Just the other day, myself and my brilliant colleague in Year 2 came up with a fantastic project idea. We knew we wanted to do some animation to link with their Switched on ICT unit: Animating History and we knew we wanted to stretch both the children and ourselves.
Jo’s idea was to create an animation around the people leaving the scene of the fire by boat. This can be seen in paintings such as the one below:
We recreated that scene using some foil for the Thames, fairy lights for fire and various bits of Lego to signify the escaping hoards, their boats and floating debris in the river. The children made boats and little cardboard sets and backdrops, though some boats needed scaling down a bit they were very impressive! When everything was built the class had a short intro to the app and animation processes and off they went. The app we used was iStopMotion, which due to its onion skinning tool and simplicity of operation worked fantastically. The only thing that I would change next time, would be to look at some cheap mounting for the iPads or iPod touches in order to achieve a more fluid series of shots.
Here is my “one I prepared earlier” example that I used to give the children some idea of where we were heading.
A couple of days ago Chrome released Build with Chrome in collaboration with Lego. An online Lego set that lets you create buildings and structures using virtual Lego bricks in virtual Australia and new Zealand.
I have just taken a break from building my virtual home to post it here on the blog.
Ant’s house takes shape from the ground up
I was really excited when I saw the videos advertising this new tool, I was sure there would be lots of opportunities for creative expression and learning.
There is nothing to download and as it is web-based children could of course follow-up on their learning at home. Once a model is built it can be submitted and will appear on the map for others to see. There are a few things to consider before you launch into using this with your class.
Anyone can create a building online with Build with Chrome, but you must be over 18 or get parental permission before you can publish your building see more of this on the House Rules.
There is a limitation to the bricks you can use – I’d say these bricks, windows and door seem to be more from my era of Lego than the vast collection we see in today’s boxes. There are a choice of ten colours for your bricks, but due to the brick limitations you may find your creativity somewhat stifled. Let us hope more bricks are added.
Every model is looked at and approved so there is no possibility of children encountering anything rude or anyone using the virtual Lego land as an advertising space.
The controls can be a little fiddly but stick with them and you’ll be a pro in no time.
I have to recommend this book and similar works available on the Brick Testament website as a great tool for bringing Bible stories to life. I recently used the site during Holy week to look at the easter story with my class. It really helped as a series of visual aids on our whiteboard, though do note if you use this site you really do need to donate to Brendan. Continue reading →