TeachersFirst Edge - Animation

 

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Tall Tweets - Digital Inspiration

Grades
K to 12
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Up your Twitter game with Tall Tweets! This free, easy to use tool creates animated GIFs from Google Slides. Sign in with your Google account to access your slides, then ...more
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Up your Twitter game with Tall Tweets! This free, easy to use tool creates animated GIFs from Google Slides. Sign in with your Google account to access your slides, then choose a slide presentation from your Google Drive. Tall Tweets process your presentation by creating an image for each slide. Once converted, use options to select the width of your GIF and length for each image to appear. Use the sequence of slide option to change the order of slides or choose images to include in the GIF. After making selections, create your GIF to download or share via Twitter. Be sure to watch the Getting Started Guide video for an explanation of how to use this site and options for customizing your GIF.

tag(s): animation (60), images (269), slides (53), twitter (40)

In the Classroom

If using Twitter, use Tall Tweets to enhance messages in a variety of ways. If not using Twitter, Tall Tweets is an excellent tool to help you start. Of course, even non-Twitter users will love this site to download images onto your computer. Pique student's interest in upcoming lessons using Tall Tweets to create an animated GIF of portions of your slide presentation. Encourage parent participation and collaboration by tweeting a GIF of classroom activities, including students involved in learning activities (of course, be sure to understand and adhere to your district's privacy policies). If you teach older students, ask them to tweet out a preview of their upcoming classroom presentations. Use Tall Tweets when working on professional development activities to share successes or upcoming professional development opportunities. Ask students to create Google Slides for any classroom purpose - create slides with different types of animals, share facts about states or countries, or demonstrate math problem-solving tips. Create your GIF from the slides and have students share them onto a Padlet, reviewed here, as a collaboration activity with their peers. Ask students to use Google Slides to organize information to explain an activity, for example, a science experiment, then create an animated GIF from the slides. After organizing their information, enhance classroom technology use and ask them to create an explainer video using My Simpleshow, reviewed here, featuring the steps and science learned in the experiment. Take student learning even further using Wakelet, reviewed here. Ask students to use Wakelet as part of their reflection on their learning experience by including text, images, the slide presentation, and animated GIFs created using Tall Tweets. If students used Twitter to share their GIF, use Wakelet's features to include their Tweet directly into the Wakelet presentation.
 

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Renderforest - Renderforest

Grades
K to 12
1 Favorites 1  Comments
   
Renderforest is a video and animation creation tool. Easily create introductions for YouTube videos, animations, and slideshows using the site's free templates. Free accounts allow...more
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Renderforest is a video and animation creation tool. Easily create introductions for YouTube videos, animations, and slideshows using the site's free templates. Free accounts allow you to create an unlimited number of 360p videos up to 3 minutes long, 500mb storage, and a limited number of music tracks. Follow the step by step instructions for adding backgrounds, images, and music or your recordings to create videos. After publishing the video use the provided links to share it on YouTube or social media sites or download to your computer.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animation (60), video (263)

In the Classroom

Use Renderforest for any number of video creation projects in your classroom. Use the intro video tools to add professional looking introductions to your YouTube creations. The animated video tool is a great resource for creating animated video explanations of science projects, world history events, or discussions of characters in novels. Use the slideshow creation tool to share classroom events and pictures from field trips. Have students use Renderforest to create a video, then include their video with other information in a multimedia project using Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here.

Comments

wonderful resource. Babalola, , Grades: 7 - 12

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Sinespace - Sine Wave Entertainment Ltd

Grades
6 to 12
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Create and participate in a virtual world community with Sinespace's next-generation virtual world platform. Choose the explore link for an overview of some of the most recent and popular...more
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Create and participate in a virtual world community with Sinespace's next-generation virtual world platform. Choose the explore link for an overview of some of the most recent and popular regions created by users in the site. Sign up using your email to access creation tools and choose your avatar. Use tools to personalize your avatar and build your virtual region including vehicles and home backgrounds. The free basic plan includes one region with ten concurrent users. At the time of this review, Sinespace works on PC that has Windows/Mac/Linux. Though they are working on Android and iOS versions.

tag(s): animation (60), coding (77), computers (102), digital storytelling (143), STEM (209)

In the Classroom

Be sure to check with your Technology Department, as many districts require authorization to download or install new applications. Plan ahead as you request that this application be installed on your classroom or laptop cart computers. Share Sinespace on classroom computers and allow students to create and explore on their own. Consider sharing with "tech savvy" students first and let them learn how to create within the site's program. After some students become experts, share Sinespace with other students to begin learning how to work within a virtual environment. Use an infographic creation tool like Canva, reviewed here, to create and share tips for using Sinespace. Once students learn how to perform specific functions, ask them to create an explainer video for other students use using My Simpleshow, reviewed here.

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Plotagon Story - Plotagon AB

Grades
6 to 12
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Create animated videos and emojis with Plotagon. Use Plotagon apps for computers or mobile devices to write, record, and share your story. Follow the directions to download the app...more
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Create animated videos and emojis with Plotagon. Use Plotagon apps for computers or mobile devices to write, record, and share your story. Follow the directions to download the app to begin. Follow the prompts to choose backgrounds, sounds, and add text. Plotagon Story includes four preinstalled characters and two preinstalled scenes, and you can download additional characters and scenes for free. When complete, publish your video to YouTube, Facebook or Twitter, share using the URL, or save to an mp4 file on your computer or on your Plotagon account.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animation (60), DAT device agnostic tool (174), digital storytelling (143), video (263)

In the Classroom

Use Plotagon to create animated videos for use as an interesting introduction to new content. Allow students to create their own animated videos bringing characters from a novel they are reading to life with voice recordings of their script. Bring creative writing projects to life or retell historic events through animation, redefining student learning. Be sure to have students create a storyboard to help make the video creation go smoothly. Do this either with paper and pencil or try using a digital storyboard like the Amazon Storybuilder, reviewed here, or Storyboard Generator, reviewed here. Have students include their Plotagon as part of a larger multimedia project using Sway, reviewed here. Sway provides tools for creating interactive presentations including images, videos, and more.

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Animaker - Srinivasa Raghavan

Grades
6 to 12
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Animaker is an easy to use animated video creation tool. Create an account to begin your video and choose a template to customize. Be sure to watch the tutorials before ...more
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Animaker is an easy to use animated video creation tool. Create an account to begin your video and choose a template to customize. Be sure to watch the tutorials before starting to learn all of the features included with Animaker. When complete, download a video to your computer or directly to YouTube or Facebook. Free accounts allow videos up to 2 minutes in length and five exports per month. The tutorials reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable, you will have to find other options for viewing.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animation (60), creativity (116), movies (66), video (263)

In the Classroom

Animaker now allows 2 teachers to share 25 students, 3 groups, and has an in app messenger. Use this tool easily in your Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classroom since all students will be able to access it for free, no matter what device they have, using the internet; no downloading apps. Students will need the basic understanding of how to create using this tool. Work together on your interactive whiteboard to create a class video before assigning to students. Use Animaker to make commercials, science fair previews, infographics, and animated shorts in any content area. Have students make "advertisements" for an organism or a literary character. Make a travel commercial for a country being studied or for cultural sites in a world language class. Be sure to share the presentations on your projector or interactive whiteboard.

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My Simpleshow - simpleshow

Grades
K to 12
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My Simpleshow creates dynamic and professional-looking video explanations easily (and for free!). View examples for an overview of the different available templates. Create an account...more
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My Simpleshow creates dynamic and professional-looking video explanations easily (and for free!). View examples for an overview of the different available templates. Create an account using your email to make your own videos. Start by writing a script or uploading a PowerPoint. Follow Simpleshow's step-by-step directions for using templates and adding images and text to create a video. Record your own soundtrack, or choose from provided voice-overs. Simpleshow works on any device with a web browser. Simpleshow recommends uploading published videos to your YouTube account for easiest sharing. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Freemake Video Converter, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): animation (60), digital storytelling (143), movies (66), multimedia (50), slides (53), video (263)

In the Classroom

Challenge older students to create their own Simpleshow. Have students use this tool to share their ideas or to "prototype" an idea. Students can modify their learning and create videos to show math processes, explanations of complex concepts, review new learning, teach others, explain scientific processes, tell stories, or present research. The possibilities are endless, and students will come up with hundreds of more uses. Use Simpleshow presentations in blended learning or flipped classrooms. Use Simpleshow to create teacher-authored animations for students in ANY grade. This tool is an excellent way to present new information or ideas for discussion. It is an easy way to share information with the class when a substitute is in your classroom. Embed your Simpleshow creations on your website or blog for students to review at home. Use a Simpleshow video on the first day of school to explain class rules or to give an exciting introduction to the year ahead. Use Simpleshow to create presentations for back to school night or conference nights to display on your interactive whiteboard or projector.

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Hippani - Hippani Ltd

Grades
6 to 12
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Hippani is an HTML animation software download for creating apps, animations, and more. There are many tutorials available making it easy for beginners to start creating professional...more
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Hippani is an HTML animation software download for creating apps, animations, and more. There are many tutorials available making it easy for beginners to start creating professional looking results. There is a free and professional version. The free version allows you to create HTML animation and GIF's. With the free version, you can also test out the professional version during the free 30 days trial. Works with Windows and Mac OS X, however, the web apps created can be converted to iOS, Android and Windows phone apps via another program.

tag(s): animation (60), coding (77), images (269)

In the Classroom

Download Hippani's software onto classroom computers to learn basic coding skills. Students will quickly catch on to this program when allowed to explore and see what they can make. Then, for those who show an aptitude for coding, take advantage of the free 30-day use of the professional edition. Have students browse through the gallery and tutorials to learn about the features of Hippani. Allow them to explore and create on their own as part of your MakerSpace or as a center. Challenge students to use this software to create animated GIFs such as demonstrating how simple machines work, changes in landforms over time, or significant events from novels.

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Tolks - tolks.io

Grades
K to 12
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Tolks is a simple storytelling tool. Create an account using your Facebook or Twitter profile. Choose characters (or upload an image). Don't forget to delete the "dummy images." Next,...more
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Tolks is a simple storytelling tool. Create an account using your Facebook or Twitter profile. Choose characters (or upload an image). Don't forget to delete the "dummy images." Next, add dialogue, by deleting the text in the default box, then preview and edit or save. Simple! Share your Tolk using the URL or links to Facebook or Twitter.

tag(s): digital storytelling (143)

In the Classroom

For younger students, consider creating a class account for Tolks. Have students create Tolks to discuss literature, such as a conversation between characters or descriptions of feelings. Create Tolks to share on an interactive whiteboard or projector as lesson starters or display at the end of a lesson with characters discussing essential information from a lesson. Upload images of shapes and have students compare and contrast features. World language students can create simple conversations in the language they are learning or label pictures for vocabulary. You will find many uses for Tolks in your classroom! Counselors may want to have students create a Tolk to share information that may be difficult to discuss in person. Of course, be very careful not to share private information.

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Google CS First - Google

Grades
5 to 9
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Google CS First is a program for clubs to increase access and teach computer science to 4th-8th-grade students. All training and materials are free for anyone hosting a club in ...more
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Google CS First is a program for clubs to increase access and teach computer science to 4th-8th-grade students. All training and materials are free for anyone hosting a club in the U.S. Materials offer lessons based on themes such as storytelling, sports, social media, friends, and fashion and design. In addition to lesson materials, Google CS provides online training information for club leaders.

tag(s): animation (60), coding (77), computational thinking (34), critical thinking (118), digital storytelling (143), gamification (83), musical notation (37), problem solving (293), social media (37), sports (102), stories and storytelling (33)

In the Classroom

Create a club in your classroom as part of your STEM activities, as a lunch/recess club, or an at-home activity for students. Use the flyers and presentation materials provided to create interest in the club. Differentiate clubs by student interests and abilities. Share Google CS First with your school's media or tech leader as an excellent resource for teaching coding. This site is perfect for those who want to learn more about coding, but have some hesitancy since all materials from creating a group through the lessons are free. If you still have some doubts, enlist the services of a tech-savvy high school student to help with activities as part of their volunteering requirements.

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Animatron - Dmitry Skavish

Grades
K to 12
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Design, organize, animate, and publish creations using Animatron. Use Animatron's backgrounds and characters, or upload your own. Be sure to take advantage of the Tutorials and Tips,...more
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Design, organize, animate, and publish creations using Animatron. Use Animatron's backgrounds and characters, or upload your own. Be sure to take advantage of the Tutorials and Tips, and the Knowledge Base for a full understanding of the many features available. Registration isn't required to create an Animatron project; however, you will need to register to save and share. Free accounts allow users to create up to five public projects with up to 2GB storage (50Gb/month). The Tutorials are in video format and reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, the video tutorials may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Freemake Video Converter, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): animation (60), movies (66), multimedia (50), slides (53), video (263)

In the Classroom

Challenge older students to create their own Animatrons. Students can use Animatron to share their ideas or to "prototype" an idea. Students can create videos to show math processes, explanations of complex concepts, review new learning, teach others, explain scientific processes, tell stories, or present research. Flip your classroom using Animatron presentations. Use Animatron to create teacher-authored animations for students in ANY grade. Animatron is an excellent way to present new information or ideas for discussion. It is an easy way to prepare information for the class when a substitute is coming. Share Animatron creations on your website or blog for students to review at home. Use an Animatron video on the first day of school to explain class rules or give an exciting introduction to the year ahead. Use Animatron to create movies or presentations for back-to-school night or conference nights to display on your interactive whiteboard or with a projector. Teacher-librarians can ask students to create Animatron book reviews to share kiosk style in the library/media center.

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Sketchfab - Alban Denoyel, Cedric Pinson, & Pierre Antoine Passet

Grades
6 to 12
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Sketchfab is a large online community for publishing and viewing 3D materials. Think of it as YouTube for 3D. Explore the site to find over half a million uploads of ...more
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Sketchfab is a large online community for publishing and viewing 3D materials. Think of it as YouTube for 3D. Explore the site to find over half a million uploads of animations, models, and images. Use the keyword search to find specific content or browse through the different categories. Embed or share images using links provided with each image. If you create your own 3D content, free membership allows you to upload using several different file types. Use their online editor to adjust and fine-tune your creations.

tag(s): animation (60), architecture (84), planets (139), plants (174)

In the Classroom

Share some of the many 3D models such as a human heart, the White House, or monarch butterflies. Display these on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector. Share with students with advanced knowledge of gaming and 3D as a resource for sharing their own 3D models and viewing materials made by others. If your school has a computer club, share this site with its sponsor for use with students. Do you or someone on your campus have a 3D printer? Explore and find printables to download and print. If you don't have access to a 3D printer you may want to write a grant for one. See GetEd Funding, reviewed here, for grant writing.

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Mixital Strictly: Robo-Dancers - Code Club & Nesta

Grades
4 to 12
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Make and publish a robot performing your personalized dance moves with Robo-Dancers. Create your moves using toolbars provided or switch to Code Mode to view and change moves using...more
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Make and publish a robot performing your personalized dance moves with Robo-Dancers. Create your moves using toolbars provided or switch to Code Mode to view and change moves using code. Share and save when finished. Be sure to check out other options available on this site for creating animated stories and adding visuals to classic music. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English. The dance steps for the dance, Do The Strictly are on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, the video may not be viewable. You could always view the video at home and bring it to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such asOnline-Convert, reviewed here, to download the video from YouTube. At the time of this review, the site activities did not work with all browsers. So be sure to test out this site on the browser that you will be using.

tag(s): coding (77), computers (102), engineering (131), gamification (83), STEM (209)

In the Classroom

Use Robo-Dancers as an interesting way to introduce coding to your class. Display your dancer on your interactive whiteboard or projector and switch between modes to view changes in code when changing dance moves. After school clubs and activities can use Robo-Dancers to learn coding. Use this tool with gifted students for a great challenge. Set up a coding activity center for interested students when they finish class work or for rainy days and snow days. Share this link on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom.

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Robo Boogie - Code Club & Nesta

Grades
6 to 12
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Create a dancing robot and learn code at the same time! Begin by choosing a robot dancer, and then click "Let's Dance!" Edit your robot's dance moves using the toolbars ...more
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Create a dancing robot and learn code at the same time! Begin by choosing a robot dancer, and then click "Let's Dance!" Edit your robot's dance moves using the toolbars to change the head, arm, and hip movements. If you don't like the music, no problem, choose from four different music genres for your robot. Switch to Code Mode to view and change current settings. When finished, save and share your dance.

tag(s): coding (77), computers (102), engineering (131), STEM (209)

In the Classroom

Demonstrate how to use this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Show students how to switch back and forth between Code Mode and toolbars. Ask one student to change a dance move and other students to adjust the code to match the change. After school clubs and activities can use Robo Boogie to learn to code. Use this tool with gifted students for an interesting challenge. Set up a coding activity center for interested students when they finish class work or for rainy days and snow days. Share this link on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom.

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Kodable - Surfscore, Inc

Grades
K to 4
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Kodable teaches coding to young children through programming logic, sequence, loops, functions, and debugging. Create one free class account for an unlimited number of students with...more
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Kodable teaches coding to young children through programming logic, sequence, loops, functions, and debugging. Create one free class account for an unlimited number of students with twelve weeks of lessons. There are also informal assessment tools built into lessons that allow you to track student mastery. Find lessons with programming curriculum, explanations of key concepts, and Common Core alignment. You can play without an account; however, results are not saved. Kodable can be used on any web browser or an iPad/iOs device.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): coding (77), computers (102), engineering (131), logic (251), problem solving (293), STEM (209)

In the Classroom

Use this tool to learn basic coding skills. Students will quickly catch on to this program when allowed to experiment while viewing their results. Kodable is great for differentiating for students with different abilities and learning styles. Keep track of student progress through your teacher account and entering student profiles. Set Kodable up as a learning center and have students to work in pairs to complete the challenges.

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rawshorts - Antonio Otalvaro and George Estrella

Grades
4 to 12
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Create short animated video presentations using RawShort's cloud-based video maker. Create an account to begin. Choose the free templates option on the left side of the page to view...more
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Create short animated video presentations using RawShort's cloud-based video maker. Create an account to begin. Choose the free templates option on the left side of the page to view pre-made options or begin with a blank template to create your own design. Name the design and launch the video builder. Use options to add backgrounds, images, text, and other features. Videos include just five slides, keeping to the concept of creating SHORT presentations. When complete, save and share your video using social media links or upload to YouTube. Free accounts offer storage of 25 mb and max resolution of 480 SD.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animation (60), slides (53), video (263)

In the Classroom

Use your interactive whiteboard (or projector) and a student emcee to show students the templates and how to use this tool. Ask students to make a plan (storyboard) for their video project. Talk about how to distill your message to only five slides! Have students write and illustrate slides as book reviews for independent reading they have done. Use this tool for students to make book promos for the library/media center. Challenge your gifted students to create a simple video presentation that goes beyond your regular curriculum. Have students make slide shows telling a short story, explaining the life of a famous person, chemical equations, solving for X, and more. During a unit on plants, have students create a video guide for plant care or a show about the world's strangest plants. ESL/ELL or world language students could create videos to practice using their new vocabulary. Create animated presentations for introduction of new units, projects, and lessons.

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Tynker - Krishna Vedati

Grades
3 to 8
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Learn computer coding using simple and easy activities, lesson plans, and an interface sure to please all ages! Click Schools to access the free school activities, or click on Hour...more
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Learn computer coding using simple and easy activities, lesson plans, and an interface sure to please all ages! Click Schools to access the free school activities, or click on Hour of Code to find ones you can use at home or school. Build an animated character (everyone loves the zombie) and then animate it. Create Minecraft Mods, Skins, and learn Game Design. Learn to code by dropping blocks of commands into sequence on the left side of the screen and seeing the results along the right. The lessons provide step by step instructions, missions, and other materials to learn to code. Teachers can create a class and add students to the class. Click on student view of each lesson to see the tools and student tasks. Follow the instructions along the right panel. Note the tools that are along the top including undo and redo! This tool also features a question bar along the top. Note: This free portion of the resource offers six introductory lessons, a visual programming environment, an art studio to draw and paint your own scenes, and a media gallery. The free units of lessons have unlimited student space.
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tag(s): animation (60), coding (77), computational thinking (34), computers (102), critical thinking (118), design (89), game based learning (147), gamification (83), problem solving (293), STEM (209)

In the Classroom

Use this tool to learn basic coding skills. Students will quickly catch on to this program when allowed to "tinker" and see what they can make. Provide a simple assignment with defined rules/tasks to learn the tools. Younger students may familiarize themselves more easily working with a partner. Be sure to recommend that students "ask three before me" (the teacher). Have students use an online storyboard to write down what they plan to do/draw/say with their creation, and to help you keep tabs on students and their progress. For for enhancing learning create a digital storyboard with Amazon Storybuilder, reviewed here, or Storyboard Generator, reviewed here. When finished with these Tynker lessons, move to other free tools such as Scratch, reviewed here. Teachers of even very young gifted students can turn them loose with these challenges when they have already mastered math or science curriculum. Have them create a creature they can explain to the class or share with gifted peers in other classrooms.

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GIFMaker - GIFmaker.me

Grades
K to 12
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Create animated GIF images FREE and EASY using GIFMaker. Animated GIFs are images that change from one image to another automatically. There is no registration required. Select and...more
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Create animated GIF images FREE and EASY using GIFMaker. Animated GIFs are images that change from one image to another automatically. There is no registration required. Select and upload the images that you want to use (in PNG, GIF, or JPG format). Choose your animation speed and image size. You can even choose an image from your smartphone. Animations can be run backwards to create another different animation. Download the finished creation to your desktop.

tag(s): animation (60), images (269), photography (144)

In the Classroom

Create animations of any image! Animate inanimate objects such as a leaf or other object by taking two different pictures of it so it can "change." Use your animations as a focus for story creation or free writing. Animate images used by students for their individual web pages to set the scene for their "About Me" introductions. Design and shoot images to animate as an introduction to a project or report. Challenge older students to create their own animated GIF images. (No registration is required.) Photograph and create GIFs to show two stages of insect development, the growth of a plant, or other scientific concepts.
 
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Alice - Carnegie Mellon University

Grades
6 to 12
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Alice will have your students in wonderland as they use this innovative 3D programming environment targeted to middle and high school students. Be the director of a movie or the ...more
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Alice will have your students in wonderland as they use this innovative 3D programming environment targeted to middle and high school students. Be the director of a movie or the creator of a video game. 3D objects appear in an on-screen virtual world imagined by the creator and move around according to the directions you give by dragging and dropping tiles. The drag and drop technique provides a more engaging programming experience for first-time programmers. Alice provides exposure to object-oriented programming. Alice has practical value for students to learn how computers think. The instructions correspond to standard statements in a production oriented programming language, such as Java, C++, and C#. While using Alice, programmers can immediately see how their animation program runs and the behavior of the objects in their animation. Manipulate camera angles and lighting to make further enhancements. Alice is a revolutionary method to teach programming, especially to first-time learners. It allows students to understand programming concepts, a 21st-century skill.

tag(s): animation (60), digital storytelling (143), video (263)

In the Classroom

Be sure to check with your Technology Department, as many districts require authorization to download or install new applications. Plan ahead as you request that this application be installed on your classroom or laptop cart computers. Alice provides an opportunity to enhance learning for students by creating and learning how to problem solve. Subscribe to the teacher list to receive updates and integration ideas for Alice. The purpose of this list is to provide an easy way to ask questions and collaborate with the Alice teaching community. View and use activities to increase programming knowledge and the use of the Alice program.

Students quickly catch on to Alice when allowed to play and easily see what they can make from it. Provide a simple assignment with defined rules/tasks to learn the tools as well as the drag and drop interface. Have students use a storyboard to organize their creation in order to keep tabs on students and their creations. Replace the paper and pencil storyboard by using a digital storyboard like the Amazon Storybuilder, reviewed here, or Storyboard Generator, reviewed here. Build games to review curricular material for assessments. Have students create videos or digital stories to bring a subject to life. Teachers of gifted can turn their students loose to create animations about individual interests or research projects.

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Blender - Blender.org

Grades
5 to 12
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Interested in making a professional quality animation? Blender is an open-source, downloadable 3D rendering program that is free! Blender offers an array of essential tools for animation...more
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Interested in making a professional quality animation? Blender is an open-source, downloadable 3D rendering program that is free! Blender offers an array of essential tools for animation in the following categories: Interface, Modeling, Rigging, Rendering, Animation, UV Unwrapping, Shading, Physics and Particles, Imaging and Compositing, and Real Time 3D/Game Creation. Since this tool is open source, many scripts for extra tools can be downloaded from the user forums. Even though this tool is time consuming to learn, many detailed tutorials are available on the Blender website. There is also help in the community forum. Download is available for Windows, Mac, or Linux. Be sure to check out the animations in the gallery for great ideas of what this tool can do. Although this site could be used by some younger students, an adult would need to supervise and assist.
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tag(s): animation (60)

In the Classroom

Use this fantastic tool to create professional looking animations. Be sure to bookmark on a class computer or list on your class blog, wiki, or site. Students can challenge their animation building skills with this fantastic resource. Despite the learning curve, students can really learn a lot about making great animations with this fabulous tool. Use this animation tool to make story characters, animals in a food chain, figures in history, and other animations. Challenge your gifted students to create animations to share with the rest of the class. Have students create a review "game" using this animation tool.

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Wolfram Demonstrations Project - Wolfram Mathematica

Grades
4 to 12
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Discover a huge collection of interactive illustrations to help explain complex concepts in science, technology, art, math, and a range of other topics. Use these activities to create...more
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Discover a huge collection of interactive illustrations to help explain complex concepts in science, technology, art, math, and a range of other topics. Use these activities to create interactive visualizations. There are thousands of Mathematica Demonstrations. A demonstration is a Mathematica notebook that takes advantage of Mathematica's manipulate command. Use the manipulate command to create sliders or buttons or check boxes to change the values of parameters in the displays in the demonstration. The result is you control the animation. View demonstrations on topics ranging from odd and even numbers to odd and even functions, fractions to fractals, and from linear functions to linear algebra and linear programming. In addition to mathematical topics, there are demonstrations illustrating the time in different cities around the world, global demographic information, the solar system, and art and music concepts. You need to download the Wolfram CDF player to use and interact with the demonstrations.
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tag(s): addition (224), animals (322), architecture (84), computers (102), division (157), fractions (231), geometric shapes (170), gravity (52), logic (251), maps (294), money (185), multiples (31), multiplication (210), plants (174), psychology (63), statistics (130), subtraction (186), weather (211)

In the Classroom

Explain how to use the Demonstrations on your interactive whiteboard (or projector). Allow students to explore on their own classroom computers. (Remember to download the CDF player onto each computer or request it in advance from your tech department.) Challenge students to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted for reproduction). Use avatars to explain activities performed using a Demonstration. Use a site such as Blabberize, reviewed here. The beauty of the demonstrations is that it allows students to manipulate and "play" to view the impact of changes made, allowing many opportunities for classroom discussion. Ask students to predict the impact of changes using the manipulate command; then discuss the actual impact as it occurs.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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