App review: My Story - Book Maker for Kids (iOS)

By Sherri Fricker

About the App

My Story Book IconMy Story - Book Maker for Kids is an excellent open-ended eBook making app.  This app encourages kids of all ages to become published eBook authors using drawing tools, photographs, audio recordings, and text. Young authors can illustrate their stories using up to 20 colours and a variety of brush styles (pen, brush, wacky) and sizes. Book makers may prefer to have photographs instead of illustrations.  You can take pictures right in the app or choose pictures from the camera roll.  Photographs and the drawing tools can be combined to create labeled or annotated pictures. Users can tell their stories using the typing tool, the audio recorder, or both. The typing tool is featured on the secondary toolbar.  The typing tool features spell check and auto-correct.  Typed words appear below the pictures when books have been published.  Students may also choose to record themselves reading the text or providing additional information about the page.  Audio recordings can be recorded and re-recorded as often as needed and played back at any time during the reading of the book.  The audio recording feature gives students who struggle with writing the opportunity to express themselves more easily. My Story eBooks can be easily shared via email and even uploaded into iBooks.  If your iPad does not have the mail app enabled, choose Copy Book Link.  A link to access the eBook will be added to the clipboard.  The link can then be pasted into Notes and copied down by hand, pasted into an iPad Word Processor and uploaded to DropBox or Google Drive, or pasted into a third party eMail app (like the Gmail app).  

Classroom Integration

Students can choose their own story writing adventure as they decide what to work on first⎯ pictures, text, problem, solution, introduction, etc.  Model how to take ideas from a graphic organizer or story planner to create their My Story eBook.  Consider having students create a storyboard for their story first, outlining major events and then filling in the details. Students can see their storyboards by clicking on the pages icon to see thumbnails of all the pages they have created so far.   Or try providing students with one or more pictures and have the students write the accompanying story. My Story - Book Maker is not just for fiction. This app makes an excellent interactive science journal.  Have students use the app to take regular pictures of science experiments, plant growth, insect metamorphosis, cloud formations, etc.  Students can then use a combination of the audio and text tool to record their observations and may even use the drawing tools to highlight changes.  Encourage students to record predictions and hypotheses with every journal entry. My Story - Book Maker might be the answer for recording highlights of field trips, special classroom events, retellings of familiar stories, personal or fictional character timelines, etc.  The possibilities are limited only by your imagination.

Special Considerations

My Story book screenshotMy Story - Book Maker is a multilingual app which offers support for English, Chinese, French, Japanese, Spanish, and Swedish.  When the iPad’s system language is set to one of those six languages, the instructions and the spell check feature within the app will default to the chosen language. Platform: iPad (iOS 5.1 or newer), iPad 2 or newer is recommended for using the camera feature

My Story - Book Maker for Kids - HiDef Web Solutions