The iPad app Book Creator is one of the App Review Committee’s Recommended apps, in part for its versatility in creating books. Students as young as kindergarteners for the most part find it intuitive to make a book. Within the app, users just press the plus sign to add photos, writing/drawing, text, or sound to their book. Students can easily use the app to share their learning. Final projects can be exported as an ePub, a PDF (no audio then), or a video (with automatic “page” turning).
However, Book Creator is also a great app to use with other apps to make even more engaging or just snazzier ebooks! Here are a few combinations you might want to try with your students:
Explain Everything is an interactive whiteboard/screencasting app. Like Book Creator, it is simple enough that young learners can create products with relative ease but complex enough to be appropriate for all grade levels. It has a few capabilities that Book Creator does not, including recording while drawing/writing, and panning and zooming. Teachers and students might export books they’ve created in Book Creator to Explain Everything to read with the pointer and record their voice, highlight, and/or annotate. Or, they might use the pan and zoom feature in Explain Everything to add some pizzazz to a PDF of their Book Creator books, especially if they created a comic book. Another app-smashing option is to take a whole class’ projects or responses from Explain Everything and put them together in one Book Creator book.
The iMovie app provides a simple way to make a movie on the iPad with some nice editing options. A common way to use iMovie and Book Creator together is to edit some video before bringing it into Book Creator. For example, students can use the trailer style of iMovie to create a brief, engaging video about a person they are writing a biography on, or a book trailer they are writing a book response to. This could be used in all subject areas, from showing science experiments to proper form in PE as a way to assess students. Checkout this Youtube video from David Panush that includes examples of using these two apps to assess students on their understanding of health and safety rules. Additionally, you could start with Book Creator and export the book as a video file into iMovie to add music and other editing from iMovie.
Speaking of creating fun movies, another great app to combine with Book Creator would be DoInk Green Screen. The green screen app allows students to record themselves and others and put whatever background they want behind them based on what they are learning about: weather, a historical event, a newsroom, animals and habitats, jobs, locations around the world, a math worksheet…the sky is the limit! Those videos can then easily be imported into a student, small group, or class ebook in Book Creator.
While it is possible to use colors beyond the 12 standard colors in Book Creator, my young students have had difficulty creating a brown color (which makes both books about seeds and Martin Luther King Jr. a bit difficult). Why not completely unleash their creativity and let them start by creating drawings in Drawing Pad , which has a wide variety of colors and tools including paint, chalk, crayons, stickers, markers, and pencils. After saving to the photos, these can be easily brought into Book Creator.
Once the creative juices start flowing, it is easy to think of dozens of apps that could be used in conjunction with Book Creator, so I’ll list just a few more:
- Tellagami – create and share a quick animated Gami video with a talking avatar
- Chatterpix Kids – make a photo of anything talk in a short video – just draw a line for the mouth
- Stop Motion Studio – create stop motion movies
- Shadow Puppet Edu – easily create videos with copyright friendly videos and voice over
- Toontastic, PuppetPals – create animated stories with characters and settings
- Keynote – create presentations
- Popplet, Kidspiration, or Inspiration – make mind-maps
- Numbers – add tables and charts
- WordFoto – turn words into typographic works of art