This week I am hosting some guest bloggers. This is a guest post from Angie Oliversen.
My social media bios declare “I like kids. I like books. I like tech. What else could I be but a school librarian?” That pretty much sums it up right there.
Now, I do want to make one thing clear. I do not believe every book needs a “project.” READ MORE BOOKS. That’s what will encourage a love of reading (and the literacy skills will come). That said there are times when added tech IS fun and helpful to instruction. We had 6 iPads last year but this December were lucky enough to get a cart of 25! Of course we wanted to use them.
The most recent project used Pic Collage for Kids. Fourth graders researched book summaries on bn.com and created posters of books they were excited to read over summer vacation. Posters were then used to promote the books throughout the school. We will repeat the project in the August to recap their summer reading!
Before author Jeff Mack visited recently, many of our kinder and first graders finished the sentence “I can …” and illustrated it. We snapped a quick pic of the drawing, videotaped student authors, and put the two together in Book Creator. Voila! Project to share with parents and the author.
Earlier in the semester we used Chatterpix Kids for a characterization activity from David Gordon’s book Smitten. I snapped two pics of the main characters and put them on all the iPads. The students drew mouths on the characters and recorded themselves as the sock and mitten introducing each other and recounting their adventures.
A fun app for practicing sequencing is Shadow Puppet EDU. Our younger students ordered pics snapped from John Rocco’s Blizzard and recorded themselves retelling the story. Older students used it as a way to show a timeline of events from both fiction and non-fiction selections.
Several classes that were first introduced to the app during a research project discovered Haiku Deck could also be a way to share books they had read. They worked at summarizing the high points of a story, finding the most interesting photos to go along with the important events, and above all never giving away the ending!
Of course either of the Puppet Pal apps (version 1 or version 2) provide opportunities for sharing the love of a book. The free versions have content that can be used for projects but if you can get the full paid versions (1 $3.99 or 2 $5.99) you can do a lot more. Students can add their own illustrations or photos and use the app to animate their retelling.
The LEGO Movie Maker stop motion app takes some patience and at least a few minifigures but it helps the kids practice summarizing and storyboarding. Students can often loan minifigures to a filming cause. Or … the teacher librarian can take a deep breath and share some of her (or his) own.
And last but not least Telestory has fun news templates that can be used for book reviews!