What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that StoryJumper is a charming and easy-to-use tool that gives kids a template to create their own short children's books. Very young kids might need some help with the text, but they'll do fine with the illustrations, created by dragging and dropping a series of images onto the page. StoryJumper would make a fun after-school activity, as it's almost game-like, and kids can get into creating virtual environments featuring the characters they've brought to life. Parents should also be aware that while there aren't any ads on the site, it does push for printed versions of created stories made at a specific price.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
Thinking & Reasoning
- thinking critically
- making new creations
- producing new content
- work to achieve goals
- multiple forms of expression
- using and applying technology
- digital creation
Engagement, Approach, Support
StoryJumper has an organized system that minimizes frustration and really activates imaginations. The speedy process will be satisfying to impatient kids, and a finished story will hopefully inspire them to write another.
With this tool, learning comes by doing. StoryJumper allows kids to experiment and make changes at any time. A printable worksheet is also available to keep kids on track and introduce them to a classic writing process.
StoryStarter includes all kinds of prompts that will help kids get their imaginations rolling. Once kids start creating the book, there's a green help button on each page and instructional video tutorials.
What's it about?
STORYJUMPER lets kids create and publish their own illustrated stories. Whether beginning writers or seasoned pros, StoryJumper provides an outlet for kids to use their imaginations as well as learn some real writing strategy if they're ready for it. The simple interface lets kids illustrate one page using a drag and drop graphics system while adding their own text onto the facing page. When kids are finished, they can publish their story as viewable to public, private, or friends and family only on the StoryJumper site. They also have the option of purchasing a hardcover version for $24.95.
Is it any good?
This creative writing site works for a wide age range; little kids will love just playing around with the graphics, and older kids can construct a more advanced story using the advice provided in the StoryStarter section of the site. Putting together the illustrations is almost more fun than the actual writing; the graphic options are incredibly detailed and very fun to explore. StoryJumper also includes some nice little touches; for example, when you turn pages, it makes a papery "whoosh" sound to approximate a real book. Kids will also have the option to share their books with friends and family, while also searching through a publicly available library of books from other users. But the instructional info on StoryJumper isn't quite simple enough for younger kids. Parents will have to provide hands-on support to help some through the creation process, as well as if they choose to make their story into a physical copy. But for budding writers looking for a way to bring their ideas to life, StoryJumper is an excellent writing tool.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about reading books. When you read books, what story elements do you notice, like character and plot? What qualities make the main character special? What changed in the story from beginning to end?
Kids could start a series of books starring their favorite protagonist. What makes this character so interesting and important for the story?
Bring the whole family in on the story-writing. Try an "exquisite corpse" activity, in which each member of the family writes a page after seeing only the page before it, and so on. This always results in wacky fun.