Creating pictures in your head from text in a book is one way of reading. I’m finding more examples of online reading experiences which combine animation and interactivity and transform the reading experience. Whether you lean towards lamenting the loss of private headspace or not, you must admit that some of the story apps are beautifully crafted, and even you might not be able to keep your hands off them once your start reading.
One such iPad app is the Morris Lessmore story –
Put yourself in Morris’ shoes as you dive into the story of Mr. Lessmore and his flying friends through Moonbot Studios’ first Interactive Storybook. In this reinvention of digital storytelling you can repair books, tumble through a storm, learn the piano and even get “lost in a book,” flying through a magical world of words, giving you a dynamic journey through the story. This iPad App has been touted by Apple as one of the “Top New Apps for the iPad,” and will surely be enjoyed by children and adults alike. Using rich CG animation, innovative interactivity, original composed music, and unique games sprinkled throughout the book, this App will revive a love of story in all.
I’ve included 3 short videos about the making of Morris –
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/21823500 w=400&h=225]
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/23216951 w=400&h=225]
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/24570687 w=400&h=225]
Although the story is obviously suitable for younger students, I think that there is also so much a middle school teacher could do with it, from the perspective of storytelling, illustration and animation. It could be used as a writing prompt or studied for film technique. Students might create their own illustrated story or animation. I love the marriage of art and story! I remember how upset I was when, as a young child, I moved from picture books to pictureless books. Now with graphic novels, animations for all ages and increasing interactive and animated book apps, I’m happy again!