JUNCTION CITY — Names of stories and characters aren’t the only twists in the fractured fairytales created by fifth-graders at Junction City Elementary School.
“Crystal White,” “The Three Little Deer” and “Lilly and the Cornstalk” also ditched their storybook homes and found new digs in an iPad.
About 60 fifth-graders wrote, animated and narrated their own versions of classic tales on Apple’s premier tablet and presented their creations to parents, peers and staff Monday.
Using an application called Story Kit, the students spent weeks drawing, taking pictures, typing text and recording voices to bring their plots to life with iPads, teacher Brittany Godbey said.
“It makes them more excited about learning, and they’re more excited about writing because they know they’ll get to use the iPads in the end,” she said.
Katelyn Osborne penned a revamped version of “Jack and the Beanstalk” with a female heroine and an amiable giant before discovering her favorite part of the iPad project — “recording my own voice.”
Likewise, Carlea Denson wrote “The True Story of Jack and the Beanstalk” — in which the giant descends to earth — then painted pictures on the iPad and used its camera to capture drawings she’d done on paper.
Godbey said all of the students quickly caught on to the technology and selected the features they felt best livened their tales.
“It’s been really good,” she said. “They’re actually better at it than I am.”
Vicki Wesley said she felt similarly after viewing her daughter Hannah’s iPad presentation of “The Three Little Deer.”
“It was amazing to see, and I just think it’s wonderful that they have the opportunities to work with this technology,” she said. “I think it would make it more fun than just writing on paper. It would for me.”
Boyle County school officials agree. The Board of Education recently initiated a plan to provide one-to-one technology to all students in kindergarten though 12th grades during the next three years, Superintendent Mike LaFavers said. By the summer of 2014, the district hopes to have either a laptop, iPad or new technological device for every student.
Boyle schools currently are in the pilot phase of the technology integration, during which the district has provided iPad grants for interested teachers and schools. Fifth-graders were one of the pilot groups at Junction City Elementary, and LaFavers said he is thrilled with their work.
“We’ve got this stuff going on all over the district, and how teachers are using these tools to engage students is just amazing,” he said. “We think that it’s going to transform things. We think this will eventually be your textbook.”
But, for now, iPads at Junction City Elementary are storybooks, and Godbey said that’s enough to ready her students for the modern world ahead of them.
“With something hands on, they really learn better this way,” she said. “They’re just going to be so much more prepared for the technology that’s available to them.”