Want to put some new technology in your book reports? Try using video. Perhaps you have seen Scholastic book trailers at In the Stacks. Kids can get a sneak preview of the hottest books in a video trailer- just like the movies. These videos are slick and enticing. They make you want to run to the library or bookstore to read these books. Students can use these techniques to either retell the story or as a book teaser.
Movies without a camcorder
You can also create your own videos to encourage reading. Microsoft has a free product that students can use to create movies without a video camera. Photo Story for Windows is a downloadable, easy to use product. Using digital images, students create a storyboard, add narration, text and music. Royalty free music is included in the free software. The software adds the transitions, including zoom and panning. You can fade to black. Users can also adjust the “camera work” if you don’t like what Photo Story creates.
Dr. Mark Geary has worked with students to create examples of these Photo Story book trailers. These "movies for literacy" are arranged by early elementary, late elementary and adolescent trailers. Complete with a tutorial on how to make it, students can make their own. You can use a few scans from the original book or allow students to use their own photographs. You can use Google Images to find photos that will work. Students can even create their own artwork, scan it, and use the saved digital images. Photo Story is so easy, even an adult can do it.
Other resources for digital storytelling can be found at this Filamentality website.