g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
News & Politics
Religion & Spirituality
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

Bored? Games!
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

Autism Spectrum Disorders
Mental Health
Blogs / Social Networking
Kidney Disease
Today in History

All times in EST

Full Schedule
g Flash and Animation Site

BellaOnline's Flash and Animation Editor


Text to Speech for Educational Apps

You might already know that your Mac has a text-to-speech feature. Many children’s educational app developers have used this feature to create the audio for their apps. This is a great way to let your app talk to the user. For example, a child might use the drag and drop feature to assemble the letters of a word. When the child correctly assembles the word, an audio file would play the pronunciation of the word as well as the individual letters that make up that word.

Of course, if you or a friend have a great voice and a great microphone, you can record the audio for the letters and words. But, if you are like me, you don’t have a setup for creating professional audio soundtracks. A second option is to use the text-to-speech feature on your MacR to create the audio files. Here are the steps for Mac OS X.


TextEdit is your Mac’s basic word processor and has the built-in text-to-speech feature. To use the feature, first add the text you wish to “hear” into the editor window.

  1. Select the text in TextEdit.

  2. From the Menubar, click Edit - Speech - Start Speaking. This will play the audio through your computer speakers.

  3. To stop, click Edit - Speech - Stop Speaking.


  1. Select the text in Pages.

  2. Right-click and choose Speech - Start Speaking.

  3. To stop, right-click and choose Speech - Stop Speaking.

Audio Files

Instead of hearing the audio on your Mac, you can also create an audio file. This option is not turned on by default. You first need to turn on this feature.

  1. From the Apple Menubar, click the Mac Apple icon and choose System Preferences from the menu.

  2. In the dialog box, select the Keyboard icon in the Hardware section.

  3. In the Keyboard dialog box, select Services on the left.

  4. On the right, extend the Text section.

  5. Put a check in the box next to Add to iTunes as a Spoken Track. This will add the option to the TextEdit and Pages menus.

  6. Close the Keyboard dialog box.

Now you can go back to TextEdit or Pages and create an audio file of the selected text.

  1. Quit and reopen TextEdit or Pages. Select the text.

  2. From the Menubar, click TextEdit (or Pages) - Services - Add to iTunes as a Spoken Track.

  3. In the pop-up dialog box, choose a System Voice from the pop-up menu and click Play to preview the voice. Check the voice you prefer.

  4. Give the audio file a name in the Save As box.

  5. Click Continue. Your Mac will not play the sound through its speakers but will create an .m4a audio file and place it in iTunes.

  6. Open iTunes. In the Library menu, select Music. You will see your audio file listed.

You can also find the .m4a file on your Mac in this location.

Users/you/Music/iTunes/iTunes Media/Music/Unknown Artist/Unknown Album/NameOfFile.m4a

If you prefer .mp3 format

  1. Open iTunes Preferences

  2. Click the Import Settings button

  3. In the Import Settings dialog box, set the Import Using option to MP3 Encoder

  4. Click OK

  5. Find the .m4a file in iTunes

  6. Right-click an choose Create MP3 Version from the menu

  7. iTunes will create an .mp3 version of your .m4a audio file

Join us in the Animation forum. | Join us in the Digital Art forum.


Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to Twitter Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to Facebook Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to MySpace Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to Del.icio.us Digg Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to Yahoo My Web Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to Google Bookmarks Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to Stumbleupon Add Text+to+Speech+for+Educational+Apps to Reddit


RSS | Related Articles | Editor's Picks Articles | Top Ten Articles | Previous Features | Site Map

For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Flash and Animation Newsletter

Past Issues

Printer Friendly
tell friend
Tell a Friend
Email Editor

Content copyright © 2015 by Diane Cipollo. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Diane Cipollo. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Diane Cipollo for details.


g features
Image Preparation for Holiday Intro Video

Holiday Season Motion Graphics Storyboard

Understanding Video SEO by Ian Lurie

Archives | Site Map


Past Issues

Less than Monthly

BellaOnline on Facebook

| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2015 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.

BellaOnline Editor