Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Stop Motion in the Primary Classroom

Stop motion...in kindergarten? No way, right? That's what I thought at first.  It seemed too complicated and I never thought to try it with my own students...until this year.
 I knew right way, after playing around with the Stop Motion App, that my students could easily navigate it.
 Check out how simple it is!
1. Tap the plus button to start a new video.
2. Students tap the red button to take pictures and the bottom of the screen displays the pictures in order as you take them. 

3.  After you're done taking pictures, select the speed for your video. 
4.  Then record!
Our first stop motion adventure was in science.  One of our standards is to identify plant characteristics, but we took it a step further. We decided to build the parts of a plant with play-doh.   Then students used their play-doh parts to show the life cycle of a plant. Here's an example....
This was an easy, quick first activity. Next, I wanted to integrate Stop Motion animation in ELA, specifically reading comprehension. Retelling was a skill that my students sometimes struggled with, so I wanted to try something different to engage them. I needed a book that had simple illustrations, so I used one of our shared reading texts from the UOS (Units of Study). Super Mouse is a short, familiar, predictable text that my students fell in love with. 
I introduced the assignment and our first step was to create the "props" for our retelling. They drew their own background, Super Mouse and other items depicted in the book.  Then, I had a crazy idea to have them work as partners. Before we started, we modeled, practiced and discussed what the partnership should look like.  One would take the pictures and the other would move the props. Did it work, yes!!! Here are some pics of my students collaborating. 

The classroom was abuzz with sounds of engagement and not a single disagreement, which allowed me to serve as facilitator.  After the students finished taking their pictures, it was time to do the voice over. This was done independently in their recording spots and after that we uploaded to Seesaw, which was super easy(see below).

Voila! Here is the finished product after we uploaded it to Seesaw. 
                                   
We had such a great time with these and my only regret was that we didn't start using the app earlier in the year. If you use stop motion with your students, I would love for you to share in the comments below.  

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