Wednesday, March 26, 2014

2014 Georgia Children's Literature Conference and a Little Augmented Reality

I had a blast at the 2014 Georgia Children's Literature Conference.

I got to meet some fun authors like Jennifer Holm author of the Babymouse and new Squish series...

and Jodi Moore author of When a Dragon Moves In, winner of the 2013 Georgia Children's Picture Storybook Award...

and Susan Nees, author/illustrator of the new Missy series.  She was super nice and I found out that even though her last name is spelled differently, it's pronounced the same as Nase.  Wow! She actually lives around the Atlanta area, so I hope to have her come visit Moreland soon.

I also attended some great workshops while at the conference and bumped into Jennifer Lewis of the Miss Liberry Teacher blog who was co-presenting about augmented reality and demonstrated how she used Aurasma and several other AR apps.  I was so excited that I came back and downloaded the apps myself.

If you are not familiar with augmented's basically a way to make pictures look 3D.  Here is a video that explains AR a little bit...

There are many story books that come with a free app download that make the pages come "alive."  Here are some videos of a few of those books:

Augmented Reality Storybook

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

Super cool, right?  I really think AR is going to become the next big thing.  And that is why I like the Aurasma app.  It allows users to make whatever they want into AR.  

You can see how the app works by viewing this tutorial video.  This was just one of the many Aurasma tutorial videos on YouTube. 

There are so many possibilities for using Aurasma in the classroom and in the library.  Instead of a QR code, scan a picture of a book and a student book review video will pop up.  Scan a library section sign and hear a description of what types of books are in that section.  Take a tour of the school and stop at designated areas to scan a sign to watch a video from a student. You can see in the videos above some of the ways other schools have been using Aurasma.

I took the book The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing and made what is called "auras" to appear throughout the book, when it is viewed with the camera through the Aurasma app.  That was such a big hit that I decided to try it with another book, Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell.  It really blew their minds...and they were paying attention the whole time!  If you are interested you can access the auras I created once you download the Aurasma app.  To access The Night Before St. Patrick's Day, click here.  To access Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon, click here.  Please note that you will only be able to view these links through a mobile device.

A couple of other cool AR apps that Jennifer shared were the Guinness Book of World Records AR apps for the 2013 and 2014 books.  They are a free download in iTunes and they make about 10 of the pages in each book come alive.  Here are videos of both of the apps and books.

Guinness World Records 2013

Guinness World Records 2014

We actually have both of these Guinness books so I downloaded the apps and showed them to my PreK and second grade classes. They loved it!  

Now to just have the time to make some more cool things with Aurasma.  I would love to create an end of the year scavenger hunt for students to show they know how to locate books in specific areas.  Maybe over Spring Break I will work on that one.  =)

Note: Since this post was first published, Aurasma has become HP Reveal.  However, all trigger images created with Aurasma should still work with the new HP Reveal app.

What cool apps have you come across lately?


  1. Those apps seem pretty cool! Thanks for sharing!! Now if only my school had ipads......sigh.....

    Mind Sparks

    1. Don't give up hope! You may get iPads one day. =) Have you tried writing a grant? might be a good option to try.

  2. Can you share how you added the animated images to the picture books? I have created auras with student videos but just tried with an animated image and it's not moving?


    1. Okay...I was able to create one on the computer but it's not showing up on the IPad app? Did you come across this bump when you were creating your auras?

      Thanks again!

    2. Open the Aurasma app, click on the A at the bottom and then click on the + to create a new aura. Then search and select an animated aura from the library in Aurasma and assign it to a page in the book by hovering the iPad over the page. Not all of the images in the Aurasma library are animated, so perhaps you selected one that was not animated. You also need an Internet connect for the auras to appear because Aurasma accesses the auras over the Internet. Hope that answers your question.

    3. I have only created auras through the iPad, not through the computer, so I am not sure what might have happened. I do know that If you created it through the computer, you would have to "share" the link to it to your iPad for it show up using your iPad. Also, check to be sure you are signed in with the same account information on both your computer and your iPad.

  3. thanks for the tips...I didn't realize you pulled yours from the your blog! Thanks for all the great idea!

  4. Hi Jo, I'm catching up on all of my favorite blogs and just saw this! Thanks for coming to my session! I am so glad I finally got to meet you in person! I hope to blog about using augmented reality soon. :)

    1. Thanks, Jennifer! So glad we got to meet and hang out. Thanks for inspiring me to try something new. Can't wait to read your next AR post! =)