Mandy Froehlich talks about a tool she uses in her classroom, Flipsnack. Learn how she uses this tool.
Below is an enhanced transcript, modified for your reading pleasure. For guests and hyperlinks to resources, scroll down
Flipsnack: A fun way to make interactive online magazines #edtech
From Audio File 182-Mandy-Froelich
Vicki: Happy EdTech Tool Tuesday. Today we are talking to Mandy Froelich about Flipsnack.
Mandy what is Flipsnack?
What is Flipsnack?
Mandy: So, Flipsnack is one of the lesser known tools that I love to introduce to people because people just take to it and they absolutely love it. It is an interactive flipbook creator. So, if you can imagine reading a book on Kindle, the finished product you can actually flip through like a book.
Only the … the difference between just a regular book and Flipsnack is that you can actually make the book interactive. So you can put in things like video, and the video can be videos taken from YouTube so the video can actually be created by somebody else. The students or the teachers or whatever. And you can put in images and voice recordings, and texts, and shapes, and you can really make the book more than just something that you read and make it interactive.
It’s just an absolutely fantastic tool from a student, content and also from a teacher standpoint. My recommendation is always to get the Flipsnack.edu version. You get most of the pro features for free but it is limited to a class of ten students.
And the one thing that Flipsnack cannot do it … it cannot be worked on simultaneously like Google docs where two students can work on it at once. But, one of the other benefits of Flipsnack is that you can create the books in something like Google Slides. So it is collaborative …download them and then upload them into Flipsnack and it will also create your book.
Vicki: Cool, so it’s … you’re actually downloading a pdf, right?
Mandy: Yeah, right. You’re downloading to pdf, so there are some limitations. Like your videos, you have to later go into Flipsnack and put your videos in but the basic content can be created in slides and then uploaded as a pdf to Flipsnack.
Ways it is being used
Vicki: What are the some of the coolest ways you see Flipsnack used?
Mandy: Well for teacher use, I’ve seen it used for fliplearning.
So, entire units being created in a FlipSnack book and then being given to students so that they can work through the content at their own pace.
And then all the content and the videos and the images and links, they’re all in one spot for the kids to access.
I personally have used FlipSnack as a way of creating more interesting workshops instead of a powerpoint or Google Slides. I’ve seen it used as curating ideas into one book and then releasing that book to people so everybody has those ideas.
Also, people have used it to create, like we’ve had a summer technology institute, and we’ve created our schedules for that institute within FlipSnack and then shared the FlipSnack book out. We’ve used it that way for teachers but of course I think our focus should always be on student content creation.
Student Lesson Plan Ideas
And, I have seen it used in some really awesome ways. I think my absolute favorite way that I have seen it used is to use to create a newspaper that would have been given out on a specific day in history.
For example, the bombing of Pearl Harbor. What would the newspaper the next day look like when it was released? And if you want to take it even further, what would a newscast have looked like … record that newscast and then put that into what would be the interactive newspapers as well.
Or a radio show or whatever it is. Because you can do just the voice as well. I think that’s probably the coolest way I’ve seen it used.
I’ve also seen it used kind of in the same way as a sports magazine, it was a sports literature course that was using it. The students were creating the sports…like an ESPN type magazine in FlipSnack.
Vicki: So have you ever seen any mistakes? You said it’s not collaborative. What are the common mistakes that educators make when they’re trying to use FlipSnack?
Mandy: You know, it’s such an easy tool to use that I haven’t seen … I haven’t had an educator come back to me and say,“Ah I hated FlipSnack. You know, I did have an educator say to me once I like to use it for student portfolios. I don’t think that it’s probably the best tool for student portfolios. I think there are so many awesome tools out there for that, that would be better.
But, I think you could try it, and see how it worked. But, I have never had an educator come back to me and say oh I didn’t like FlipSnack for this purpose. It’s such a great tool that people really, really like it with their kids. Students absolutely love it.
Vicki: Cool. Ok, what where you going to say just a minute ago?
More Ideas for Flipsnack
Mandy: I was just going to give a couple more ideas. I’ve also seen it used as presenting a business and marketing plan for everything from graphical advertisements and kids making commercials and embedding that information. And then also from an elementary standpoint, I had a teacher use it in lieu of … she used to have her students write personal narratives and then they would bind the book together as a classroom set and put it in the library. And all the kids would look at it once and then nobody ever looked at it again. Parents couldn’t really look at it unless they were in the library for parent-teacher conferences or whatever. So she had her kids actually log into a shared account and write theirs in one of the FlipSnack books. And then they were able to produce that book and share it with parents, and grandparents, and embed it in their classroom website. It was a more authentic way to showcase the student work than just having it one spot in the library. So that was a great way from an elementary standpoint to use FlipSnack.
Vicki: Well, how did you find out FlipSnack?
Mandy: I think that I was touring a school one time and one of the teachers were talking to us about their one to one and just brought up FlipSnack as one of the tools that they used. I looked at it and loved it right away. And so I use it for quite a bit of PD and things like that and introduce it to teachers a lot. So, it was from another teacher that I’m pretty sure I heard about it.
Vicki: Ok, so how can a teacher get started with FlipSnack without getting overwhelmed?
How to get started
Mandy: Ok, so again if a teacher goes to sign up for FlipSnack they need to make sure that they sign up for the edu account. The .edu account is a little bit buried in the website. It’s best if you scroll all the way down to the bottom and there’s an .edu option and that brings you right to that part of the website. So, sign up for the .edu account. The one thing that I’ve heard about signing up for the .edu account is that sometimes it takes twenty-four hours for some of the pro features to be free in the.edu account. I have run into some teachers where immediately they would contact me and say ah some of those features aren’t free. But it actually took a little while for the account to become that free pro account. So give it a day if it looks like some of those aren’t free. But, the user interface is very, very, user-friendly. It’s drag and drop. All of the options are across the top like a toolbar where you can access the videos and the tags and you have access to both a bank of video and images as well as Google images as well as things you want to upload. Along the bottom, it has all your pages and it looks like another other kind of presentation type software you have used. So it looks like Google slides where you can see each of the slides and then it takes it and puts it into a book. So once you get the account up and you create a book, everything that you do is drag and drop into what looks like any other kind of presentation. And then it puts it all together as a book. The most difficult thing is to remember that your pages, like your front pages are first, it’s a lone page. And every page after that is connected in the middle. So every two pages go together. Once you get …once you understand that you can get kids to understand that. Then they can visualize how the book is going together a little bit better. Otherwise, it’s very drag and drop; very simple to use.
Vicki: So, check the Shownotes, I’ll make sure to link to the .edu account. Mandy Froelich has really given us a fantastic tool for EdTechToolTuesday ! So, get out there, innovate like a turtle, and try something new this week. Try FlipSnack!
Transcribed by Lisa Durff
Bio as submitted
Mandy Froehlich is the Director of Innovation and Technology for the Ripon Area School District in Ripon, Wisconsin where she supports and encourages educators to create innovative change in their classrooms. In addition, Mandy supports professional learning as Director of the Collaborate, Inspire & Innovate Conference in Ripon, WI, as well as her Organizer and Public Relations Coordinator roles for edCamp Oshkosh in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. She consults with school districts around the state in the effective use of technology to support great teaching, as a Google for Education Certified Trainer, and has presented on similar topics at conferences such as Midwest Google Summit, TIES in Minnesota, and ISTE. Currently, one of her favorite projects includes the NEW IT Alliance Committee which works with IT professionals in the public and private sectors to create a focus on future IT careers for students.
|Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored podcast episode.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via cash payment, gift, or something else of value to include a reference to their product. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe will be good for my readers and are from companies I can recommend. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.) This company has no impact on the editorial content of the show.
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