Saturday, July 6, 2019

Mapping Books

Yesterday I published a post about creating multimedia timelines as an alternative form of a book report. Later in the day I was walked past the little book store next to my favorite coffee shop and saw a copy of Louise Dickinson Rich's book, We Took to the Woods. This is a classic in the catalog of Maine literature.

We Took to the Woods is the story of Rich and her husband moving to small cabin in along the Rapid River in western Maine in the 1930's. Throughout the book Rich explains the difficulty and, occasionally, the fun of creating a life in woods long before the days of going on Amazon and having anything you need show up at your door the next day. Some of my favorite parts of her story include traveling to and from their home.

Seeing We Took to the Woods in the window of the book store got me to thinking about how creating a multimedia map could be a good way for students to summarize books like it that have a heavy emphasis on location. StoryMap JS is a free tool that students can use to create a multimedia map combined with a timeline. Students could use this tool to explain the significance of locations while also highlighting the sequence of key events in the story. The following video provides a demonstration of how to use StoryMap JS.

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