21 Things – My Summer Vacation (Imaged Based Story Project)

Many different tools are available to help students explain their learning and processes. One possiblity is to use apps that allow you to insert images and record voice to create a video. Native to the iPad is iMovie, which I have used with a student to create a short video story. The student had created a man, dog, and ball out of playdoh. With the camera, we took still photography of the man playing fetch with his dog. We added the pictures to iMovie and narrated the story. He was able to show the movie to his class. 

Two other apps that can be used for creating image-based videos are Videolicious and Shadow Puppet. Both apps free.  Shadow Puppet Edu has all of the features unlocked for classroom use. You can insert up to 100 items and record up to 30 minutes. The free version of Videolicious allows for one minute of recording and ten images. Both apps allow you to include video. Shadow Puppet provides acess to images and maps. Many of the images can be added to your project. For the ease of use and access to many images I chose to use Shadow Puppet to create my story.

I would suggest students write their story first, then search for images. However, I looked through my available pictures and decided what story I would write. Since we had just taken a family vacation, I chose to use pictures my family or I had taken. I supplemented the story with images from the galleries available in Shadow Puppet. Any images not taken by family were found in the photo gallery of Shadow Puppet and used through a Creative Commons 2.0 license. They were all made available through Photosforclass.com. Not all the added images were of the areas we visited, but they met the purpose of documenting my summer vacation. 

Here is my script for the video:


Image of My Summer Vacation- my Google Doc

The Shadow Puppet app was easy to use. I allowed access to my photos, selected the pictures, chose the images I would use to complete my story, and selected music. I liked that I could choose from my iTunes Library or their eight different music styles. I chose the Americana style as the story was about a road trip to the heartland of the Midwest. After organizing the images and selecting the music, I recorded the narration. In two takes I had a story about my summer vacation. Watch it here:

Teachers can use Shadow Puppet or similar apps to create short videos explaing classroom processes, exploring moments in history or exploring the great axpanses of the sky and sea. Through pictures or video the teachers can create classroom videos showing school or classroom rules. They may want to create a short series  of videos students can review in center to study math concepts or letter sounds.Similarly, students could create short videos introductions, place a new twist on the summer vacation paper by documenting it with a video, and develop videos telling news about events in the school. These are just a few of the ideas for including image based projects in the classroom learning process. 

I believe image based digital stories provide a better opportunity for the student to show their learning by requiring students to select appropriate pictures for use. They could be required to document their own stories by providing students with a camera or device. Image based projects help students document learning while teaching digital citizenship. They can learn about using and documenting other sources, whereas, animated digital stories do not provide the opportunity to learn about documenting sources. Additionally, image based projects provide students the chance to learn aspects of photojournalism while documenting their learning.

Share the ways in which you have used image based story projects in your class or school in the comments. Or if you have ideas about how teachers could use image based project please share, too. You may email your ideas or comments to me at marc@marcdaly.com. I look forward to learning more about image based story projects and utilizing them to help students enhance their learning.