Showing posts with label comics in the classroom. Show all posts
Showing posts with label comics in the classroom. Show all posts

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Free Webinar - Comics In the Classroom

Having your students create comics can be great way to help them get to know each other and for you to get to know them. The process of creating a comic is an excellent way for students to practice developing plot lines. You can learn more about these ideas and others in my free webinar Comics In the Classroom.

Comics In the Classroom is a free webinar that I hosting next week on Thursday at 3pm Eastern Time. The webinar will feature five ways to use comics in your classroom and a handful of tools for creating comics. You'll even get to contribute to the creation of a comic during the webinar.

Comics In the Classroom will last for about an hour. Those who register will receive a special discount code to use on my upcoming back-to-school series of professional development webinars.

Comics In the Classroom will be recorded for those who register but cannot attend the live session. You don't need to email me to get the recording. It will be sent to you if you register for the webinar. Register here.

Friday, October 21, 2016

10 Ideas for Using Comics In Your Classroom

Over the last couple of months I've shared a handful of tools that students can use to create comics. I even conducted a webinar on the topic last month (the recording is available here). There is no shortage of tools for creating comics available to students. Regardless of which comic creation tool you choose to have students use, the ideas for using comics in your classroom are the same. Here are ten ways that your students can use comics in your classroom.

1. A fun alternative to traditional book reports.
Rather than just writing about a book, have your students illustrate their favorite parts of a book. Let them create illustrations of characters as they pictured the characters while reading a book. The Giver is a perfect candidate for this kind of alternative book report.

Another way to use comics for a book report is to have students illustrate an alternate ending to a favorite book. Or have them illustrate an epilogue to a book.

2. Create biographies.
For a history lesson have students pick a famous person and illustrate significant moments in that person's life. The further back in history, the better because students will have to really start to use their imaginations to illustrate scenes of people for whom there are few portraits or photographs.

3. Create autobiographies.
Let students tell stories from their own lives in a comic setting.

A variation on this idea is to have students depict themselves as the star of a superhero story.

4. Create goal or vision boards.
Many comic creation tools let students use a mix of pictures and illustrations. Let your students use that combination to illustrate their goals for the school year, for an athletic season, or as a response to  "where do you see yourself in five years?"

5. Illustrate procedures.
In elementary school classrooms you could have students create comics about appropriate recess behavior or lunch room behavior. With older students you might have them create a comic or storyboard about science lab safety concepts. A simple, one-frame comic tool like ToonyTool could be used by older students to create lab safety reminder signs.

6. Summarize events.
Students of all ages can use comics to create summaries of an event like a political debate. Or you might have students create comics about historical events. Pixton offers some extensive lesson plans based on that idea.

7. Craft a visual timeline of events.
Creating timelines is a classic social studies lesson activity. Have students enhance their timelines by creating comic summaries of the events on their timelines. They could create the timeline entirely in a tool like Storyboard That or they could create their comics then print them to add to an existing timeline they created on paper.

8. Write and illustrate fun fiction stories.
A lot of student struggle to write fiction stories when they're just given a blank document to write on. Comic creation tools often include lots of visuals that can help spark ideas in students' minds. Make Beliefs Comix offers a lot of fiction writing prompts for students.

9. Illustrate concepts and or vocabulary terms. 
Creating comics to illustrate the meaning of a vocabulary word is a fun alternative to simply writing definitions and studying flashcards.

10. Model polite conversations. 
A lot of schools use the parent-teacher-student model for first quarter and first trimester conferences. Before your conferences have your students illustrate how they would like the conference to go and how to phrase the things that they would like to say during the conference.

5 Tools for Creating Comics
Storyboard That and Pixton both offer comprehensive lesson plans that incorporate the ideas listed above. Of course, you don't need to use those tools to create great comics. You could also use Google Slides to create comics as I demonstrated in this video. To create simple, single frame comics you could try a tool like ToonyTool. Or you might try Make Beliefs Comix for creating comics in multiple languages. Make Beliefs Comix also provides PDF comic templates that you can print for your students.

Disclosure: Storyboard That and Pixton are advertisers on FreeTech4Teachers.com

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Storyboard That Offers Four School Year Starter Projects

On Wednesday I published a post about using pictures to get students to tell stories about themselves to help you and their classmates get to know each other. Shortly after I published that post I received an email from Storyboard That about their back-to-school story ideas.

Storyboard That published a blog post featuring four ways to use their storyboarding tools to start the year. My favorite of the four suggestions is to use Storyboard That to have students create short summaries of the things that they love. Students can make their stories as simple or as detailed as they like. In the sample provided by Storyboard That the students simply inserted images and wrote one or two words about the image. You could also have students create a comic containing entire dialogue about a favorite hobby. 

The other back-to-school activities suggested in the Storyboard That blog post are summer reading summaries, stories about goals for the new school year, and stories summarizing summer vacation highlights. 

Learn about some of the great features of Storyboard That in my playlist of video tutorials. The playlist includes six short tutorials as well as one complete webinar recording featuring Storyboard That.



Disclosure: Storyboard That is an advertiser on FreeTech4Teachers.com

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Free Customizable E-Books from Make Beliefs Comix

Make Beliefs Comix is a multilingual comic strip creation service that I've featured in the past. For more than a year they have offered more than 300 printable comic strip templates. Recently, Make Beliefs Comix released a handful of free e-books. The Make Beliefs Comix e-books are PDFs that students customize by filling in the blanks in the document. If your students use Chrome, they can complete the PDF in their web browsers.

Applications for Education
The Make Beliefs Comix e-books provide a nice source of writing prompts for elementary school and middle school students. If your classroom does not have enough computers for every student, take a look at the Make Beliefs Comix printable templates to use as writing prompts.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

How to Type Non-English Characters in Storyboard That Stories

During the Comics in the Classroom webinar that I hosted on Monday night we learned that you can now use non-English characters in Storyboard That comics. If you don't want to sit through the whole recording of the webinar to see that feature, check out the short video I made just to demonstrate how to type non-English characters in Storyboard That.


Disclosure: Storyboard That is an advertiser on Free Technology for Teachers.