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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Create Geo-located Comic Stories With Google Earth and Storyboard That

Disclosure: Storyboard That is an advertiser on Free Technology for Teachers.

Creating digital stories is one of my favorite uses of Google Earth and Google Maps in the classroom. In the past I've written about Google Lit Trips. I've also written about having students use Google Maps to tell a story about historical events. Last night I had a conversation with the developer of Storyboard That, Aaron Sherman. Aaron and I talked about the idea of using Storyboard That develop a comic story that is displayed in a Google Earth tour.

Storyboard That provides templates in which you can create your stories in a comic strip style. To help you create your story Storyboard That provides dozens of scenes, characters, and text bubbles to fill your storyboard's frames. Each element that you drag into your storyboard's frames can be re-sized, rotated, and re-positioned to your heart's content. Your completed storyboard can be saved as a comic strip, saved as a set of images (one image for each frame), or saved as a set of PPTX slides. Saving as images is the option to use if you want to use your comic strip's frames in Google Earth or Google Maps placemarks.

After saving your Storyboard That images then create your placemarks in Google Earth, Google Earth Tour Builder, or Google Maps Engine Lite. Add your Storyboard That images to your placemarks. If you use Google Earth for this activity you can record audio narration for your tour. Click here for directions on using Google Earth. Click here for directions on Google Earth Tour Builder. Click here for directions on Google Maps Engine Lite.

Applications for Education
Consider combining the ideas of Google Lit Trips with the idea of creating comics to write book summaries or book endorsements. After students have created their book summaries through Storyboard That they can then drop their comic images into Google Earth to create a comic Google Lit Trip.