As I’ve started thinking about the tools I use in my elearning course, I’m starting to realize I’m mostly about eye candy. I was going through my mind thinking of the one or two things I can use and feel comfortable with, but they mostly are not within D2L as collaborative tools , which is perhaps what I should be more interested in learning. My goal this semester then, should be to use apps that help deliver content, feedback or provide collaborative work.
Before I start on my panicky tirades about what new things to use, how to use, and help me use, I should start they way I’ve been taught to start report cards, feedback and parent teacher interviews – with the positives!
I feel that my first goal in elearning was to get kids to the page. I’m not sure that was an official mandate, but it has been a concern with my board in the past.
Something I have used with some success is Go!Animate. Go!Animate Go!Animate is a program that lets you create a video animation using pre-fab voices or even record your own. It has a number of scenarios already made for you, you just need to add the audio. You can choose, animals, anime, space, pirates etc and the actions and music are pre-loaded. You type in the dialogue you want and it does the rest.
I have used this as a cute reminder for students to hand in work, to answer FAQ, to encourage feedback and attendance. The students get a kick out of it and this starter version only takes a few minutes.
The next level is to create your own characters, wardrobe, scene, props, movements, etc. This takes more time, but is much more personalized and the action can match more closely the dialogue you enter. I must admit this is way more fun to watch, but it comes with the added time and effort you make in creating your scene.
My students have even asked for more videos at times. You can almost create your own little soap opera because you can save characters and use them again. It can become a running joke, kids will have to log in to see what has happened in “previous episodes”. Hey, you gotta try things to get them coming back, right?
Go!Animate is an tool that is easy to use and is something new and different for students to look at. A change from ordinary type written messages can be a challenge but you can easily build on your skills and create characters easily.