bee 1Swarm 6: Storytellers

Digital learners need to be able to use tools for sharing understandings.

The Old Way... Use software such as PowerPoint or Moviemaker to create communications.
The New Way... Use multimedia tools for communicating and sharing with the world.

Check out how a fifth grade class is using this tools with the topic of Lewis Hine.

On this page, explore tools for creating and tools for sharing. Then, choose three practical applications to keep your classroom "hive alive"!

Tools for Creating

Whether creating text, images, audio, or video, there are many online tools that can be used for both production and sharing.

Animation Creators

Animation tools allow students to create short animation projects and share them on the web.

Audio Creators

Consider the needs of your project. Is voice recording necessary or will computer-generated audio work? Are visual elements such as avatars or visuals needed? Would a movie or slide show tool accomplish the same goal?

Basic tools allow voice recording or computer-generated voices.

Advanced tools provide features such as audio commenting, slideshows, and other enhancements.

Comic Creators

For those services that don't provide an option to print or save, consider creating a screen shot.

Image Creators

Many tools help students create or edit images.

Map Creators

Add your own ideas and resources to popular maps or create your own.


Poster Creators

Rather than focusing on copy/paste activities, look for ways to promote deep thinking through digital posters.

Multimedia Presentation Creators

From basic presentation tools to full-featured multimedia authoring tools, you can find many options online. Keep in mind that many of these tools are intended to sells memory books or online services.

Basic presentation tools provide options similar to Microsoft Powerpoint online.

Intermediate presentation tools provide additional features such as interactivity, animation and other features.

Screen Capture Creators

From creating tutorials to sharing an experience, screen capture tools are a great way to share understandings.

Spreadsheet Creators

Online spreadsheets are great for collaboration.

Storytelling Creators

Tools are available for all ages who want to create online stories.

Video Creators

Most of the online tools are now subscription services. However try the following options.

Web Page Creators

Word Cloud Creators

Word clouds are an interesting way to visualize ideas using text. The result is a graphical representation of word frequency.

Word Processing Tools

Basic word processing and collaboration. Sometimes you want a quick, one-shot tool for student collaboration.

Advanced word processing tools allow collaboration, saving, and options for access and publishing.

Tools for Sharing

Many tools allow you to share materials you've created yourself. The key is examining the sharing features.

Document Sharing

Photo Sharing

Presentation Sharing

Create a presentation in Powerpoint or another tool and share it on the web.

Video Sharing

Keeping the Hive Alive

To help students become more effective storytellers...

Use the following activity starters to practice the role of storyteller:

  1. Entertain. Convey a story, imagine a world, illustrate an idea
  2. Emote. Express a feeling, illustrate an abstraction, move an audience
  3. Inform. Analyze information, explain causality, visualize ideas
  4. Instruct. Show strategies, explain concepts, teach others
  5. Challenge. Create dilemmas, envision problems, kickstart projects
  6. Engage. Announce events, document experiences, reflect on lessons
  7. Provoke. Arouse emotions, heighten awareness, change attitudes
  8. Persuade. Support arguments, show perspectives, convince others

Use the following product ideas to practice the role of storyteller:

  1. Debate. Create an online debate following official debate rules.
  2. Experiment. Share the entire process of a science experiment from idea to conclusion.
  3. Encyclopedia. Create an encyclopedia for a particular topic. Explore Wikibooks Wikijunior.
  4. Field Guides. Build field guides for a specific flora and fauna. Consider a project that focuses on a local area, habitat, or biome.
  5. Glossary. Create a visual glossary including definitions, images, animations, and videos.
  6. Inquiry. Share the process of a personal inquiry from questioning to reflection.
  7. Legislation. Track legislation and create your own fictional bills.
  8. Literature Circles. Share the progress of your literature circle.
  9. Local History. Create a local history project. Collaborate with the local library, genealogy group, or commuity members.
  10. Maps. Share biographies on maps.
  11. Mock Trial. Share a mock trial online including text and video.
  12. Mystery. Pose a mystery, provide clues and background information, the provide the solution.
  13. News Service. Create an online news service with articles, photographs, cartoons, and video.
  14. Oral History. Create an oral history project. Focus on a particular topic such as a time period, occupation, or geographic area.
  15. Portfolio. Create a porfolio that reflects your best work in a particular class or series of classes.
  16. Presentation. Create a multimedia presentation.
  17. Reader's Guide. Build a guide to your favorite book including summaries, chapter questions, insights, and new ideas that extend the book.
  18. Recipes. Create a recipe file. Consider a theme such as family, culture, healthy eating, or other topics.
  19. Reviews. Share reviews of books, articles, movies, and other types of entertainment and information.
  20. Scrapbook. Use collage, news, photos, and other ideas to create a scrapbook for a class or topic.
  21. Speech. Use video to record, edit, and share a speech.
  22. Storytelling. Write a story. Try some collaborative approaches such as a "choose your own adventure," multiple author story, chain story, add a chapter to a favorite book, or other approach.
  23. Study Guide. Help others by creating a study guide for some aspect of your class.
  24. Trace. Track the history of a person, place, or object.
  25. Tutorial. Create step-by-step instructions for completing a task.
  26. Virtual Field Trip. Record experiences in a local place and create a virtual experience.


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