoto’s free service limits you to 30 second videos. You can create longer videos if you apply for an education account.

WeVideo is a collaborative online
video creation tool. In the video editor you can upload your own media
clips or use stock media clips to produce your video. The video editor
provides tools for trimming the length of display and or sound of each
element you add to your video project. What makes WeVideo collaborative
is that you can invite other people to create and edit with you. The WeVideo Google Drive app allows
you to save all of your video projects in your Google Drive account.
WeVideo also offers an Android app that students can use to capture
images and video footage to add to their projects.

Pixntell is an iPad
app for quickly creating simple narrated photostories. To create a story
using Pixntell all that you need to do is start a new project, select
some images, place them in order, and then start talking about each of
your pictures. You control the timing for each image. If you want to
talk about your first picture for twenty seconds, your second picture
for just three seconds, and your third picture for fifteen seconds, you
can do that. When your project is complete you can upload it directly to
YouTube, share it on Facebook, or send to friends via email.

Narrable is a neat service for creating short narrated slideshows. To create an audio slideshow on Narrable
start by uploading some pictures that you either want to talk about or
have music played behind. After the pictures are uploaded you can record
a narration for each picture through your computer’s microphone or by
calling into your Narrable’s access phone number. You can also upload an
audio recording that is stored on your computer. Narrable projects can
be shared via email, Facebook, or by embedding them into a blog.

Wideo is a service that allows anyone to create animated videos and Common Craft-style
videos online. You can create an animated video on Wideo by dragging
and dropping elements into place in the Wideo editor then setting the
sequence of animations. Each element can be re-used as many times as you
like and the timing of the animation of each image can individually
adjusted. Wideo’s stock elements include text, cartoons, and drawings.
You can also upload your own images to use in your videos. Wideo could be used by students to animate the highlights of a book that they’ve read.


Thank You Readers for 14 Amazing Years!