Excellent Tools, Apps, and Tips to Create Educational Book Trailers

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November 12, 2014
There are several ways to use technology to engage students and enhance their literacy skills and one of them is through creating video book trailers. Yes, they are similar to movie trailers we see now on YouTube but they are different in scope. A video book trailer  is a concise review of a book created with the help of a variety of digital tools that include : images, text, clips, voiceovers, recordings, and music.

 Why include book trailers in your instruction?
  • Creating book trailers is a comprehensive learning task in which students get to experiment with different literacies.
  • Book trailers is a good way to get reluctant readers to read
  • Book trailers are good for those readers who find it hard to visualize what they read
  • Book trailers are a good alternative for the traditional book reports
Tips on how to create Book Trailers
Here are two sources I would recommend for learning about some important tips to keep in mind when working on book trailers:

1- Book Trailers for Readers
This wiki page created by teacher librarian Michelle Harclerode features some useful ideas to walk you through the process of creating a book trailer.There are also some good video explanations of how to use some tools mentioned there.

2- Book trailers: Our process
This is a slideshow created by Bibliokat that provides an insightful explanation of the importance of book trailers in literacy learning. It also feature a variety of tips, ideas and resources to hep you make book trailers.

3- Creating Book Trailers
This is another wonderful resources that offers tools and tips to help you integrate book trailers in your instruction.

Sample of Book Trailers
These are some good resources where you can access and watch examples of book trailers created by students.

1- Book Trailers for Readers
This resource features numerous book trailers including the SSYRA award winners.

2- Teen Ya Book Trailers
This is a Pinterest board that has over 30 examples of book trailers

3- Book Trailers- Movies for Literacy
This page contains over 100 book trailers designed to increase student motivation to read. These samples cover the following levels: early elementary, late elementary and adolescent book trailers.

Tools to create Book trailers:

I- Audio resources:
1- Vimeo Music Store
Provides hundreds of free music clips to use on videos.

2- Free Sound Project
Free Sound Project is a collaborative database of Creative Commons Licensed sounds. You can use it to download and share music.

3- SoundBibleSoundBible offers thousands of free sound effects, sound clips, and straight up sounds. These sounds can be used in a variety of sound projects including Video Sound Scores, Movie Scoring, Game Design, Powerpoint Presentations, Prank Calls, Sound Boards, and the list goes on. SoundBible.com is a great source for copyright free sounds.

4- Royalty Free MusicRoyaltyfreemusic.com offers a variety of FREE high-quality royalty-free items, including royalty-free stock footage, royalty-free sound effects, royalty-free clip art, royalty-free images, royalty-free photos, and of course, royalty-free stock music. The free Royalty Free Music section provides you with the resources you need to complete a variety of educational, personal, and non-profit projects.

5- The Free Music Archive
The Free Music Archive is an interactive library of high-quality, legal audio downloads directed by WFMU, the most renowned freeform radio station in America.Inspired by Creative Commons and the open source software movement, the FMA provides a legal and technological framework for curators, artists, and listeners to harness the potential of music sharing. Every artist page will have a bio and links to the artists’ home page for users to learn more about the music they discover via the Free Music Archive.

II- Image sources
Here are some sources that provide images that are in public domain or under CC licenses.

1- Pixabay
On Pixabay you may find and share images free of copyrights. All pictures are published under Creative Commons public domain deed CC0.You can copy, modify, distribute and use the images, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission and without paying attribution. However, depicted content may still be protected by trademarks, publicity or privacy rights.

2- Pic4LearningPics4Learning is an open project where anyone ( particularly photographers ) can join in and add their photos. The library counts thousands of free images which are all approved for classroom use. These images are also indexed and stored into different categories making it easy for teachers and students to browse and search through them. Have a look and share with us if you know of other similar copyright friendly image resources.

3- Public Domain PicturesPublicDomainPictures.net is a repository for free public domain images. Material can easily be browsed by various categories, including professional or seasonal photos. Image tags allow an easy search.

4-MorguefileThe morguefile contains photographs freely contributed by many artists to be used in creative projects by visitors to the site.

5- FlickrThis is another great resource of free images and similar to Google Images, Flickr offers a search functionality that you can use to look for only public domain pictures. Refine your query in Flickr using advanced search to look for and find free images.

III- Video Tools
1- Animoto iPad app/ Web tool 
Turn your photos into stunning, professional-quality videos, complete with music and text

2- WeVideo iPad App/ Web tool
WeVideo is a collaborative, cloud-based online video editor that is free to use, with affordable options to export in HD and store additional videos.

3- Google Story BuilderThis Story Builder allows you to create mini-movies or video stories with the feel of Google Docs. You can also personalize the videos you create using the characters, story, and even music of your choosing and when you finish you can share your final product with others.

4- iMovie
Make beautiful HD movies anywhere with iMovie, the fast and fun moviemaking app that puts everything you need to tell your story at your fingertips. Browse and play projects in the Marquee view. Create Hollywood-style trailers or sophisticated home movies in minutes.