Creating Stories with Adobe Spark! - Part 1

Storytelling is a large part of many cultures around the world. Take for example Hula. In reading about storytelling I did not know this but traditional hula dancers do not dance to the rhythm of a beat, but to language, chants, or songs. Storytellers in ancient Sicily known as cuntisti, performed stories called a cunto. It was a form of street storytelling alternating between song and spoken verse. Telling stories is still a part of our make up and with new technologies at our fingertips, creating and sharing stories has taken on a new form.

What I mean by new form is that storytelling has become widely available for all to do via technology. There are so many apps and web tools available; choosing which ones to use and how to use is not easy. With that, I am launching a new blog series, Creating Stories with Adobe Spark! - Part 1. Welcome to the blog series!

What is Adobe Spark Video?

If you haven’t had the chance to see what Adobe Spark Video is, you are missing out! Turn your stories into narrated videos in just a few minutes. Create animated videos like the following:

These are a few examples of what you and students can do with Adobe Spark Video. Choose from the many story guides or create one from scratch. You can use your own images or choose from thousands of free images.

There are several options to using Adobe Spark Video. There's a free web app (spark.adobe.com) available on Windows and Macs, as well as on Chromebooks. In addition, you can use Adobe Spark Video on iOS devices (iPhone and iPad). Both web and iOS apps have the same functionality with the difference being the format. First thing you will need to do is create an account (free).

Word About Accounts

Spark Video is being used by many students in K-12 and in higher ed. In regards to setting up accounts, Adobe Spark apps are rated age 12+. Adobe recommends that teachers or parents install and setup apps, including creating an account. For classrooms with students under age 12, you can create a class Adobe account and all students can login using that same account. There will be some obvious best practices so that students are not editing each others. For example, each project name could start with their name like this, Johnny Doe Lion Story.

Setting Up Account

To begin, click on the yellow “Start now for free” button in the web app or launch the app on device to create an account. Sign up using Facebook, Google, or your any other email.

Web app version (left) iOS version (right)
On both the web app and iOS app, look for the red plus sign to begin creating. After clicking/tapping on it, you’ll be asked to enter a title or idea. Don’t worry if you don’t have one yet. You can skip this part and come name your project later.

Story Guides

  • Promote an Idea - Move your audience to action. Students can use this guide to create persuasive stories.
  • Tell What Happened - Share an experience. Students can use this guide to share what happened on a field trip. Use it to celebrate classroom success stories.
  • A Hero’s Journey - Talk about overcoming. Students can use this guide to to share how characters in stories overcame challenges.
  • Show and Tell - A twist on traditional speeches. Students can share their collections, talk about their passions, etc.
  • Personal Growth - Share how they changed. Students can share story about how something impacted them to change their perspective.
  • Teach a Lesson - Teach your audience. Students can create videos to help others learn how to code, build a bike ramp, draw, play a game, etc.
  • An Invitation - Build excitement about an event. Students can use this to invite parents to back to school night, promote classroom trips, art shows, etc.

Each story guide has a predetermined number of slides along with a prompt to help you along the way.You can easily add more slides by clicking on the plus sign and remove slides by selecting a slide and choosing delete from the popup menu. Creating a story from scratch will allow you to control the number of slides in your video. From scratch will not include prompts as found in the story guides. That is left up to your imagination!

To help you create animated stories, Adobe Spark Video has three categories to choose from themes, music, and layout. Do not worry, you can swap them later if you decide to change your mind.
Depending on the layout you choose, you can either add video, text, photo, or icons. You do have option to add images and icons tagged as Creative Commons-licensed via search in the app
When story is finished now it's time to share it. If you are using the web version, click on Share. If you are on the iOS device, tap the share icon (upper-right corner). Choose whether to share on social media or save it to a hard-drive to save it later to a cloud storage (Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.)

Adobe Spark Video is a great tool to use in the classroom! You and your students can make stories come to life with animated videos. Use your own videos and images or choose from over thousands of Creative Commons-licensed images and icons to add to your story. Add your voice to the story to create a stunning and engaging video.

Thanks for stopping by for the first installment of Creating Stories with Adobe Spark - Part 1. Interested in learning about creating webpages like this one? Want to learn how to make graphics similar to ones found in this post? Next two parts will cover Adobe Spark Post and Page. Until then, let's stay connected!
Created By
Claudio Zavala
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All Photos by taken by Claudio Zavala

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