Publishing Palooza: Gadgets and Gizmos for Magnifying Student Voice Across the Curriculum
Why should students publish?
Nuts & Bolts
Short & Sweet
Bells & Whistles
Above & Beyond
- Wordle is free tool that creates word clouds. The more often a word appears, the larger it will be in the final word cloud.
- Tagxedo is similar to Wordle, but Tagxedo gives the user the opportunity to select the shape in which the word cloud appears.
- Students can also build a Lino to share what they already know on a topic and ideas about what and how they want to learn content. It a place for students to share their thinking and publish it for their peers. Here is the Padlet that we created together: https://padlet.com/jdnramsay/pubpalooza
- Character Trading Cards is available as an app and an online tool. Through this tool, students are guided in analyzing characters, real or fictional, by pulling support from the text. Each category on the card, asks questions that guide learners in creating information-rich cards while employing summarizing strategies. Trading the Cards can be shared with an audience and collections of cards can be built. Here is how my students used the Trading Cards app: An App Stop on Their Learning Journey.
- StoryJumper publishes digital storybooks. My students used it to create their own version Math-terpieces inspired by the work of Greg Tang. Read about our Math-terpieces experience here. Here is an anthology of fables that my learners published collaboratively with a school in Tennessee. A teacher can register a class and students will receive their own log-in information to create their own books. These books are digital, but a hardcopy version is available for purchase. Other similar tools that my students enjoy are MyStorybook and Storybird.
- iBooks Author is an app that gives the user the opportunity to create their own eBook using text, images, and video. iBooks Author has an easy drag and drop feature and an easy format to customize the look of your book. Once completed, using iBooks Author, a book can easily be uploaded to iBookstore for purchase or free download. It can also be shared on iTunes U.
- Some students prefer to publish a hardcover book. Lintor Publishing makes this simple for students by providing templates for their different sized hardcover books and materials. They provide videos so that students can turn their writing into a published hardcover book that they can share with others.
Short & Sweet
- Twitter provides an avenue where every student's voice can be heard and their learning shared regardless of ability level. My students use Twitter in many ways such as Twitter Book Reports and Tweet Stories. Here is a column that I wrote that explains this point: Plugged In: Giving Every Students a Voice with Twitter. Students can join many different conversations. My students joined #6Word for publishing six word memoirs, #ReadIt for their book teaser book reviews, #TweetStory for publishing stories in 140 characters or less and #WhyIWrite for National Day of Writing. Interested in connecting your class with other classes from around the world through Twitter? Join The GlobalClassTwitter wiki. Not sure about how Twitter works? Here's a blog where I explained the basics of Twitter.
- Instagram, like Twitter, connects students with their global peers through photos and videos. Students can collaboratively tell stories with the use of hashtags and Storify. Here is a great piece by Laren Hammonds, Collaborative Storytelling and More with Instagram. Here are a couple of examples of how our school community used it: Snow Stories and Digital Learning Day. Here is how my students used Instagram to connect with their peers and teach them about Innovation Day.
- Voice Thread is a great way for students to have a relevant reason to learn, create, and communicate within a standard. You can create an identity for each student under your account. In order for students to have a unique identity without giving away personal information, they can create avatars on Build Your Wild Self. Here is an example of one that my students created when exploring scientific topics with their global peers. Voice Thread is also available as an app.
Bells & Whistles
- Learners can create digital comic strips using ToonDoo. It includes a library of backgrounds and clipart, but it allows you to upload your own images as well. Once completes, the final ToonDoo can be emailed, downloaded, embedded, or printed. It can be shared via Facebook and Twitter as well. Here are some student examples: Ronnie's Trip, The Big Breakout, The Cardinal
- Comic Book! is an app where students can easily turn photos into comic book pages. A web tool that is similar is Comic Life which requires a download to your computer; it is a free download for 30 days.
- LiveCollage, the sister app to Instagram, gives the user the ability to create collages from multiple photos that have been taken. Text and frames can be added as well. Here is a student-taught lesson that one of my students led which ended with the class creating an LiveCollage. It's available for Apple and Android devices.
- Using Picasa Web Albums, learners can create and collection of images in a slideshow to share with others. Here is a Picasa Web Album that my students created to share our Innovation Day with their peers worldwide and an image loop they created to teach their collaborative writing peers about Alabama Animals during a hands-on activity we had at school. They both can create an anthology of an entire class's work like we did for their Ecosystem Poetry.
- If you would like for your students to look at a story or event from different points of view, then Voki is a tool that can support that type of learning. Voki gives the user the opportunity to create and design an avatar and record their voice speaking. Vokis can be emailed or published/embedded into sites like blogs, websites, and wikis. Teachers can set up Voki Classroom, where the teacher can set up and manage a class of students. There are different price points to set up a Voki Classroom. Here's a piece I wrote about Voki: Speaking of Motivating Students.
- Morfo is a free app that is similar to Voki. Users can create avatars and record their own voice speaking. The major difference is that students can take a photo of themselves, and Morfo guides them in setting the photo to be the one that talks. With Morfo, students become the avatar. The website has several examples that demonstrates how it works. You can see some that my students published for our Innovation Day here.
- In Songify, the user can record their normal speaking voice and then select the beat or sound that they want. Then the app auto-tunes the spoken voice and creates a song for them to share with the world. My students use it as a different way to publish their poetry. Songify is available for free on Apple and Android devices, but additional soundtracks can be purchased for a nominal fee.
- With Puppet Pals students can create puppets and record their voices in a play format. In order to publish and save a final play, you will need to purchase the "director's pass" for $3.99.
- Prezi is a presentation tool that allows you, and your collaborators, to organize and share your ideas. Here are some students examples: The Jackie Robinson Story, Steve Jobs-Innovator, Ancient Greeks
- TripWow is an intuitive tool that leads users through the basic steps of creating a simple travel documentary using the photos, or images, that they have. It guides the user in pinpointing a starting destination and an ending destination. When it is published, it begins with a map that shows the journey and tells how many miles have been travelled. Captions can be added, music selected, and it can easily be shared through social media outlets, emails, or embedded into websites, wikis, or blogs. My students created one for their collaborative writing partners using photos from our trip to Moundville Archaeological Park and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Read more about how TripWow can be used in classrooms: A Wow Way to Support Student Learning and Oh the Places They Can Go: Sharing the Journey to Destinations Unknown.
- iMovie is a user-friendly app that guides the user through publishing their own movie using images or video. Completed projects can be published directly to YouTube, Vimeo, or Facebook. iMovie can also be saved to a camera roll and emailed or sent as a text message. Another alternative is WeVideo, which allows users to make and share videos using WeVideo's cloud-based online video editing software. Available on Android, iPhone, iPad, Mac, PC and Chromebook.
Above & Beyond
- Blogging: Students reflect on their learning and have conversations with peers through blogging. My students use KidBlog to discuss what they are learning and publish their writing for feedback from their peers.
- Wikispaces is a place for students to collect and publish collaboratively. Wikispaces has added an easily manageable private social network to their pages where you and your students can communicate about the writing being published to the wiki. It stretches the classroom time beyond school hours and gives students the opportunity to work collaboratively, leaving one another notes or comments upon their work. You can find examples of the wikis that my students collaboratively created with over 300 other students here: Coast to Coast Chronicles 5th Edition , Coast to Coast Chronicles 6th Edition, Coast to Coast Chronicles 7th Edition, and Coast to Coast Chronicles 10th Edition.
- When students want to create a topic-based webpage, Weebly offers them free webspace that offers a drag and drop interface that is intuitive to use. Here is one that a students create on the Arctic Fox. Students can also create ePortfolios of their writing and publishing projects using Weebly for Education. A teacher can set up an entire class of accounts and them set as private or pubic. This format allows the students to sign in and and post evidence of their learning throughout the school year.