Pictello App Poster Image

Pictello

(i)

 

Learning(i)

Make storybooks sing with your own photos and text.

What parents need to know

Ease of play

The story-building feature is surprisingly simple to use. You pull photos from your device's library, type in text, and pick a narration method. Newcomers can use the "Wizard" method that leads you through the process step by step, but veterans can use the quicker "Expert" method. The updated version now allows you to add videos to your stories. Additional features include different pronunciations, orientation support, different paper sizes, and the ability to add transitions and highlight text.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Pictello provides an easy way to create "social stories" from the images and videos in your device's photo library. Simply decide on a story topic with your child and choose the "Wizard" or "Expert" to guide you through the process. Know that your photo books can be shared through iTunes, Dropbox, or Pictello's universal server. You'll need to provide an email to join Pictello, but other users can only download your photo books if you give them a code.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • reading
  • speaking
  • storytelling
  • writing

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • decision-making
  • making conclusions
  • problem solving

Creativity

  • brainstorming
  • innovation

Self-Direction

  • self-reflection
  • motivation
  • personal growth
  • self-assessment

Emotional Development

  • handling stress
  • identifying emotions
  • labeling feelings
  • self-awareness

Communication

  • multiple forms of expression

Responsibility & Ethics

  • making wise decisions

Engagement, Approach, Support

Engagement

Kids will love to see and hear themselves. Within the settings, you can change everything from the voice, playback, authoring, interaction, appearance, and languages.

Learning Approach

Pictello integrates differentiated instruction using audio, visual, and a kinesthetic approach. Kids will feel empowered once they create and use a social story.  

Support

The app is very easy to use, and a "How to Write a Story" guide walks you through creating a story. Many options allow you to customize the experience to support a wide range of learners.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • reading
  • speaking
  • storytelling
  • writing

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • decision-making
  • making conclusions
  • problem solving

Creativity

  • brainstorming
  • innovation

Self-Direction

  • self-reflection
  • motivation
  • personal growth
  • self-assessment

Emotional Development

  • handling stress
  • identifying emotions
  • labeling feelings
  • self-awareness

Communication

  • multiple forms of expression

Responsibility & Ethics

  • making wise decisions

Kids can learn how to create stories that are relevant to their lives with Pictello. For example, they can express their likes and dislikes, communicate with others, and learn routines. What's nice is that these stories are, by nature, very specific and tailored to kids' lives. If your child is having trouble transitioning back to school or greeting adults, for instance, Pictello can be useful. In addition to self-expression, kids can learn a bit about the art of storytelling. More built-in prompts and examples would really benefit kids. Pictello is an imaginative tool that can help kids find their unique voice.

This Learning Rating review was written by Vicki Windman

Kids say

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What's it about?

PICTELLO is an interactive storytelling app that allows kids and their parents to make virtual storybooks with their own titles, photos, and captions. It should have appeal for all kids and parents, but it also should be especially useful for kids who have difficulty understanding social cues, reading facial expressions, and interpreting body language. A simple step-by-step tutorial guides users through the process of creating stories on their own. Different options for how text and pictures are read or uploaded support different types of learners. For example, the voice quality, rate, and pronunciation can be modified; audio can be created using text-to-speech, recording one's own voice, or selecting a computerized voice; and text can be highlighted as it's read. A library of sample stories, although small, can help fuel the creative process. Note that stories within the library show kids who have learning difficulties and special needs as well as ones who don't.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

What better way for kids to feel empowered than by relating their own stories? Sure, the interface is a bit spare and the number of examples is thin. But the tutorial is clear, there are solid audio and visual supports, and it can be a fabulously fun way for parents and kids together to address the ups and downs of communication, friendship, and the daily grind. Pictello may be pricey, but it's a high-quality product that most families will make great use of. 

Families can talk about...

  • If your child is non-verbal, use your voice to record stories.

  • Take pictures and videos with your kid to help create relevant social stories of such things as daily routines.

  • Make stories to help kids with transitions such as going to the doctor or starting a new school.

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
Price:$18.99
Pricing structure:Paid
Release date:September 9, 2013
Category:Education
Size:302.00 MB
Publisher:AssistiveWare
Version:2.0
Minimum software requirements:iOS 5.1 or later

This review of Pictello was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent Written byBaffo February 3, 2012

Great idea, but not worth the $$$

Given how expensive (A$20) it is, the product was more rudimentary than I imagined (no editing of pictures, only photo illustrations, poor voicing) and the tech support (pdf files on the web) was good when eventually found but that wasn't easier. It was cool (and necessary) to record our own voice, but very tricky to find out how to share stories, and ULTRA disappointing to discover the carefully crafted story could only be shared with voicing if the intended recipients also forked out $$$ for Pictello! It could be emailed as a pdf file, but that was small consolation after she'd spent so long recording her voice for distant family too.
What other families should know
Educational value
Parent of an infant, 3, 5, and 8 year old Written byTaximom4four February 3, 2014
LEARNING

TO EXPENSIVE!

I was disappointed to see that the app did not offer more based on the price. It is pretty basic and I actually have other storybook apps that were cheaper and work better. Look at iStorymaker or i Create Social Skills Stories both were much cheaper and have more editing options. Will continue to use the others that I owned.
What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Parent Written byDebbCall June 16, 2014
LEARNING

Pictello

We have been using Pictello for over a year now and I just love it. I am so IT clueless but this app is so so easy to use. It has 2 options that can guide you through every step of making a story. Photos are easily imported from your camera roll. I find it so easy to use that I often make a story whilst on the go eg; if I need to make a story about shopping I can just open Pictello take a photo and add the text. easy as 1,2,3, I Have used Pictello for making many memory books as my child is non-verbal, we have made social stories that have helped in many occasions. I give Pictello 10/10
What other families should know
Easy to play/use

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