Monday, April 13, 2015

Claymation and Elementary Students

Story provided by +Mandy Andrews and +Michelle Johnson  

Fifth grade students at both the North and South Elementary are integrating art and technology as they harken back to the days of Gumby and Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.  New technology makes claymation an easy and fun activity that encourages creativity, problem solving, and pride.

Students first create a story line, backdrop, and clay characters.  Then, using the Stop Motion Studio app, they take a series of still pictures while moving the characters slightly between each shot.  When put together, the still shots become animated and create a film.

“It was so fun to watch the pictures turn into videos,” fifth grader Cadence said.

Students are entering the classroom ready to work and excited about the project.

“It was a difficult challenge,” fifth grader Timothy said, “but it was fun because we got to use clay.”

Art teachers Mandy Andrews and +Michelle Johnson are enjoying leading the students as they collaborate and create creative final products.

“The kids were so excited about the lesson,” Andrews said.  “After the first day in class they were meeting me in the halls asking when they could come back!”

Stop Motion Studio can not only be used to animate clay objects, but also paperclips, buttons, and any number of objects.  Howcast.com provides a series of Youtube videos that offer easy to follow instructions on claymation.  When used along with the app, these how-tos provide a spring board for creating videos both in the classroom and at home. 
“It was so cool!” fifth grader Thomas said.  “I got the app at my house!”

This fun and creative lesson is not only teaching the students about art and technology, but they are also gaining a sense of accomplishment.

“The best part is watching the kids’ faces as they see their final product,” Johnson said. “They are amazed at their own work and you can see the pride in their eyes.”

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