As educators, we’re continually seeking innovative ways to engage our students and make learning both exciting and meaningful. One increasingly popular tool that marries creativity, literacy, and digital skills is the use of comic creation apps in the classroom.
Comics, with their blend of visuals and text, provide a unique storytelling medium that appeals to students’ imagination, motivates reluctant readers and writers, and makes complex ideas more accessible.
These sequential art narratives aren’t just for entertainment; they are powerful educational resources that can revolutionize the way students approach their learning.
Today’s digital landscape offers a myriad of applications designed to help students craft their own comic masterpieces. They allow students to step into the shoes of an artist, writer, and designer, all at the same time, fostering a multidimensional approach to learning.
These tools also encourage critical thinking, as students must consider narrative flow, character development, dialogue, and visual representation to effectively communicate their stories or ideas.
This blog post aims to highlight some of the best apps to make comics available for students. Each one brings unique features that make comic creation a breeze, allowing students to focus on the essential part – the storytelling.
Ways to Use Comic Apps with Students
Comic making apps offer a fun and engaging way to introduce new concepts, reinforce lessons, and assess comprehension. They can also be used to develop literacy and critical thinking skills, as well as creativity and storytelling.
Here are some ways teachers can utilize comic making apps in the classroom:
- Storytelling and Creative Writing: Students can use comic strip apps to develop their own stories. They can create characters, settings, and plots, and use the comic format to map out their narratives. This is an excellent exercise for developing writing skills and creativity.
- Explaining Concepts: Comics can be used to explain complex concepts in a simplified and engaging manner. For instance, in science lessons, students could create a comic strip to explain the process of photosynthesis or the water cycle.
- Book Reports: Instead of a traditional written book report, students can create a comic strip that summarizes the story or depicts key events and characters in the book they’ve read.
- Historical Events: Students can create comic strips that depict historical events, helping them to better understand and remember these events. This also encourages research and critical thinking skills.
- Teaching Language and Grammar: Teachers can use comics to teach elements of language and grammar. For instance, students can create dialogues for their characters, helping them practice writing dialogue and using punctuation correctly.
- Classroom Rules and Procedures: Students can create comics that illustrate classroom rules or procedures, which not only helps them remember these rules but also gives them ownership of their learning environment.
- Social and Emotional Learning: Comics can be used to discuss and explore emotions, social situations, and perspectives. For instance, students can create a comic strip about a conflict between characters and show how it could be resolved. For more, check out best social emotional learning apps.
- Assessing Understanding: Teachers can use comic creation as a form of assessment. After a lesson, students can create a comic that illustrates their understanding of the topic.
Remember, when using comic making apps, it’s crucial to give students clear instructions and examples, and also provide them with the freedom to express their creativity.
Best Apps to Make Comics
Here is our picks for best apps to make comics:
1. Adobe Express
Adobe Express is another good comic maker app for students and teachers. It offers more or less the same features as Canva: You can start creating your comic using pre-designed customizable templates or you can design yours from scratch.
You can upload images, add text to photos, remove/add backgrounds, apply text effects, and more. Adobe Express also offers access to ‘thousands of royalty-free Adobe Stock collection photos, Adobe Fonts, icons, backgrounds, and more.’
ComicBook is a good comic maker app that has been around for several years now. The app now includes a wide variety of new features that makes it super easy to create and share comics.
Some of these features include various graphic effects, tons of inspiring layouts, over 300 hand-drawn comic stickers, 12 caption and text tools, several comic fonts, and many more. Comics created through ComicBook can be saved to photo library or as editable PDF files.
Compatibility: iPhone/iPad/ Price: $3.99, offers in-app purchases / Age: 4+
Inkwork enables you to convert photos into ink drawings and create cartoon images to use in your comic strips. The app offers a wide variety of features including over 90 style variations and various ink and paper colour. Inkwork allows you to take photos or use photos in your camera roll and transform them into beautiful pieces of art.
Compatibility: iPhone/iPad / Price: Free, offers in-app purchases / Age: 4+
4. Comic Art
Comic Art is another good comic photo editor that enables you to create comic cartoon illustrations. Some of the editing features it offers include shadow depth (e.g., adjust the solid density of the image), tone setting (e.g., change the tone applied to images), outline setting (e.g, change the settings of images), colour setting and many more.
Canva is a great comic maker app to use with students. It offers all the features you need to design beautiful comics. You can start with pre-made templates and edit them the way you want. Alternatively, you can build your comic strip from scratch. You can add text, shapes, characters, backgrounds, call-outs, stickers, images, and many more.
Once your comics are ready you have different sharing options to choose from. You can share them via email, on social media platforms, publish them online, print them out, download them in PDF or PNG format and many more. To learn more about this comic maker app I invite you to check canva full review.
6. Book Creator
Book Creator is an excellent app for creating digital books. Students can add text, images, audio, and video to their pages, making their stories interactive and engaging. Check out our full review of Book Creator to learn more.
Compatibility: iPhone/iPad and online/ Price: Free, offers in-app purchases / Age: 4+