Home » Books »Featured Carousel »iPad » Currently Reading:

Finally! A Book Creator App

September 15, 2011 Books, Featured Carousel, iPad 7 Comments

I was thrilled last school year when our First Graders created their own Read Along Audiobook for the iPad. My regret was that while it was created TO BE READ on the iPad, it was not CREATED on the iPad. I used a wordprocessor, then converted it with an online converter to then be able to import the ePub file to my iPad. Not a “fluent” solution.

A few days ago, I ran across Dan Amos on Twitter,  announcing his soon to be released app called Book Creator  (Released on September 15, 2011). When I contacted him to find out the possible educational uses of the app, he was so kind to extend a promo code for me to give a test run.

The app is super intuitive! I was working on a book for my 7 year old niece (who lives in Brazil) in no time. It took me about 30 minutes to put together a book for her, publish in iBooks and email the ePub file to my brother…to open it up on his iPad…. for my niece to read it.

The book cover and project file  in the Book Creator app (image above)

The book ready to be read on the iBooks shelf. (image above)

The interface is uncluttered and simple. The most important buttons in the upper right toolbar are for  images, text, formatting and exporting.

I easily imported images, that were in my iPad Photo Album. Images that were not originally on the device, were saved quickly from Facebook, a website or an email attachment.

The text was a snap to insert and to format. My niece has taught herself how to read in Spanish (her parents speak Spanish to her), while the official language at her school is Portuguese. She is also starting to learn German. The color coded boxes contain the text in Spanish and German for her.

I used Wikipedia to save the images of the map and flag into my photo album. I received rave reviews from my niece about the book. She absolutely loved it. We are currently writing a book together about her newest favorite music group :ABBA :)

This week another opportunity presented itself to test and use the app with students at school. Our school is hosting two children from Germany this school year. The sister is in first grade, the brother in 2nd grade. Both arrived a few weeks ago, without being able to speak one word of English. Their teachers, classmates, as well the rest of the school is quite curious and very eager to communicate with them.

The two siblings, six and seven years old, had never seen or touched an iPad before. They were immediately interested and eager to create a book. They came up with the title “Our School in Florida”. We talked about what kind of images they wanted in their book, then walked around to shoot them with the iPad. I showed them how to tap the image icon to insert their images onto a page and then resize them.

They dictated, in German, their comments for each image to me. I added a second textbox with the English translation for them.

Once completed, the book was sent to iBooks, ready to be synced with our classroom set of iPads and for the rest of their teachers and classmates to read. Both children were very excited and proud of their work. I was also able to see how many words in English they had already learned as they were describing the images to me and “helped” with the translation.

Book Creator  is an app that “finally” allows to anyone to create a book by staying completely within the iPad environment. It is an app that takes the concept of transformative teaching and learning to heart. I can envision many more uses for teachers and students.

  • Students creating their own textbooks, collaborating as each student contributes a chapter/topic/theme. The iBook shelf hosts and organized the library of all self-created books.
  • Students publish an essay or poetry anthology of their work.
  • The Official Scribe could pull information together from curriculum reviewer and researcher  (from the roles outlined by the Digital Learning Farm) at the end of a chapter or unit to create an iBook and share with the rest of the class.
  • Older students can create books with topics of interest for the younger students.
  • Connect with the Art teacher to have students create the accompanying illustrations for any book (First graders are going to be creating a book about the life cycle of the butterfly. They will illustrate the illustration during Art)

Features I would like to see the app develop:

  • Allowing copy/paste feature for text
  • Other language support (When I showed the app to our Hebrew teachers, they were excited and immediately wanted to know if the Hebrew alphabet was supported, including the right to left writing)
  • Ability to record audio into the book (Dan Amos already let me know that this feature is in the works for the next upgrade)
  • Ability to record or embed video into the book.
  • Collaboration possible between several (classroom set) of iPads. Ability to export and then insert pages created on another iPad, so students can create their own chapters or part of a larger book.
  • Ability to export book to an online space to then get an embed code, so book can be embedded on a classroom blog. Parents who do not have an eBook reader are able to view the book as well. Similar to Mixbook.

The app gets two thumbs up from me. I also placed Book Creator  on the highest level of my iPad’s Bloom’s Taxonomy. It opens up the possibility of amplifying writing, reading and sharing and “leaving a legacy” wth meaningful work. The app is a great example of increased fluency on the iPad.

I already have talked with several teachers on different grade levels to collaborate in getting the iPads with the app in students’ hands and see what they will create.  Stay tuned…

Take a look at the video from the developer to learn more about its features.

Currently there are "7 comments" on this Article:

  1. [...] Finally! A Book Creator App About Michael M Grant Dr. Michael M. Grant is a passionate professor, researcher, and consultant. He works with faculty members, schools and universities, and districts to integrate technology meaningfully and improve teaching and learning. When 140 characters just won't work, then he blogs here at Viral-Notebook.com. He has a beautiful wife and three equally beautiful daughters, who will change the world. Visit Michael M's Website. View other posts by Michael M Grant –> No Comments Yet – be the First! Leave a Reply Click here to cancel reply. Name Required: [...]

  2. Bekah Palmer says:

    Wow, I’ve been researching language learning strategies recently, and this looks like a great tool for helping teachers incorporate some direct cognitive strategy practice into their instruction (in a fun way). I wrote an introduction already (see here if you are interested: http://palmerlanguage.blogspot.com/2011/09/language-learning-strategies.html), but I can’t wait to mention this article when I go more in-depth about the specific strategies! Definitely bookmarking it, thanks!


  3. [...] Ideale per libri illustrati per bambini, libri fotografici, libri d’arte, libri di cucina, manuali e libri di testo, penso che sia uno strumento adatto anche alle piccole case editrici e per l’istruzione. Su questo argomento consiglio di leggere il bel post di langwitches.org. [...]

  4. [...] seems like the easiest tool for making “talking books” on the iPad. Langwitches has a tutorial on using it. I originally heard about the tool from Lea [...]

  5. […] She started using Book Creator after being introduced to it by her colleague Silvia Tolisano, who has long been an advocate of using Book Creator in the classroom. […]

Comment on this Article:

Subscribe to Langwitches via Email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner


Choose a Category

In Need of Professional Development?

Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano for customized workshops, coaching and presentations.
Video Conference sessions available.

For a list of sample sessions visit Globally Connected Learning .

Want to Learn More About iPads in the Classroom?

Professional Learning Board just released a Self-study iPads in the Classroom course I wrote. It is a self-directed course to take in your own time and at your own speed.


Upcoming Books

Like Langwitches on Facebook

Digital Storytelling Tools for Educators

Guest Posts

Augmented Reality that’s “Real” and Focused on Learning


cross posted with permission from Dr. Silvana Meneghini,’s On The Edge Blog. Silvana, the High School Technology Coordinator at Graded, The American School of São Paulo, shared a How-To post to connect augmented reality to student reflection by adding a layer of learning (not technology for technology sake). I highly …


Upgrading Our Recipes for Learning: Digital Learning Strategies


In an attempt to bring  new additions to your Blog reader, I am starting to feature  guest posts on Langwitches. Be assured that these guest posts are from educational bloggers, I highly value and their voices contribute significantly to my own learning. Today I am sharing a blog post and …

(No Comments)

Is Technology shoving Pedagogy to the center stage? TPACK Reviewed


Guest post by Silvana Meneghini, Academic Technology Coordinator, Graded- American School of São Paulo. Originally posted on her blog On the Edge. Pedagogical ideas like student centered learning, collaboration, and critical thinking have been around for a long time and are slowly making the way into the classroom. When technology …


Professional Development

How to Create a Backchannel Exit Ticket for Class, Presentation or Workshop?


This screencast below will show you how to use Google Docs as a backchannel or exit ticket during a presentation, lesson or workshop. Creating a BackChannel or Exit Ticket on Google Docs from langwitches on Vimeo.

(1 Comment)

Redefining My Learning


Silvana Meneghini and I  work as Academic Technology Coordinators at Graded, the American School of São Paulo. ” A flashlight in the fog of technology integration“, initially the title of a conference workshop proposal, quickly developed into the desire of creating a framework to guide and coach teachers based on …

(1 Comment)

SAMR Exercise Google Hangout: Mark Your Calendars


Silvana Meneghini and I  have created a template for technology, learning and literacy coaches. In an effort to create a depository of examples and scenarios for lessons and activities and how an upgrade movement through the stages of the SAMR model actually looks like in the classroom, we are shared …



21st Century Learning

Visible Thinking in Math- Part 1


The conversation about visible thinking in Math started with one of our teachers at Graded, The American School of São Paulo, Adam Hancock, wanting to know how he could incorporate having students’ use their blogfolios in Math class. It seemed natural to have students write for Humanities (Language Arts and …


Redefining My Learning


Silvana Meneghini and I  work as Academic Technology Coordinators at Graded, the American School of São Paulo. ” A flashlight in the fog of technology integration“, initially the title of a conference workshop proposal, quickly developed into the desire of creating a framework to guide and coach teachers based on …

(1 Comment)

Reflection in the Learning Process, Not As An Add On


Is it personality? Are some people born with it? Can it be learned? I am talking about REFLECTION. At the beginning of the week, I had the opportunity to be part of a workshop during our pre-service ( we just returned from our summer break here in the Southern Hemisphere) …


The Digital Learning Farm in Action

Student Tutorials- MineCraft, How to Ride a Horse, iMovie and more


It is no secret, that I am a big fan of Alan November‘s Digital Learning Farm concept. I especially believe in Teaching is the Highest Form of Understanding and the power of motivation and demonstration of evidence of student learning via the Tutorial Designer role. See a myriad of blog …


3 Need-Scenarios to Engage Students with Authentic Tasks


Alan November’s concept of the Digital Learning Farm, asks schools and teachers to empower students by giving them relevant responsibilities that allow them to contribute in  meaningful ways to their learning community (class/school/etc.). How can we give students the opportunity to CONTRIBUTE versus completing projects that end up in the …


Blogging as the Official Scribe of the Classroom


Alan November elevated the “Official Scribe” as one of the roles that empower student learners. I see the role of the scribe as follows: The official scribe plays an important role in the classroom community. Their work is essential for students who were absent from class or need a review …


Global Education

NASA’s Global Selfie Crowdsourced on Earth Day


Today, April 22, 2014, NASA is crowdsourcing Global Selfies. NASA astronauts brought home the first ever images of the whole planet from space. Now NASA satellites capture new images of Earth every second. For Earth Day we are trying to create an image of Earth from the ground up while …

(No Comments)

Selfies Around the World


  On the heels of The Cultural Phenomena of Selfies and  iPhoneography: Photo Challenges, Ideas & Literacy, students from the American School of São Paulo, Brazil want to know more about Selfies around the world. If you and your students would like to CONTRIBUTE with actual images for an in- school and online exhibition …


Julie Lindsay: Designing Engaging Curriculum for Global Collaboration in the Classroom

Following the post:  Note- Taking Learnflow of a Conference Workshop, here is the second story of my curated tweets from a session with Julie Lindsay. My favorite take away from her well run workshop was her quote “Flat learning is a pedagogy”. Amplifying our classroom, allowing students to reach out …

(No Comments)

Blogging With your Classroom

There is More to Blogging with Your Students


There is more to blogging with your students than simply creating a blog and starting to copy and paste work, that traditionally was done on a paper journal or worksheet in the classroom, into that digital space. Blogging is about quality and authentic writing in digital spaces with a global …

(No Comments)

You Have 1 Second to Hook a Potential Reader


If you are blogging with your students, you have been exposed to them. You have been exposed to hundreds of unimaginative, cloned, generic and uninspiring BLOG TITLES. When opening your RSS reader that contains the latest blog posts of your students,  you are confronted with a list, similar to the …

(1 Comment)

Student Led Conferences: Sick and Tired of Blogs & Reflection?


Our students just finished a second round of Student Led Conferences (SLC) this school year (one in Semester 1 and another in Semester 2). SLCs are a formal opportunity for students to present to their parents about the state of their learning. The students’ advisor (a teacher responsible for a …

(1 Comment)


Evaluating iPad Apps


I wanted to take a closer look at the iPad Evaluation I previously blogged about in Evaluating Apps with Transformative Use in Mind. The section of Content and Components deserved a closer look and explanation. You can  download the PDF file of the iPad App Evaluation for the Classroom with …

(No Comments)

Visible Thinking in Math- Part 1


The conversation about visible thinking in Math started with one of our teachers at Graded, The American School of São Paulo, Adam Hancock, wanting to know how he could incorporate having students’ use their blogfolios in Math class. It seemed natural to have students write for Humanities (Language Arts and …


Self- Directed Course: iPads in the Classroom


Professional Learning Board just released a Self-study  iPads in the Classroom course I wrote. It is a  self-directed course to take in your own time and at your own speed. “You have an iPad in your classroom, now what?” The iPad helps us prepare today’s student for today’s world in …


Digital Storytelling

Poetry on Record


Inspired by Poetry, Performance & Taylor Mali and Beyond…, 8th grade Humanities teacher Shannon Hancock coached her students to create their own original “Mali Poem”and record a visual and vocal performance. I joined the class to give a brief overview of presentation design. I used selected slides from my slidedeck below to …

(No Comments)

Workflow & Learnflow of an Animation Story


After teaching a 1:1 Toolkit class for incoming Middle Schoolers tothe 1:1 laptop environment this past quarter, I am currently teaching a Media Basics course for sixth graders. I am using a school blog to document the class (among others), showcase student work, share resources and give written step-by-step directions …

(No Comments)

My StoryTelling App Folder(s)


Matt Gomez shared a post today with a screenshot of his storytelling iPad app folder. I wanted to reciprocate and share mine. Storytelling I Folder StoryBuddy StoryBuilder StoryPagesHD Toontastic Tappy Memories StoryBoards Premium StoryMaker HD StoryPatch In a World … Drama Build a Story PhotoPuppets HD Epic Citadel Sock Puppets …


%d bloggers like this: