Sunday, November 15, 2015

Booktrack Classroom- Add Music and Sound Effects to Your E-Books or Writing

I enjoy reading because it is free of the extraneous noise and images.  With a good book, my imagination is free to envision the setting, sounds, and characters.  So, it may seem odd that I am writing about Booktrack Classroom, a site and app that incorporates music and sound into e-books to "enhance" the reading experience.  Although I can't envision reading a book that includes a soundtrack, I can see valuable use of this site in teaching the writing process and writing for an audience.

Booktrack Classroom allows teachers to set up accounts for their students where the teacher and students can read and edit Booktracks for classic book titles (in public domain) such as The Wizard of Oz with other titles being added as authors allow.  Teachers and students can also write or past in their own text to create a personal Booktrack.  It is the section where students can write and edit their own work that I find most useful.  Think about the following examples and how adding music or sound effects could help students understand the concepts:

1.  Learning about imagery as a literary element.
2.  Learning how the mood and tone of writing can bring an emotional perspective to the writing.
3.  What is an onomatopoeia?
4.  How do descriptive words help us to better understand the setting or a character.

Booktrack Classroom is easy to use.  Simply choose a book, type, or paste your text.  Then select sentences, paragraphs or sections of the text and search for music, ambient sound, or sound effects to go with each section chosen.  You can also upload you own sounds.  Then publish to read in your online or app reader on your device.

Thanks to my friend Steve Dembo for introducing me to Booktrack Classroom on a recent webcast, Survey Says, Mash It Up! through Discovery Education.


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