Book Creator Ideas for Classroom Usage

I was introduced to book creator by a fellow teacher at our sister school in Hillingdon.  Sue Wakefield-Gray gave me a bit of an intro and showed me how her grade three teachers were using it to create book logs with an audio recording of the students thoughts on the books that they had read.

I immediately saw the possibilities.  Below you will find some of the ideas I have thought of for using Book Creator in the classroom.
Electronic Portfolios
Instead of students hand writing reflections for portfolios they could record or video themselves reflecting on their work. The could include all subject areas in their book very easily.  Especially subjects like art and music which are hard to show in 2D. No more having a 2D image of an object, now they could have a video of it.  They could also have video/photos/audio of all of the steps of the process leading to the final piece of work.  This same technique could be done in drama, PE, modern languages, etc. This could be a great way to create videos for their portfolios that are a quick look into the whole process involved not just the final product. 
Reference Books
Use Book Creator to create an ongoing reference book.  For example in grade one the students begin a book that shows key math concepts learned in grade one.  It might have a shapes chapter with pictures of shapes and text explaining in their words the characteristics of that shape.  It might have a short video clip of the child explaining how to do certain types of math problems.  Then the following year the child would take this book with them to 2nd grade.  They would be able to add to it or make changes. The book would then continue with that child as they grow giving them a resource guide that was create by and for them.  They could have a language, science, social studies, IT, art, music well any subject area really.  Imagine the resource they could create in their own words.
Reading Reflective Journal
Our librarian Suzanne McCluskey is using Book Creator this year for grades four and five to keep a reflective journal for the books that they read for the Battle of the Books.  She created a guideline for the elements that the student’s books must have, but the format and the layout are being left to the students.  This could be done with classroom reading as well. 
Non-fiction Book
Our grade two classrooms this year are going to use Book Creator to create a non-fiction book about simple machines.  Last year this was a paper book.  This year it will be an interactive guide.  They will be required to include certain non-fiction elements that they learned about in library when making their books.
Students could use Book Creator as a way to create their own picture dictionary of the words that they want/need to know for school.  The teachers and their classmates could help by pronouncing the words for them to make the book more interactive.  Also their parents could get involved by helping with translation and pronunciation of the native language parts of the dictionary.

The could develop this further by including phrases and sayings.  Their teacher could add a few key saying and words that they use frequently to help the student understand what is happening in the classroom.  Then if they seem to be lost the teacher can find the page with the direction on it and the student can listen to it in their native language.  
Book Creator could replace the paper reflective journal.  The students could record video, audio or type their exhibition reflections.  This would mean that their journal could be shared with a wider audience as it could be emailed once published.  Wouldn’t grandparents be happy!
Go paperless get rid of the paper notebooks to take notes in class.  Create a book instead.  Have one photocopy of a resource that the kids take a picture of and put into their eBook instead of gluing into a notebook.  All of the things that can be done in a paper notebook can be recreated in book creator.  Drawings, graphs and writing can be photocopied or screen captured from another app.  The possibilities are endless! This also makes it easier for a student to refer to this notebook in the future as they will not have a physical notebook to keep track of at the end of the year or over a move.
In grade five at our school we use a notebook to keep our written homework in.  This process could be converted into an eBook. 
Traveling Mascot
Several of our classrooms have a traveling stuffed animal. With Book Creator the journal that travels with the stuffed animal could be come more interactive.  It would also be easier to store and keep from year to year. 
The only limitation to book creator being used for some of these ideas is that there is limited space on an iPad. May of these ideas would end up being quite big in the end with all the video and audio.  Ideally we would have a way to add pages to a “published” copy instead of republishing the whole thing.

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Categories: EAL

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