Monday, May 16, 2016

Using Pictello as a Followup Writing Activity

In a previous post I recommended conducting a writing activity as a followup to an Animated Step-by-Step project (recipe, craft, or science project). This involves  taking digital pictures of each step in an ASbyS project, then importing those images into a writing template.

An iPad app called Pictello (by AssistiveWare) is another great resource for adding a followup writing component to your ASbyS projects.  

The software is described as a ‘talking visual story creator’. The program sells for $19.99 … a relative bargain. Pictello is a great way to help students review the steps of the project they just performed. It provides a wonderful, experience-based writing opportunity and can provide the Speech-language Pathologist with an excellent vehicle for emphasizing verb tense.

Depicted below is Pictello page created as a followup to an ASbyS craft activity, Baggie Butterflies.  

Simply use your iPad to take digital photos of your students performing each step of  their ASbyS project. Later you will import these images into the Pictello app, ready to add a written caption. An onscreen keyboard is provided to facilitate the writing process.

You may also opt to use Photoshop or Photoshop Elements to add some symbol support to the images BEFORE importing them into Pictello. Although it does add an extra step, it is well worth the effort, if your students can benefit from symbol support.

The program allows you to use a natural voice or a digital voice when reading. Selection of the latter allows you to highlight each word as it is spoken (great for literacy). 

The program also allows you to add short video clips (up to 30 seconds which you can trim within the program). You can use the video clip audio or you can read the added caption using text-to-speech or recorded voice.

When the story is completed, you can create a .pdf of the story to send home or you can use the program’s dropbox link to share your story with other iPads possessing the Pictello app. For more information on how to use Pictello, check out these .pdf tutorials.

Pictello can be purchased from the apple app store.  

Happy writing!

…’til the next post …  (new posts every Monday)

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©2016 Carol Goossens’, Ph.D.
Augmentative Communication Consultant
Speech-Language Pathologist
Special Educator