Foster a Life-Long Love of Stories with Storybird

Simply put, Storybird uses beautiful images to inspire students to write.  Choose one of three formats: picture book, long-form, and poetry. With the picture book format, choose images from Storybird’s enormous image library. By arranging these pictures thoughtfully, a story forms. 

The poetry format allows students to drag and drop words anywhere onto Storybird’s artwork. This encourages students to draw connections between words, images, and the emotion that both evoke in tandem. Finally, long-form allows students to really push their writing skills. While Storybird’s image library provides creative scaffolding, students may use an image to write a chapter that is thousands of words long, which in turn may be tied to other chapters to form a whole book.

Storybird Studio was made to be teacher-friendly.  You can onboard your students, assign projects, and review their work all in one secure place.  The feature that really sets Storybird apart, however, is its fundraising capability. Storybird will actually professionally print and bind your students’ stories for parents to buy, and 30 percent of the profits will go right back into your classroom.

Getting Started

You can sign up for Storybird, for free, right here.

Incorporate Storybird into your next lesson plan:

  • Use Storybird’s image library to create a story skeleton and teach students about fundamental plot elements (rising action, climax, falling action, denouement, etc.)
  • Make poetry more fun and accessible by using Storybird’s poetry form
  • Encourage creativity and a life-long love of stories by encouraging your students to share their creations with the class

Art Teacher Honored for Fostering Thinking and Creativity

Amy LangeAmy Lange was named the 2012-2013 Shelby County Schools High School Teacher of the Year. This Millington Central High art teacher inspires her students to be successful in art, as well as their core academic classes” (Source).

I’m enjoying working with Amy as her doctoral advisor and I’m impressed with her abilities to foster creativity. Amy is currently involved in a deep investigation of some of the work from Project Zero at Harvard University (Making Thinking Visible, Artful Thinking, Teaching for Understanding, and the Future of Learning). She and I are beginning to collaborate on the development of teaching materials, professional development workshops, and other resources centered around these ideas. Watch for more about this in the future.

For now, enjoy this video that highlights some of the outstanding work that Amy does to promote thinking, learning, and creativity.

Event Tags: #pzc2013 #hgsepzfol

Series: UM IDT Student Spotlight

Developing Young Authors with Storybird

Storybirds are short, art-inspired stories you make to share, read, and print. It is a fun, collaborative, storytelling website that can be an effective resource for teaching parts of a story, the writing process, promoting creativity, and more. Storybird also seamlessly keeps a portfolio of each student’s writing development.

Below are my slides from this workshop. All the workshop materials and resources (including a video tutorial, additional examples, notes, etc.) are available on my wiki, Learning Telecollaboratively.

View more Presentations from Clif Mims
Example Storybirds

Halloween Brothers on Storybird


You’re Mootiful on Storybird

10 Best Uses for the Internet in Art Education

I recently discovered the following ToonDoo created by Angela Christopher and thought it was certainly worth sharing. I’m also pleased to mention that Angela is a doctoral student in our IDT program.

For Discussion

What additional uses would you suggest for those integrating the Internet with art education?

Wordles of Every Inaugaration Speech [Video and Gallery]

Governing Dynamo has developed a gallery of all 56 American presidential inaugural addresses that includes full transcripts, Wordles (word cloud visualizations) and video footage. The video below can be a useful way to navigate through the gallery. Click on the glowing green dots in the video to learn more about an inaugural address.