Using Visuals within the Classroom

Digital natives, such as our students, have grown up in a very visual world.  Thanks to the Internet, you have a number of virtual tools at your fingertips to enhance your instruction.  These same tools can be handed to your students as well to share their learning experiences in a very visual way.  Seeing is believing in a 21st century classroom!

Try Animoto; a site that builds visual frameworks to create slideshows and videos.  The site offers a free subscription for educators.

Follow these steps to create an easy to assemble, yet engaging Animoto video.

  1. Gather the images you want to use in your video or use those provided at Animoto.
  2. Log on to Animoto and click Create Video (blue button at top of screen)
  3. You’ll be prompted to choose your video style or background.  These range from solid colors to holiday themes.
  4. Next you’ll be asked to select the pictures you want to use in your presentation.  Your options are to upload images from your computer, retrieve them from a website or to select from images provided by Animoto.
  5. Click on the upload from Your Computer button.  Find the folder where you saved your images and double click on it.  To upload the image, click on the picture you want and then click the Open button.
  6. You can also use video clips.  Keep video clips to quick snippets a few seconds long.
  7. Once the pictures have uploaded, use the tools at the bottom of the page to spotlight, rotate, or duplicate your images.  Click on the Add Text tool to key in a title and subtitle for your video.  When you’re finished, click on the Done button.
  8. Next, choose the music you want to use.  Animoto will suggest a selection for you to use.  To accept it, click on Continue.  To use another selection, click on Change Your Soundtrack.
  9. Animoto provides a good selection of music for your video.  To preview the music in their collection, click on the Select from Our Collection button.  To use music saved on your computer as an MP3 file click on the Upload from Your Computer button.
  10. At the Finalize Tab, you select how fast you want your images to move and make sure everything is the way you want it.  When you’re done, Click on Continue.
  11. You’ll be asked to add any information you’d like included in your end-of-video credits.  When you’re done, click on Create Video.

The coolest thing about Animoto is that the website does all the work from here.  Using the images you uploaded and the music you selected, Animoto creates a video with amazing transitions.  You’ll love the final product and feel like a pro!

Info provided by K-12 Teach Like a Techie: 20 Tools for Reaching the Digital Generation by Lori Elliott, Crystal Springs Books, Peterborough, New Hampshire, 2011.

CHILD/TEAMS Essential Component: Students have frequent and equitable access to computers/technology.

More Websites and Resources for you…

Disclaimer:   ISI assumes no liability for the content of these sites. Be sure to preview carefully before allowing students to use.

“I believe that the motion picture is destined to revolutionize our educational system and that in a few years it will supplant largely, if not entirely, the use of textbooks.”                                   -Thomas Edison, 1922

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