Tech 101

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The Language Arts Issue

April 2014

Boise School District librarians offer this monthly newsletter to provide tips and information about some of the digital resources available to both teachers and students. For listings of more English resources, be sure to check the 'Websites by Subject" for either elementary or secondary students that is found at the District Library Portal.

All of these programs and tools are available at the Boise Schools Library Portal Page or on individual school library websites.

Quote of the Month

“Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. ”

― Groucho Marx

For more Groucho philosophy on parenting, click here.

Animators: Moovly

Use Moovly to create:

  • Animated Videos: Add voice, sound and music and synchronize everything using the simple timeline interface. Publish your video on YouTube, Facebook, put it on your website or download it for offline use.
  • Presentations 3.0: Forget about slides. Focus on your subject and add the visuals in a compelling sequence supported by attractive transitions and animations that hold the attention of your audience.
  • Display Ads: Attract attention with motion: create your own banner, skyscraper or other animated display ads for your own or other websites.
What is Moovly?


TumbleBooks are ebooks with audio for kids. Children can read along, or just have the book read to them. All books play directly in your internet browser window, so there is no software or files to download to your computer. Teachers and students can also access, videos, quizzes, common core book suggestions and lesson plans.

For TumbleBooks aimed at secondary students, check out TumbleBook Cloud.

Check out the video below for a tour of the new TumbleBook Library.
TumbleBookLibrary Tour


NoveList K-8 is a database about books specifically for younger readers. It helps kids find books that are just right for their reading level and interests. Parents, teachers, and librarians can also find tools to teach with books and engage young readers.

NoveList for secondary students, turns your existing catalog into a place for book discovery, adding reader-focused features such as reading recommendations, series information, book reviews, book jackets, and more.

For tutorials on using NoveList, click here. is an easy-to-use website that adds a multimedia dimension to the reading experiences of children's and young adult books. Their online database is developed and maintained to include thousands of resources, including common core alignment, about fiction and nonfiction books used in the K–12 environment, with every resource selected to encourage the integration of multimedia author and book materials into reading and library activities.
Introduction / Overview Tour of

Reading & Grammar: Martha Speaks Story Maker

Write your own pocket-sized adventures with Martha! Then, play with the characters in your storybook while Martha reads. Or, play in the balloon-popping Wordbone Zone. Martha Speaks Story Maker is like having an adventure with Martha wherever you go.

With Martha Speaks Story Maker you can make eight different interactive stories with Martha, who reads the story you’ve just made. Your stories will be saved in your own private library to re-read with Martha anytime you like. You can also test out all the new vocabulary you’ve heard in your stories!

Announcements: How to Make Them Really Pop

The announcements tool on your Fusion page is a really easy way to provide quick and useful information to your students and parents. But what happens when the important stuff gets lost in the mix? Check out the video linked below to find creative and easy ways to make your announcements really jump off the screen.