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The Sandbox

Use this area to play with different digital storytelling tools and apps.

Site: Cursos tutorizados en línea
Course: Digital Storytelling for Teachers
Book: The Sandbox
Printed by: Guest user
Date: Wednesday, 6 July 2022, 12:26 PM

1 Home

Welcome to the Sandbox! Please grab a tool/app and play!

The Sandbox is where you can experiment with free digital storytelling tools and apps

Follow these 3 steps:

  1. Choose the type of tool/app you would like to experiment with. The different categories are listed in the Table of Contents box on the left of this page.
  2. When you go to that page, click on the link that will take you to the digital desktop where you can choose one of the tools by clicking on the icon. If you don't like that tool, click on another icon.
  3. Play with the tool and create with it.
  4. Post your stories in our class Digital Storytelling Glossary which we will try to fill with different examples of stories.

2 Comic Creation Tools & Apps

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of free comic tools. Click on any of the icons to be led to that comic creator. Scroll down this page to see written descriptions of some of the tools.  This resource is continuously updated. When you are finished with your creation, please add it to our Digital Storytelling Glossary.

  • Creaza- Create comics, make movies, edit audio, and more! Embed in a blog or wiki. 
  • Bubblr- Create your comic strip with Flickr pictures and add bubbles to tell your story!
  • Bitstrips- Not free, but offers a 30-day free trial and includes more educational support (e.g., activities) than most other comic generators.
  • Make Beliefs Comix- Two, three and four panel comics that you can create in multiple languages.
  • Comic Strip Generator- You can upload photos or use web images in addition to their library of ready-to-use images.
  • Garfield- You can create comic strips or (in Comics Lab Extreme) comic books.
  • ToonDoo - The site allows students to share their comics, comment on other comics, and even save and edit a copy of a comic.
  • Phrase It- Add speech bubbles to pictures.

3 Video Storytelling Tools

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of free video creation tools. Click on any of the icons to be led to that tool. Scroll down this page to see written descriptions of some of the tools.  This resource is continuously updated. When you are finished with your creation, please add it to our Digital Storytelling Glossary.

  • Dvolver- Create a video writing your text and choosing your characters and scene.
  • BombayTV- Write subtitles for Bollywood films.
  • Jing- A tool to screen capture your screen. 
  • DomoAnimate- Make your own animations.
  • OneTrueMedia- Mix your photos and pictures with text and animations.
  • Blabberize- Make your pictures talk.
  • Screenr- Record your screen activity with audio.
  • Fotobabble- Create videos with audio and your voice. Free mobile app for iOS.
  • Skqueak- Create videos with audio and your voice. Draw on your pictures.  Free mobile app for iOS.

4 Collaborative Storytelling Tools

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of free collaborative storytelling tools. Click on any of the icons to be led to that tool. Scroll down this page to see written descriptions of some of the tools.  This resource is continuously updated. When you are finished with your creation, please add it to our Digital Storytelling Glossary.

  • VoiceThread for Educators- Interactive way to present stories and have parents and other students comment on the stories. Several options. Embed in a blog or wiki.
  • BiteSlide- Digital slidebooks with images, videos, and text. Collaborate & edit.
  • Prezi- Collaborate on a slide presentation that you can transform into a video. Cool graphics and interface. Embeddable. Free iPad app.

5 Storybook Creation Tools

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of free storybook creation tools. Click on any of the icons to be led to that tool. Scroll down this page to see written descriptions of some of the tools.  This resource is continuously updated. When you are finished with your creation, please add it to our Digital Storytelling Glossary.

  • Zooburst- My favorite storybook creation tool. The web tool is absolutely amazing and fantastic for students to create online 3D pop-up books they can embed, add their own photos to, and create written dialogues for.  They can interact with their story using the Augmented Reality option. The free iPad app allows students to read the stories made and students scan Zooburst Story Codes to read the digital story made online.
  • Little Bird Tales- Students can draw their own art or upload images to create a book where they add their voice and text to narrate their story. Then they can embed, create PDFs and MP4s of their stories. Available for i-devices for $2.99 but the web tool allows for the creation of free stories.
  • Storybird-Perhaps the easiest storybook creation tool! Students create beautiful stories by choosing beautiful art and adding the words. Embed in a blog or wiki.
  • MixBook- Students can upload their pictures, choose from a variety of themes, backgrounds, text, and stickers. It’s a digital scrapbook that’s embeddable.
  • Bookr- Students choose from Flickr pics. They can upload their Flickr pics. They create the text, embeddable.
  • UTellStory- Create a digital story with photos, video, voice, music and words,  embeddable.
  • Storyjumper- Similar to Storybird. Students choose from art collections by artists, create the text; not embeddable like Storybird.
  • Panraven- Students upload their pictures , create the text; embeddable.
  • BoomWriter- Easiest way to get your students to create a collaborative book for the whole class, with another class, or in small groups. Students collaboratively create a book, then vote on which chapters should be included in the finished product.
  • Picture Book Maker- Create a beautiful children’s book by choosing characters and props and creating the text. The end product looks like a real book that children can order.
  • Simple Booklet- Create flip books with beautiful images and text. This is more ideal for teens to adults. No registration required.
  • The Art of Storytelling- Create books by choosing works of art. Record yourself telling the story.
  • Dr. Seuss Story Creator- Choose music, text, backgrounds and feature some of your favorite Dr. Seuss characters.
  • Where Did the River Go- Students read interactive story adventures, then can change the story.
  • Pinky Dinky Doo- For kids. Children pick what kind of story to create, then they fill in gaps in a story that has characters and a plot line.
  • Storymaker by British Council- This is more of a story generator. Students get to choose the type of story, then choose various elements of a story that has already been created.

Storybook Creation Apps

  • Storypanda-  Features books with tap, swipe, and drag. Choose backgrounds and characters, etc. Kids can place themselves into the story or create their own stories.
  • StoryKit- Create an electronic storybook by drawing on the screen, uploading images, recording sound effects and voice, laying out the elements of the story (text boxes, images, paint, and sound clips) freely by dragging them or pinching to resize, reordering pages, and uploading to the StoryKit web server. Email a link to the story. The application includes four public domain children’s books to rewrite and rearrange into a new story. Available on the iPad and iPod.
  • StoryBots- create books on the iPad starring the student! The app is free for the iPad. Includes animations and art. Various options to purchase the book.
  • Flying Books App-(free, i-devices) Multimedia books offered in English, French, Spanish and German. Kids listen to an expert narrator or read on their own. Record a story or create personalized books with artwork and photos.
  • Picture Book- Create a picture book with your photos and text or choose from a variety of stickers, templates, and pictures. For idevices
  • Bunsella Bedtimes Story- students narrate a children’s story, can upload personal photos that become part of the story, then email the video of the narrated story. Others can respond to these read stories. Available on i-devices.
  • Mooklet for iPhone- create photo stories with text.

6 Mobile Storytelling Apps- IOS

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of free mobile storytelling IOS apps. Click on any of the icons to be led to that tool. Scroll down this page to see written descriptions of some of the tools.  This resource is continuously updated. When you are finished with your creation, please add it to our Digital Storytelling Glossary.

  • Storypanda-  Features books with tap, swipe, and drag. Choose backgrounds and characters, etc. Kids can place themselves into the story or create their own stories.
  • StoryKit- Create an electronic storybook by drawing on the screen, uploading images, recording sound effects and voice, laying out the elements of the story (text boxes, images, paint, and sound clips) freely by dragging them or pinching to resize, reordering pages, and uploading to the StoryKit web server. Email a link to the story. The application includes four public domain children’s books to rewrite and rearrange into a new story. Available on the iPad and iPod.
  • StoryBots- create books on the iPad starring the student! The app is free for the iPad. Includes animations and art. Various options to purchase the book.
  • Flying Books App-(free, i-devices)Multimedia books offered in English, French, Spanish and German. Kids listen to an expert narrator or read on their own. Record a story or create personalized books with artwork and photos.
  • Picture Book- Create a picture book with your photos and text or choose from a variety of stickers, templates, and pictures. For idevices.
  • Bunsella Bedtimes Story- students narrate a children’s story, can upload personal photos that become part of the story, then email the video of the narrated story. Others can respond to these read stories. Available on i-devices.
  • Mooklet for iPhone- create photo stories with text.
  • Animoto- Upload up to 10 images, choose a soundtrack from the library (many nice holiday tunes to choose from, and click a button to make a 30-second video. Sync your videos with your Animoto.com account, download videos for offline viewing, and make longer ones with an All-Access Pass. Available on the iPad and iPod.
  • Videolicious- Video creation in 3 easy steps.
  • Create A Comic App
  • Toontastic Toon Tube (for iPad)
  • Cartoon Studio (iPhone/iPod/iPad app)- The free version gives you 3 strips with 2 characters, and you can choose from various backgrounds and characters.
  • Capzles- Free timeline creation and multimedia tool on iTunes.
  • Voicethread- One of the best free collaborative creation tools.
  • Pic Collage- Available on both IOS and Android. Create pic collages.
  • NightZooKeeper- A great free storytelling app about animals. Kids listen to stories about animals, play games, and create their own animals stories. Also check out their great website of lesson plan ideas. www.nightzookeeper.com/teachers

7 Mobile Storytelling Apps: Android

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of free Android apps for storytelling. Click on any of the icons to be led to that tool. Scroll down this page to see written descriptions of some of the tools.  This resource is continuously updated. When you are finished with your creation, please add it to our Digital Storytelling Glossary.

  • Magisto- Add cool effects, music, and transitions to transform your videos.
  • Animoto- Upload up to 10 images, choose a soundtrack from the library (many nice holiday tunes to choose from, and click a button to make a 30-second video. Sync your videos with your Animoto.com account, download videos for offline viewing, and make longer ones with an All-Access Pass. Available on the iPad and iPod.
  • Vidtrim- video editor for Android
  • QuoFx- Special effects added to a small video clip. Choose from a dinosaur, earthquake, and more

8 Other Digital Storytelling Tools

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of more free digital storytelling tools. Click on any of the icons to be led to that tool. Scroll down this page to see written descriptions of some of the tools.  This resource is continuously updated. When you are finished with your creation, please add it to our Digital Storytelling Glossary.

  • Primary Access- combine text, audio and images into compelling personal narratives and digital stories, with a simple movie-making process using primary source documents.
  • Creaza- Create comics, make movies, edit audio, and more! Embed in a blog or wiki.
  • 5CardFlickr- Tell your stories through Flickr photos.
  • Glogster- Poster your story.
  • Scholastic Story Starter- Start your story randomly.
  • TheStoryStarter- Start your story randomly.
  • SnackTools- Various tools including banner makers, flipbook makers, slide presentations, polls, and more. Try their flipbook tool which works on mobile devices. 
  • UTellStories- Tell stories with audio, image, video and words. Collaborate on topics.
  • BiteSlide- Digital slidebooks with images, videos, and text. Collaborate & edit.

9 Creative Commons Materials

Click on this link to be led to the Symbaloo of free creative common resources. Feel free to search these places for images and music to use in your projects. You must give them proper attribution. Click on any of the icons to be lead to that resource. Scroll down to see written descriptions of some of the resources.  This resource is continuously updated.

  • Wikimedia Commons (4 million images in the public domain)
  • Free Images (6000 stock photos, and they require you to credit them as the source)
  • World Images (80,000 photos from the California State University IMAGE project, under a non-commercial  CC license)
  • ELT Pics (Images taken by teachers for teachers, collected via Twitter and stored on Flickr, under a non-commercial CC license)
  • PhotoPin (a search engine that finds Creative Commons images)
  • Wylio- Search engine for CC images for bloggers
  • PhotoeXpress- lengthy registration process but you get 10 free quality stock images a day with a search engine and you don't have to attribute.
  • CCMixter.org- Great songs, music that is Creative Commons! Just give attribution
  • FreeSound- Free sound files and clips for use!
  • Soundzabound- Claims to be the ONLY royalty free music library which meets all the licensing and technology requirements needed for education!
  • Musicshake- Create copyright free music for your video.
  • Compfight- Search Flickr photos for your videos.
  • MorgueFile- Find free pictures for your videos.
  • Free Music Archive - Jamendo - RoyaltyFreeMusic-  Find free music.
  • SoundBible - FreeSound- Find sound effects.