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 reality...it'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. =)
What cool apps have you come across lately?