Create Image Books

I've always liked sites that take images and enable you to do something interesting with them. Pim Pam Pum seems to be a company that is remarkably good at helping us to make the most of Flickr images, and I particularly like this little tool called Bookr.

Bookr enable us to create nice interactive image books with text captions.
Here's an example that I created based on the poem 'In White' by Robert Frost.

I found the words to the poem on Poem Hunter here: 'In White'
You can see the full size version here: In White by Robert Frost

The books are really simple to create, you just need to type in a key word to find the images you want and then drag them onto the pages and add your text.
Here's Bookr video tutorial to show you how easy it is.

  • You can download a higher quality (4.9Mb . mov) version here: Bookr Tutorial
  • You can download a version for iPod (5.6 Mb) here: Bookr Tutorial
So how can we use this with our students?
  • Poems - Like my example above, you can get students to illustrate poems, by typing in the words and picking an image for each of the key words in the text. If you have pairs of students illustrating the same poem they could justify their choice of image and how they felt it linked to the poem. If students illustrate different poems you could collect them together on a blog or webpage as a kind of poetry carnival and even choose the best ones.
  • Jokes and Songs - The ideas above would probably work just as well with jokes or song lyrics too.

    - A good place to look for child friendly jokes is Yahoo Kids Jokes and for more adult jokes try 101 Fun Jokes (choose with care)
    - Two places you can find song lyrics are and Lyrics Search Engine.
  • Grammar Examples - You can get students to create books of personalised sentences based on various grammar structures.

    - For present perfect you could ask students to create 'experience books' with images of places they have been and things they have done.
    - They could create their future plans book with illustrations of things they are 'going to' do, things they 'will have done by ... ' etc.
    - They could create conditionals books with an image to illustrate each clause of the conditional
  • Narrative and story telling - Students could pick some images and then tell a story about them in their book. You could do this a few different ways:

    - You could try give the students ten keywords, they find images to match the words then create a story linking them all together.
    - You could search out the images yourself then ask the students to write the text for them. (You can do this by publishing an image book, then get the students to open the book and click on the 'Recycle' button. They will then be able to edit the book and save their own version.
    - You could also create a blank book with your own text in and ask the students to read and select images for the text (Again you do this by creating a book and then the students click 'Recycle' to edit their own version).
  • Matching text to image - You can create your own image and text matching exercises by creating a book with images and the descriptive sentences on the wrong pages. Students would have to cut and paste the sentences in to the correct pages.
  • Error correction - Select some images and write some text to describe each image, but include some mistakes (Errors in the description rather than the grammar - e.g. blue flower when the image is of a blue moth etc.). Ask your students to correct the mistakes.
  • Personal information book - Students could create a book to illustrate things about themselves such as hobbies, interests, favourite singers etc. (Make sure they don't include location or contact information)
  • Favourite things - They could create a book describing some of their favourite things, a bit like the song (Rain drops on roses etc.)
  • Hobby book - They could create books to illustrate information about favourite hobbies or sports which they enjoy, like a guide to basketball (Including images of all the equipment etc.) or skateboarding.
  • Scrap book - They could create a scrap book using images to illustrate a trip or holiday they went on. This could be even more effective if they have their own Flickr account as they could actually use their own images from their holiday.
What's good about Bookr?
  • It's free and very easy to use.
  • Gives students access to loads of images
  • You can pull in images from your own Flickr account if you have one.
  • Great that you can embed the books into blogs or webpages.
  • Really nice way to personalise and add creativity to classes.
  • Students have a really nice product at the end of their work.
  • Students don't need to register or part with any personal information
  • I like the way the pages turn!
What I'm not so sure about
  • Be careful with younger learners, some images may be inappropriate
  • It's a shame that the text is quite small and doesn't show up so well on the embedded version of the book.
  • Would be nice to be able to print the books up.
  • All published books are public
I've really enjoyed playing with Bookr and exploring some of the creative possibilities and it's a tool that I'm sure I will use in the future. Hope you enjoy it and by all means add a comment if you want to share other ideas or materials you have created with it.