Thursday, August 14, 2008

Stop Motion Animation--a creative approach to education

A couple of years ago I had the great pleasure to work with a very gifted teacher who was doing a two year secondment to the Faculty of Education in my university. She is a primary school teacher who uses elearning/ICTs to engage her student in ways that contextualises their learning using real world tasks.
In one particular case this teacher had a number of indigenous students who were very active, visual and kinesthetic learners. These particular learners did not respond well to traditional teaching and their behaviour was generally considered a problem.
My colleague introduced her class to stop motion animation and asked the students to represent some of their learning using this approach. This resulted in a strong level of learning engagement for all students, but in particular her indigenous students who went from being a behavioural management problem to requesting to start school early, work through their lunch breaks and stay back after class to work on their stop motion animation projects.

Stop motion animation is relatively easy to accomplish these days with free or low cost software products that allow you to take control of the animation frame by frame.

Click on the image to view a video that describes quickly how your students can design and develop stop motion animation courtesy of Toasted TV.

Recently I've been looking at new software for Macs called iStopMotion (about $100AUS) which allows a myriad of options and flexibility. I'm working with some year two students next week helping out one of my graduate diploma students so it will be interesting to see what they come up with using this software.

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