A few weeks ago, we published the first in a series of Top Websites for Teaching and Learning, as compiled by The American Association of School Librarians (AASL). The AASL makes their yearly selections to honor those internet sites that provide “enhanced learning and curriculum development for school librarians and their teacher collaborators”.
This week we’ll explore some of the digital storytelling websites available for teachers and students alike. Digital storytelling provides an exciting way for students and teachers to share their knowledge. It may include a combination of video, animation, sound, still images – any type of digital media that can be used to present an idea or tell a story.
Below is an overview of the top Digital Storytelling websites selected by the AASL in 2015 along with a few additions of our own!
1. Booktrack Classroom (AASL top pick)
Booktrack Classroom allows students to create and publish eBooks with movie-style soundtracks, or they may create their own soundtrack for any story. Readings of stories, poems, essays and more will be enhanced with the addition of sound and music. Benefits of this method include increased student comprehension, information retention, student engagement, and overall enjoyment! Booktrack Classroom also maintains a free library of books with engaging soundtracks for student and teacher use. https://www.booktrackclassroom.com/content/intro
Metta is an amazing storytelling site for creating visually appealing mixed media stories. Using this tool, learners can make quick movies using videos, text, pictures, and sounds. With the Metta tool, you can also embed polls and quizzes, collect statistics and see how each student has performed overall. You can easily set up your flipped or blended courses by adding groups and assigning video lessons. http://www.metta.io/
3. My Storybook (AASL top pick)
Make children’s storybooks online for free! Get your book published, share with friends and family, and read stories from the free online children’s book library. My Storybook makes it easy for students to create their own books. They begin with a writing lesson and learn how to create their book step by step. The addition of characters, pictures, and drawings helps bring the story to life. Students are then offered the opportunity to save their work in a high quality, printable eBook or share their story online with others. https://www.mystorybook.com/
4. Recite This
This website makes it easy for you to take a favorite quote, and create a graphic to go along with it. Users simply enter the quote they want and a slew of poster options are shown. Select the one that fits your need and your mood. Post it right to social media, email it, download it – you have plenty of options! Best of all? The website is free to use! http://www.recitethis.com/
5. Storyboard That (AASL top pick)
With an extensive image library, flexible layouts and featuring an image resource library, Storyboard That makes it easy to create storyboards! According to the website, those that register for the Individual Edition can create two storyboards a week for free, or upgrade any time for more advanced features. Storyboard That also offers specialized accounts for teachers or businesses. http://www.storyboardthat.com/
While technically not a storyboard tool, FlipQuiz provides an easy way to share information and create simple review activities for the end of a lesson. FlipQuiz allows you to create your own game show style boards to test comprehension. With FlipQuiz, questions are displayed on-screen and can be saved for later use. http://flipquiz.me/
At Ed4Career, we love to stay up-to-date on the latest in education and share that information with you! We hope that those interested in integrating digital storytelling into educational activities will find these resources useful. We’d love to hear about your favorite digital storytelling websites! Please feel free to leave a note in the comments section below.