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Animation Chefs: Kids learn animation

What it is: Animation Chefs is a fun website/blog that teaches kids how to create their own animations using stop motion video techniques.  The Animation Chefs teach how to create animations using a “secret” recipe.  To create animations you need two things: a camera and a computer.  Animation Chefs aim to help young producers of stories and animation learn about the latest and greatest ways to get their content created.  The blog will continually be adding tips, tricks, and tutorials for creating online animated videos. How to integrate Animation Chefs into your curriculum: Animation Chefs is a great place for students (and teachers) to learn the tricks of stop motion animation.  Students can use this site to learn new techniques and get advice for creating their own videos.  My students loved creating their own videos.  Any time I mentioned a video project, the students would ask daily when we would start with it.  Our students have grown up in the video generation and this is one of the languages they want to learn to speak in.  Visit Animation Chefs as a class to learn about stop motion animation, for inspiration, and to learn new tricks.  If you have students that are particularly intrigued by using video to tell a story, this is a great place for them to learn the tricks of the trade.  Often we as teachers shy away from lessons that we aren’t familiar with.  With Animation Chefs, even if you aren’t familiar with creating stop motion animation, you can provide a fun learning experience for your students.  How can your students use stop motion videos for learning?  Students can tell any story, illustrate their learning, explain a difficult concept, reflect on learning, or create videos for younger students/grade levels.  In my computer classroom, I had students take a picture of themselves every single time they logged into the computers during the school year.  We put all of the pictures in a “me” folder on their desktop, labeling each picture with the date.  The last week of school, we created a stop motion video with all of the pictures by putting them into iMovie and setting the picture clip to 1 second.  Students added music that they created in Garageband and a title page.  The end result: each had videos of their school year where they could watch themselves “grow” up.  This works especially well in second through fifth grade where the changes in a years time are marked. Tips: Animation Chefs has a Twitter page, if your class is on Twitter, they may be a good tweep to follow as a class. Please leave a comment and share how you are using Animation Chefs in your classroom!

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News-O-Matic: New non-fiction delivered to your classroom every day!

Posted by admin | Posted in Geography, Government, History, Interactive book, Interactive Whiteboard, iPod, Knowledge (remember), Language Arts, Math, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 14-07-2014

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News-O-Matic: New non-fiction delivered to your class every day!

What it is: Press 4 Kids, News-O-Matic is both a subscription-based app and a free daily email delivered in pdf format. News-O-Matic is a fantastic current event, news source for elementary students. It is a great resource for fresh, non-fiction material for your classroom. Recall, discussion, and comprehension questions are included in each News-O-Matic. You can purchase an app subscription for your class in the 1:1 iDevice setting, or you can subscribe for the FREE daily school edition which is delivered by email. The PDF can be printed out to share with your students, or to keep your class paperless, you can share it on an interactive whiteboard or projector-connected computer.

How to integrate News-O-Matic in your classroom: News-O-Matic delivers a daily newspaper written especially for elementary-age students. Each edition comes with 5 current-event, news stories that cover the latest news, science, sports, and wacky kids stories. Students get a chance to not only read the news, but also rate articles, submit questions, and submit their drawings. News-O-Matic is  a great way to keep your students reading regularly. Each day they will get engaging non-fiction reading that helps build a global perspective. Use News-O-Matic daily, as a class discussion starter. Challenge your students to make connections between the current events they are reading about, and the learning they are doing in class. Integrate geography study with reading each day. If you have a classroom map, put a place marker on it each time you read an article that is location specific. This could also be done virtually with Google Earth. This practice will help students visualize where each event takes place, while at the same time building geography skills.

Tips: All publications are ad free, so you never have to worry about inappropriate content.

The school app edition of News-O-Matic is $9.99 and can be found here.

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