Adobe launched a new free iPad app today called Adobe Voice, and it has great potential for the classroom due to the way that it lets you effortlessly create digital stories, explanations, or stylish presentations by adding your voice to a variety of images.
Adobe Voice has several great features for teachers who may be wanting to use this in their classroom. For instance, Adobe has included a wide variety of searchable images and icons that students can use in their projects. This saves having to worry about finding images online because they are all there inside the app. Better still, as model of good digital citizenship, they are all cited correctly as sources in the credits.
When you first create a project, you get prompted to choose the type of story you want to tell. Why would this matter? The app gives prompts at each step of the way in order to help encourage you to develop a well structured tale. Here’s an example of what you will see if you choose the Hero’s Quest template:
- Tell us about the hero and their world before the quest begins.
- What happens that causes the hero to undertake their quest.
- Show the trials or challenges that the hero encounters along the way.
- Show how our hero overcomes the odds and accomplishes their goal.
- Tell us how the world is better now.
Of course, these prompts are optional, but the fact that they are there as a scaffold for students is a nice touch, and the prompts vary for each template you choose.
To record your voice over an image, simply press and hold the microphone. However, Adobe takes your recording a step further than most and processes it in the app to optimize it for clarity and quality. There are a number of layouts for each slide, as well as themes to give your story some style and animation. A library of music is also included to add personality to your project. Each track is divided up into themes or musical genres.
When your story is done it will be played back as a continuous video and you can share it via social media, email, iMessage, or simply copy the link. However, and this is maybe the only downside to the app from an educator’s point of view, you need an Adobe account in order to do any of these things. This means that it will be hard, if not impossible, to use this app in an elementary classroom because of the 13+ age restriction on Adobe accounts.
With any luck, Adobe will decide include the ability to save to the iPad’s camera roll in a future update. If they do that, they will have a guaranteed winner on their hands, and an app that will surely be a must-have app for all iPad classrooms.
If you are looking for an app that does a similar thing to Adobe Voice, and will actually save to the iPad camera roll, take a look at ShadowPuppet or 30Hands. They don’t quite have the style or flair of Adobe Voice, but they are great apps in their own right, and both are also free to download.