I downloaded The Book Creator last week and it is already one of my favorites for students of all different levels. This app has a $4.99 price tag but it’s definitely worth it! As a Special Education teacher of upper elementary grades, I have several students who are resistant writers. This app has amazing potential to motivate them to write more since the finished product is beautiful, accessible, intuitive, and reflective of their efforts.
Book Creator allows you to import pictures from the iPad or other shared albums and then add as many text boxes as you would like. The app also includes an audio feature so that you can record voices or music. Once you complete your books, you can save them on iBooks or in Dropbox or you can email them to friends for sharing.
I have been using this app with one of my students with intellectual disabilities and what an incredible tool! We took pictures of this student making various emotional faces and then helped her draft a repetition book. She loved being able to record herself reading the pages and willingly practiced and practiced her Frye words and her fluency, without even realizing that she was doing it. She is also happily practicing pronunciation and sentence structure, skills that she would sometimes prefer to ignore! I kept the first copy that she made and we are working on her fluency for a final copy. This way, she has a writing portfolio that I can reference and document her growth. When she creates a fluent final version, we will connect the iPad to our classroom Smartboard and she will be able to share her book with the class. The rest of the students can’t wait to hear her book!
Other students have been using book creator for writing, as well. One student has created a book of his poems. The program is intuitive enough that he has been able to figure out how to import pictures, change and manipulate font, and include recordings. He has been motivated to write and has produced several poems. Because he is repeatedly reading and listening to his poems, he has been authentically revising and editing his work-ah, the power of a published product! Additionally, he is practicing his fluency through the repeated readings, and this is a skill that we have been working on throughout the year.
I really can’t wait to see future projects students will create. Fourth graders are studying ecosystems and I think they could make beautiful iBooks about habitats. Fifth graders can continue to publish poetry anthologies, as well as have additional project options for their studies about the colonies.