Story Jumper

Story Jumper is a tool where you can create your own story. It is also totally free! It is very similar to Story Bird, but when I started working on Story Jumper, I preferred it. I thought it would be repetitive a bit, but I really liked the tool. It leaves imagination for both the students and teachers. It is also a very user friendly tool. You do not have to look up how it works it is very clear. The images are either in categories or you can just type what image you actually want. You can also upload any images , either from Google or your own desktop. Compared to Story Bird, you only have one type of story that you can create

You can create an account very quickly and once you are signed in you simply click on ”create new book”. To add new pages you simply click on add new page. To add the icons/images you simply click on the image on the side menu and it pops into the story page. Creating an account is free. You can either register like anyone else or as a teacher, where you can give feedback to your students. When you connect as a teacher, they give you a pin number for your students to enter. It is possible to choose the size of the icon, if you want it further behind other articles or on the first plan, to rotate it 360° and flip it side (meaning if the animal faces left you can make it face right). To write the story you can choose any type of box for the text, from transparent to a cloud and star rectangle. You can choose your own: props, scenes, photos and texts. If you want to print the book, it is possible. If you want a hardcover book it costs 24.95$ up to 24 pages and 0.50$ for every additional page. (to order a hardcover though, the story must be at least 16 pages. To have an idea for the pricing visit: Story jumper. But don’t forget, you do not have to print it! You can read it online as well. An interesting point is that there is an auto-correct spelling tool, therefore it underlines words when there are mistakes in the text.

This story tool can be very useful in an ESL classroom because it gives the opportunity for teachers to write stories that are adapted to their students knowledge of English. Teachers can either focus on some vocabulary or even grammar rules that students have to learn or practice. If it is a lesson, teachers can use a project or SmartBoard© and show the story there. Mr. Walker thinks that it is possible to write stories that can be used to teach reading skills. These books may be read on a SmartBoard© or individually.  Later, the teacher can send the link to student s when they will study and practice. An advantage of the printing option (or saving for later) is that if you have other similar group(s) or you know you will have a similar group the year after, you have the possibility of re-using it. Having teachers write stories for their students is an option, but they can also have the students write one.

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Students can write books by either using specific verb tense, a specific content/theme (favorite sport), using specific words that were learned over the year. It brings out students creativity and they have fun. Once the students have done their books, they can either go in front of the class and present it, or read in small groups of four. Therefore, if the students are in front of the class, the teacher can grade their spoken English. The same if they are in small groups, the teacher can simply walk around a listen to them speak. They don’t actually realize that they are doing an oral presentation and speaking English. As we once did in elementary (when website like this weren’t very popular (or existed?) Our teacher had us (grade 6) write a small book about any subject of our choice (by hand) and present it to students in grade 1 or 2. It helped both students, us in grade 6 wanted everything to be of good English and the younger ones it gave them the chance to hear English somewhere else than by their teacher.

Another option in an ESL classrooms is to have them write ‘journals’ where students each month they can write about something they did well in school and say why they are proud. They can add a different page every time and at the end of the year see how much they improved. It can keep the motivated and have a positive attitude. Story Jumper gives the opportunity to students to practice their English, without necessarily know that they are, and have fun. As agreed by Educator Review, create a story about anything using engaging graphics and kids won’t realize they are writing!

According to me, a disadvantage I find is that you can only use this with children in elementary rather that in high school.

But, personally as a future ESL teacher I would really use this tool. It is very simple, fun and creative. Probably, according to me better than Story Bird for the usage I would do. It gives more possibilities for the images and props. It has children have fun while doing English and it can motivate them to go to their English course and find it important. Today, with all the technologies around us, students will get bored very fast with textbooks and regular paper work.

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