Creating Audio Book Reviews with Chirbit

Creating a Chirbit 
The middle school English teachers and I are always trying to encourage the students to have a book that they enjoy reading at hand. We want them to find what they like to read. That may mean finding an author who speaks to them so that they want to read everything by the author or finding a genre that speaks to them so that they can find books with similar themes. One of the sixth grade girls has gone dragon crazy and is trying to read everything that I have related to dragons in both fiction and non-fiction. She is a big reader and will probably run out of books in the PFTSTA Library pretty soon. To inspire the students to find books that excite them, the 6th grade teachers and I cooked up an activity that would motivate the students to read and provide book advertising in the library, too. 

Student is listening to a book talk captured with a QR code on the iPod
Each student in the class was asked to read a book that they liked and create a book talk that describes the plot and recommends the story to other readers. When read aloud, each book talk was to be 90 seconds or less. The students used the tech tool Chirbit to record their talks. I chose Chirbit because the interface is easy to use, and once recorded, a QR code and URL is generated for each Chirbit that a student creates. It was suppose to be easy to do. Unfortunately, the reality was that it took weeks and weeks for two classes to get their talks recorded.

The students read their book and then wrote out the book talk. The teacher read and then approved the talk when she thought it was ready to be recorded. To record, the students had to spread out around school so that they could find a quiet place (that was not always easy). We had stduents in closets, my office and the teacher workroom. The students' laptops are not the newest, and many of the laptops did not play nice with Chirbit. So students had to either use one of the desktops in the library or an extra laptop from the library. Once the recording was done, the students sent the link and QR codes to the teacher and myself. I printed the QR codes on cards and displayed them with the books on the library shelves. The students can use their own device or use a library iPod to scan the code and listen to the review. 

I have some examples for you to hear below. 

Kaitlyn Esneault read The Kane Chronicles series
by Rick Riordan. You can find her book talk here:

Victoria Mordica read Girl 15 Charming but Insane by Sue Limb. You can find her book talk here:

Ahmed Farhoud read Among the Impostors by Margret Peterson Haddix. You can listen to his book talk here: Books by the author, Margaret Peterson Haddix, were popular with the 6th graders because she, visited PFTSTA in September.



  1. Elizabeth,
    What did you use to attach your QR codes to the books that were on display?

  2. I bought a variety of clip-on sign holders from Demco. They make several styles, and I bought a variety. This is one of them: I clip them on the shelves, bookends or display easels. It works very well. They cost less than a two dollars. I have at least a dozen if not more.


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