I am a biology teacher for the North Hills School District near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I have been using GoAnimate for Schools with my students for about one and a half years. I teach a curriculum where we do not have a textbook but rely on technology and teacher-generated material for content. The focus in the course is for students to take their knowledge and create projects related to the content. Creation is a major focus in my curriculum because it is the highest level on the new Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy.
I will use GoAnimate to make introductions to lessons or to reinforce lessons. For example, I made a solutions video clip where I created an avatar of myself talking to a cell. The cell experienced the different types of solutions (hypertonic, hypotonic, isotonic) solutions and reacted accordingly. I have also used it to present information on a molecule that cells use to obtain energy, ATP. I used these GoAnimate animations as part of a flipped classroom. The GoAnimate cartoon assisted in giving my students the content but added interest to the concept. In some cases I edit the GoAnimate cartoons with PowerPoint/Keynote slides or with videos of me writing/drawing biological information related to the concept. It is a nice way to break up the content and keep the students interested.
They also use GoAnimate to explain concepts in biology. Sometimes I give students an option for different projects that they can create. I often give them the option of GoAnimate or have all students create a GoAnimate, depending on the project/concept we are working on. Some students take tremendous interest in GoAnimate and work on it extensively outside of class, even though they were not assigned to work on the project. They like presenting their projects to the class, some of them can really become quite entertaining. Typically, I have them get their feet wet with GoAnimate the first time they make an animation but then I encourage them to get creative and make their projects something others will enjoy watching.
Overall GoAnimate has become a great asset to my teaching.
-Jackie Karenbauer, High School Biology Teacher, PA
To learn more about GoAnimate for Schools visit http://goanimate4schools.com.
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