Showing posts with label PowToon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PowToon. Show all posts

Friday, November 2, 2018

How to Use QR Codes to Share Animated Videos

Earlier this week I answered an email from a reader who had heard someone talk about using QR codes so that people could watch animations made by students. Not having heard that person speak or seen the actual presentation my guess was that the process went like this; students wrote stories, students then made videos about the stories, and finally students made QR codes to link to their videos. That's the process that I outline in the following video.


Thursday, October 11, 2018

60 Second Adventures in Religion - Animated Explanations

Some days I scroll through Feedly or Facebook and come across things that immediately make me think of a current or former colleague. That is exactly what happened when I saw the Open University's 60 Second Adventures in Religion videos. I'm quite sure that my former colleague Bree will be interested in using these videos as short introductions to theories and philosophies about religion. These videos aren't about specific religions rather they're about how theorists have explained religion.


Applications for Education
In addition to being used as short introductions to theories about religion, these videos provide a model for simple animated explanations. Your students could use video creation tools like PowToon or Animaker to create their own explanations.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Five Tools for Creating Animations on Chromebooks

Yesterday's post about the PuppetMaster app prompted a couple of people to ask me if there is anything similar available for Chromebook use. While I can't think of anything that is free and exactly like PuppetMaster, here are some options for creating animated videos on Chromebooks.

Animatron is a nice tool for creating animated videos and images. To create a video on Animatron you start by dragging and dropping characters on a background scene and then choosing how long each character will be displayed in a scene. You can also set the length of time for each character in a scene to be in motion. By using Animatron's timeline editor you can make objects appear and disappear from a scene. The best feature of Animatron is that you can record audio directly over the animation. The built-in recording tools lets you see the scene while you're recording so that you can precisely synchronize each scene with its audio track.

PowToon is a popular platform for creating animated videos. In PowToon students create animated videos on a scene-by-scene basis through a series of slides. Students can choose background scenes, characters, and scene objects from a huge media gallery. After configuring the scenes of their stories, students can record voiceovers or play music in the background.

Toontastic 3D is available to use on Chromebooks that support the use of Android apps. Check this list to see if your Chromebook supports the use of Android apps. On Toontastic 3D students can pick from a variety of story setting templates or they can create their own. Once they have established a background setting students then select cartoon characters to use in their stories. Students can choose from a wide array of customizable cartoon characters or they can create their own from scratch. Once characters are placed into the story scenes students can begin recording themselves talking while moving the characters around in each scene. Students can swap characters between scenes, change the appearance of characters between scenes, and move characters from one scene to the next.



MySimpleshow is a free tool for creating Common Craft-style explanatory videos. MySimpleshow requires you to write a script for your video before you can start adding illustrations and sounds to it. In MySimpleshow you will find a wide variety of script templates that will help you plan your video. The script is written in chapters that become the outline for your video. After you have written your script MySimpleshow will take your chapters and give you suggested images and animations to use. The suggestions are based on the keywords in your script. You also have the option to upload your own visuals to use in your video. Adding narration to your video is the last step in the MySimpleshow editor. There is an automated text-to-speech narration that will read your script as narration for your video. Completed videos can be downloaded and or directly uploaded to YouTube from MySimpleshow.

Scratch is designed for introducing students to programming. Creating animations is part of the programming that students can learn through using Scratch. ScratchJR, available for some Chromebooks, is the version of Scratch designed for students in K-2. Plenty of tutorials abound for getting started using Scratch. The best place for teachers to start is on the Scratch for Educators site. There you will find many tutorials, activity guides, and a curriculum guide. The ScratchEd community is the place to go for inspiration from other teachers who are using Scratch in their classrooms. For example, in ScratchEd you might find something like this Google Doc filled with ideas for using Scratch in elementary school mathematics lessons.


  Scratch Overview from ScratchEd on Vimeo.

Disclosure: MySimpleshow is currently an advertiser on FreeTech4Teachers.com

Thursday, April 9, 2015

5 Email Etiquette Tips for Students - Some for Teachers Too

One of my pet peeves is receiving an email that from someone that just launches into a request without stopping to address me by name. For years I have told students that I won't reply to emails if they don't write "Hi Mr. Byrne" or something similar to start their emails. Many of my colleagues have similar policies, I'm sure that many of you do too. Using your recipient's name is one of five good email etiquette tips for students featured in the video embedded below.


The video above was created by Yolanda McCarthy and her colleague Mrs. Watkins. As you can see they used PowToon to create the video.  I think it's a great example of creating a short video lesson with PowToon. PowToon allows you to drag and drop clipart, text, and animations together to create a video like the one you see above.

The video below from Entrepreneur provides some good tips and reminders that adults can use in the workplace. They are also tips that high school students should be learning as soon as possible.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Powtoon Is Giving Away Free Accounts to Teachers - Create Animated Videos Online

PowToon is a great tool for creating animated videos online. The standard free version of PowToon is fairly limited (videos are limited to 45 seconds). Currently, PowToon is giving away 50,000 classroom accounts for free. The classroom accounts include 60 student accounts that will have access to PowToon's advanced features including longer export times.

PowToon provides a drag-and-drop editor for creating animated videos. The videos that you create feature digital paper cut-outs on a colorful background. Think of PowToon as an online tool for creating videos in the style made popular by Common Craft. PowToon provides drawings of people and objects that you can arrange on blank canvas. After adding your narration to the arrangement you can publish your video.


Friday, April 5, 2013

Excellent Tools for Creating Videos Without Installing Software

Over the years I've published some lists and reviews of free tools for creating videos online. Quite a few of those tools have been for creating simple videos that are really just automated, audio slideshows. See Animoto for an example of this. There's nothing inherently wrong with having your students use those tools, but at some point you will want to take your video projects to the next level. These are the five tools that I recommend for creating and editing videos without installing any special software.

Pixorial is the online video creation tool that I hear teachers talking about a lot lately. The thing that I like the most about Pixorial is that the video creation and editing tools are laid out in an intuitive user interface. Most users will never find themselves wondering what any of the editing tools do or what to click on next. To create a video in Pixorial you can upload pictures and raw video footage then organize that media into the sequence in which you want it to appear. You can insert transitions between elements by selecting them from the transitions gallery. If you would like to add a soundtrack to your production you can select one from the Pixorial gallery or upload your own audio files. Pixorial also makes it easy to add text to each picture or video that you upload. Just click on "overlay text" in the video editor when you're viewing the element that you want to add text to. Pixorial offers a free plan to educators. The educators' plan provides 30GB of free storage. Pixorial offers Android and iOS apps too.


WeVideo is a collaborative online video creation tool. In the video editor you can upload your own media clips or use stock media clips to produce your video. The video editor provides tools for trimming the length of display and or sound of each element you add to your video project. What makes WeVideo collaborative is that you can invite other people to create and edit with you. The WeVideo Google Drive app allows you to save all of your video projects in your Google Drive account. WeVideo also offers an Android app that students can use to capture images and video footage to add to their projects.

PowToon is a nice service for creating explanatory videos through a drag and drop process. The videos that you create feature digital paper cut-outs on a colorful background. Think of PowToon as an online tool for creating videos in the style made popular by Common Craft. PowToon provides drawings of people and objects that you can arrange on blank canvas. After adding your narration to the arrangement you can publish your video. PowToon's free version limits your videos to 45 seconds.

Wideo is a service that allows anyone to create animated videos and Common Craft-style videos online. You can create an animated video on Wideo by dragging and dropping elements into place in the Wideo editor then setting the sequence of animations. Each element can be re-used as many times as you like and the timing of the animation of each image can individually adjusted. Wideo's stock elements include text, cartoons, and drawings. You can also upload your own images and audio files to use in your videos.


WIDEOO REEL ENG NEW LOGO from Agustin Esperon on Vimeo.

Weavly provides a simple drag and drop interface that allows you to search for, trim and combine tracks without ever leaving the Weavly site. You can mix together video and audio from YouTube, Vine, and SoundCloud. You can also add animated GIFs from Loopcam, Tumblr, and Imgur. To start creating your Weavly video perform a search for video content. When you find a video clip that you like drag it to the Weavly editor where you can adjust the start and end times of the clip. Then move on to adding sounds by search for sounds and draggin them to the Weavly editor where you can again trim the start and end times. Finally, you can add some animated GIFs by searching for them and dragging them into the editor. You can repeat all of these steps as many times as you like to create your video.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

PowToon Looks Like a Great Tool for Creating Explanatory Videos

PowToon is a new service for creating explanatory videos through what appears to be a simple drag and drop process. PowToon provides drawings of people and objects that you can arrange on blank canvas. After adding your narration to the arrangement you can publish your video.

I used the phrase "what appears to be" in the preceding paragraph because PowToon is still in beta. I discovered it through this great TechCrunch post yesterday. After reading the post and watching the introductory video, I immediately registered for a beta invite and I am now anxiously waiting to getting in on the beta. Learn more about PowToon in the explanatory video below.



Applications for Education
Once I get my hands on a beta invite (and to be honest, I'm hoping writing this post will prompt PowToon's creators to send one to me sooner than later) I'll know for sure, but so far it looks like PowToon could be a great tool for students to use to create video explanations. By removing the requirement of creating drawings, PowToon allows creators to focus on telling a story as best as they can.