Bitstrips for Schools is a comic creation tool that allows students to create and share comic strips on any topic they choose. You may already be familiar with the original Bitstrips website and app; Bitstrips for Schools has many of the same capabilities for creating avatars and characters and putting them in comic strips, but with additional features that make it easy and safe for teachers and students to use in school.
Pricing: Varies (free trial offered)
Access: Signup required
How does it work?
On the Bistrips for Schools website, teachers create online “classrooms,” which students join with an access code chosen by the teacher. Teachers can see all of the characters and comics created by the students, thereby allowing them to track students’ progress and intervene if students are using the technology inappropriately. Students can share their finished comic strips to a classroom gallery, where their classmates can view and comment on their work. They can also download their comics as PDFs or image files, which they can then print for display in the classroom.
How can I use Bitstrips in my own classroom?
You and your students can use Bitstrips in almost any teaching and learning context. Here are some ideas for how you can use Bitstrips in your classroom:
- After setting up class rules and routines, have students create Bitstrips showing how to behave appropriately in class. This would work especially well in science classes, where safety routines are highly important.
- In language arts classes, have students create comic-strip versions of stories or novels they read, or come up with alternate endings, or retell stories from a different perspective.
- In history classes, have students create comic-strip versions of historical events, or biographies of important historical figures.
- In world language classes, students could use Bitstrips to show understanding of focus language structures, or appropriate linguistic and cultural interactions between people from different places.
- In schools or classes that emphasize character development, students can create Bitstrips modeling socially responsible behaviors.
- If you are interested in instilling a growth mindset in your students, you can have them use Bitstrips to show how they have developed their knowledge of a subject over time. For example, in math class, students could create comic strips showing how they came to understand certain concepts, such as division or probability.
- Teachers of any subject can create their own Bitstrips to present new material for students to interpret. The comic strips could replace or supplement lectures, readings, and videos. You could even leave the comic “unfinished” and have students “finish” the story in a way that makes sense to show their understanding.
In short, Bitstrips can add interest to your teaching by contextualizing content with images and storylines, as well as develop students’ creativity and technology literacy.
Feature image courtesy of Flickr, lmorchard.