Book Trailers

external image book-trailers-web3.jpg






What resources will you need to recreate this project in your classroom?

Each student will need their own computer with access to the Internet for two 45 minute periods. If students are using Animoto for their book trailer, an iPhone or iPod Touch can be used with the Animoto App.

A description of the project my students completed:

Students created a small photo slide show called a book trailer to "advertise " their book to other readers. The trailer would be similar to a movie trailer or preview, where only enough information is given to get an idea of what the book is about without giving away the entire story. Students would combine images saved from the internet, small amounts of text, and music to build their book trailer. In the project that we completed, students were given the choice of using two different tools to build their trailer with : PhotoStory or Animoto. PhotoStory is for Windows computers and is a free program. It allows you to build a photo slide show with customized motion and text. Animoto is a web 2.0 tool that allows you to create photo slide shows too. Students need to create an account ( requires email ) which is limited to a 30 second video. Teachers can sign up for a free educator account good for several months which allows students to upgrade thier accounts ( details in the additional resources section ) .

What advanced preparation was necessary for my students to complete this project?

Students had to read a book that they would complete their book trailer on. To maximize the effectiveness of our computer lab time, students had to complete the Book Trailer Planner Sheet. . The planning sheet is basically a storyboard, so that students would know which images to search for to build their project. The teacher would also need to create Animoto accounts for any students planning on using Animoto instead of PhotoStory. Information on this process can be found in the additional resources.

How did you assess this project?

A rubric was used to assess the project. I had used Rubistar to create the rubric. A copy of the rubric we used is available here :

What was the timeline for the completion of this project?

Three 45 minute periods were spent in the computer lab:
  • Day 1 - Search and save images.
  • Day 2 - Build book trailer.
  • Day 3 - Gallery Walk. Rotate to other computers and view trailers from peers. Leave feedback on comment sheet at the computer.

Student work samples:


Example created using PhotoStory: Disguises



Example created using Animoto : Cell



Things to Consider


Students may struggle with the idea of creating a trailer - giving info to generate interest without giving away the story

Find or create an example to show your students

Use the planning sheet to help your students get done. That way, when they get to a computer, they know what they need to find and type !

Have a definite deadline - students can waste time looking for pics

Additional Resources:



PhotoStory 3 download - for Windows only. Does not work on Mac ( use iMovie instead ) .
link to apply for Animoto for Education account - you must first have an Animoto account before going to this link !

Animoto account preparation:

An educator account provides a teacher with 50 codes for classroom use. The codes are good for 180 days. Each student would need their own Animoto account. Once they create their account, they enter in your promo code to get an upgrade to a Pro account ( videos longer than 30 seconds ) .

If students do not have email, you can create accounts using the gmail + trick . This involves using a gmail account of your own and placing a + sign in the address.

Example : I create a gmail account called sengiascience@gmail.com . I create Animoto accounts using the following emails: sengiascience+1@gmail.com, sengiascience+2@gmail.com, etc. The + sign and the number are ignored when mail is delivered, but the + sign and number can be used for usernames when signing up for a web tool like Animoto.