The student as content creator - 15 Content creation apps for in the classroom
As education is slowly changing, I begin to notice a new trend. Teachers don’t take the lead anymore. Students do. We listen more and more to students and what they have to say. Students take the role of the teacher and the teacher guides them toward the finish line.
As teachers fall into the role of curators, students become the new content creators. Students creating content comes with some new must-haves: educational content creation tools.
There are thousand ways for students to create content, but in this post I’m focussing on creating digital content. This can be authoring tools or even content creation software.
Ready? Let’s get started!
15 educational content creation apps for students
I’m sure some of these content creation apps will look familiar. Make sure to scroll down a bit for some less known apps that are worth your attention! Besides the apps, you can read some fun content creation lesson ideas between the lines as well.
1. Book Creator
“Create. Read. Publish.” That’s what Book Creator is all about. Let your students create and write their own stories. Students can combine text, images, audio and video to create interactive stories, digital portfolios, journals, poetry books, science reports, manuals, comic adventures and much more. You name it, they create it.
Afterwards, students can publish their books and show you (or their parents) their masterpieces. Book Creator is an example of an easy-to-use authoring tool for students (and teachers).
Explain Everything is an interactive screen casting whiteboard. This means that students can make a presentation, and record everything they are drawing and saying. Draw, add pictures, highlight and write text. They even have a nice red pointer.
Want to know what students can do with Explain everything? Here are 10 fun ways students can use Explain Everything as content generators.
3. Adobe Spark
Adobe Spark is intuitive app that lets you or your students create animated videos in minutes. Choose a video lay out, import videos and images, add text and choose some music. That’s it!
In this video creator/editor, students can easily add and trim video clips to make their videos stand out in the classroom.
Students can choose an image from the Spark library that has over 25,000 beautiful iconic images or add their own photos to highlight what they have to say. Spark automatically adds cinematic motion to their story so they don’t have to be a pro in video editing.
And there’s more. Students can create their own webpage with Adobe Spark Page or create a good looking image with Adobe Spark Post.
Looking for a fun way to let your students do a lecture? Then, you should introduce your students to MySimpleShow. MySimpleShow is a simple online tool that empowers anyone to make professional videos.
MySimpleShow is very easy to use. Students can write their own video script, or they can even upload a PowerPoint file.
The first option lets them write a story and it will suggest some suitable images students can choose from and use in their video. At the end, students record their own voice, or they choose between voiceovers that are given.
MySimpleShow has some educational templates available as well.
With Canva, students can create presentations, social media graphics, compelling images, and much more. Canva provides thousands of beautiful layouts like magazine templates, presentations, letters, business cards, etc.
Tired of using PowerPoint or Keynote? Canva is the solution. Students can search instantly for good images and icons. There are also other creative elements like grids, frames, shapes, lines and charts.
Some of Canva’s images, icons and other designs are for free, and they offer a large range of premium ones as well. Don’t worry, students can just find a free image on another website (like these websites) and add it to their presentation.
Storybird is a powerful app that combines creative tools for writing, reading, and storytelling in educational settings. Students can make their own story. It makes students of all ages feel like “real authors” and bring their fantasy to life.
It’s also an adaptable, creative tool to enhance lesson plans and assignments for any grade level or subject matter. History? Let your students write a history-related story. Math? What about letting them create a story of a boy that encounters a problem in his life, and how he solved it with math?
Another really good option of storybird is the ability to purchase digital or print books and poems made by your students. Or even better: activate the optional fundraiser mode to involve families and raise money for your school.
Padlet can be used by students (and teachers). With padlet you can create an online post-it board that you can share with any student or teacher you want. Just give them the unique Padlet link. Padlet allows students to insert ideas anonymously or with their name. It’s easy to use and very handy.
Whoever has the Padlet board opened on his smartphone or computer, can see what’s on it and what everyone is writing. Students just have to take a device and start adding little sticky notes online. They can see all the ideas gathered on the teacher board immediately.
With Padlet you can go any directing you want. Click here to read about more content creation activities with Padlet for students and teachers!
You’ve probably never heard of zoom in your entire life. That’s because this software is mostly used in the business world. So what is it? Well, this content creation software lets you host webinars.
As a bigger project, let your students host their own webinar, by giving a presentation about a certain subject. The webinar can be about anything. Two birds, one stone. Students are creating content about your lesson topic and you’re preparing them for the business world already! Bonus: Zoom is free.
Tellagami helps you bring your messages to life. By combining photos, voice, 3D characters and personality on a mobile platform, they help you communicate in a way that’s never been possible.
Choose a character and personalize it. Then choose a mood (sad, happy, neutral, silly, angry,…). Change the background and record your voice. It’s as easy as it sounds.
The app is only available for Apple, though. But that doesn’t make it less cool. You can still share the video with your students via mail or social media.
10. Meme generator
Student created content can also be something out of the ordinary. Take a meme for example. Let students summarize a lesson by creating memes about the subject. Expect some hilarious outcomes that actually represent your lessons. It’s also a fun way that correlates with your student’s environment outside the school, which makes it easier for students to remember.
Let students create their own explainer videos, animations or YouTube introductions with Moovly. Moovly has over 600000 free templates, videos, animations and sounds. Students can also use their material and upload their own media. Moovly is very easy to use because of its drag and drop interface. Pick a video template or start from scratch; drag & drop, export & share the video. That’s it!
Kidblog is a blog environment that provides tools to safely publish student writing. Teachers can monitor the student activities within the community of “student authors”.
Kidblog gives students a voice and lets them write blog posts that can be published for real. Students write with a purpose for a real audience. Students are digital citizens within a secure environment.
13. Comic life
It’s sometimes said that students don’t read many books. But what they do read are Comic books. With Comic life, you bring comics to the classroom.
Let students create stunning comics from their own images. The app has a lot of fonts, templates, panels, balloons, cations and lettering art available to transform your student’s story into a creative comic book.
Students could create book reports in comic style, summarize a lesson, develop creative flyers, and so on.
Are your students very talkative? Why not let them create their own podcast instead of writing a review? Switch things up and use Spreaker to record a new podcast episode or to stream live. Talk about an amazing digital project!
How cool would it be for students to create their own podcast about certain important persons (music stars, actors, authors, scientists, …) or historical events?
BookWidgets is actually a content creation tool for teachers, but students can make use of it as well.
BookWdigets has over 40 exercise templates that teachers can adapt with their own content. I’m going to talk about the timeline widget, which is more focussed on content creation by students than the other way around.
You create an editable timeline and share it with your students. This means that the students can add events to the timeline, write text and add images to it. Use this timeline in history class to let students simulate certain historical timelines. You can also let students add events to the timeline when working on projects or experiments in science courses. They could add pictures of each step of the experiment and write down an explanation.
So much fun!
Pro tip: Envato Elements
With an all-in-one Envato Elements subscription, students have everything they need to ace their assignments or freelance work; whether they’re looking for a breathtaking video template or to create an online presentation, Elements is here to push their creative boundaries. Members get unlimited downloads of 54+ million creative assets, and free access to Tuts+, their online learning platform.
So, that was it. And of course, there are much more content creation tools for students out there. I choose these particular apps because they give different possibilities and they approach content creation in various ways. Let your students create books, comics, videos, webinars, podcasts, timelines, blog posts, memes, presentations, infographics, and much more! Besides having the right apps, you have some creative new lesson ideas as well. Have fun!
I hope I inspired you to give the stage to your students once in a while. Don’t forget to share this post with fellow teachers. Thanks! 🙌