Tuesday, January 11, 2011

My first GoAnimate Cartoon

I recently signed up for a GoAnimate 4 Schools account to see how the system works. What features it has and what it could offer me as an Instructional Technologist.

I am very surprised at how easy it was to get into the creating aspect of the website. After I enrolled for my Teacher Plus account I received my login info after a couple of days. The Teacher Plus account provides for both the teacher and the students in your class a Private controlled area for students to put their work and some Social Networking features to help them. You can upload your own sound, music and images to the site to import into your animation. The website also allows you to record sound or rather voice record for your animation creation. Here is the full Features list for you to look at. GoAnimate 4 Schools also has a Forums page for you to ask and get answers to questions you or your students may be having when they are using the site.
The Lesson Gallery offers 6 different category headings that you can put your Animations in. They are Technology, Languages, Literature, Science, History and Math which you get to choose from when you are Save as a Published completed project.

Now how easy is it to create an animated scene with GoAnimate? It is very easy, here is a breakdown of the panel page. When you go to either edit a current project or create a new one the GoAnimate screen shows with three distinct parts to it. You have a Storyboard area which runs along the bottom of the page where the individual scenes are stored while you are creating. There is the screen editing area where you can set up the animations for objects and characters you have placed in the scenes. Then lastly on the left side of the screen is what I would call the tab viewer. There are six tabs to assist you in creating your animation.
  • Character Tab - Choose from the preloaded characters or create your own
  • Thought Tab - Series of thought and speaking bubbles
  • Background Tab - Choose form the preloaded backgrounds
  • Object Tab - Choose from the preloaded objects
  • Music Tab - Choose from the preloaded music, sound fx or record your own voice
  • Effects (FX) Tab - Choose from their pre-scripted effects.
And of course you can upload your own stuff as I talked about earlier, sound, images, video and swf files can be imported to the site to use.

So I could not give a proper review unless I went through and created my own animation. It was very easy, I selected my characters and used the canned voice tracks. Oh did I forget to tell you the system uses Text-to-Speech software to translate up to 120 characters that you type into voice. And I also used some other special animation features to have the characters interact on the screen. All in all it took about 45 min from start to finish to put together about a minutes worth of video. And the nice thing about go animate is that you can pick out the web address of your video or you can embed it directly into your webpage or blog page using the provided code.

So here is my very first GoAnimate cartoon video on
How to Insert Media into a Promethean Flipchart

GoAnimate4Schools.com: Inserting Media by EHerreid

Like it? Create your own at GoAnimate4Schools. It's free and fun!

So the video is still a little raw and needs some additional tweaking to get everything working like I want it to. As well I want to see how much I can do with this program and what other features I can find that I have not seen yet. I think students and teachers will really like this and will want to use it in the classroom to help students focus on computer skills as well as their curriculum. Who knows students might just enjoy creating cartoons to explain their literature readings or to demonstrate math problems, or how about cartooning through history. You make the call, go to the site, check it out, sign up for a FREE account and play for a while.

video created by: eherreid

1 comment:

Michelle Wiley said...

Thanks for the great review of our new GoAnimate4Schools site! I'm happy to hear that you found it easy to use and have thought of lots of ways to integrate it into your teaching.

If you ever have any questions please feel free to email me at michelle@goanimate.com

Michelle Wiley
GoAnimate Community Manager