Thursday, March 24, 2016

making movement!

This week we are on a minimum day schedule all week as our classroom teachers do parent conferences. Because of this, I am not meeting with the classes I normally would. I've taken this time to experiment with stop motion projects with a variety of grade levels.

It's something I have wanted to try with my kids for a while, but I just haven't worked it in for numerous reasons. This week, however, I just went for it:)

With my kinder classes, I set up a couple elevated ipads and kids could rotate through the stop motion station during choice center time. I model it with each group and off they go, moving duplo characters around for a few minutes each. They don't quite get the "small movement" part, but that is okay, they have loved being able to play and then see how the photos get strung together to create a loop. Then, we add sound. I recorded one class at lunch to get a soundtrack and I have had kids have conversations while watching the footage in a couple others.

I've had a couple 2nd and 3rd grade classes and with these I have set it up as a choice center, using legos and magnet tiles to create abstract scenes and sound.

I did try out stop motion with a whole 4th grade class. Kids worked in teams of 4 or 5, attempted to come up with a loose narrative, split up the work into character and set designers, and then the plan was to film their work. The energy in the room was quite high and the kids were stoked to create a film. About half the groups got to shoot their movies. Later on, I plan on scheduling more time with them in smaller groups, to finish shooting and adding sound. It was a bit chaotic, but as they get more practice with the process and I get more practice guiding them through it, some pretty rad things are going to happen!

This one was made by one 4th grade student after school- background, character build, filming, and sound were all done in about an hour:)

Done by a 1st grader after school. This took her about an hour and 30 minutes from start to finish.

My goal is to have a monitor set up in our gallery at the end of the year Celebration of Art and showcase videos made in class on a loop for people to view. I'm really excited to explore the possibilities of stop action with students in all grade levels. I think it will add a whole new layer to our program that is so relevant to kids today.


  1. I tried stop motion for the first time this year as well, only with my after school kids though. We do not have access to any sort of tablet, so it was a bit more challenging, but the students loved it. I had the students make flip books as a project before we jumped into stop motion. I think that helped a bit with the idea of small movements. We used playdough, and watched a few videos about the claymation process, as well. Looking forward to seeing where your students go with this in the future.

    1. See if you can get the kids to come to you with their own devices. Maybe mom and dad can go without there phone for an hour or two while kids are creating. :)

  2. I just saw this beach day one. It is so dang cute!