Sixth graders love to learn new things. They are smart, curious and technologically inclined. A few weeks ago, I whipped a quick GoAnimate video together for my students on a couple of topics we were learning in Social Studies. We are big Edmodo fans so many of my students viewed it before class, and to my surprise many of them had watched it several times. By the time we watched it in class, I had students asking if they could also make videos. Their enthusiasm was contagious! Not only did they want to make videos on things we were currently learning, they decided they should make review videos on previous learning. They volunteered to make their videos during lunch, evenings and weekends. We now have student-made videos on the three branches of government, a field trip to our capitol building, religions and much more.
Interestingly enough, not one of my students has asked for a grade or extra credit points. Instead, they e-mail me when they get home from school asking me to review their work and make recommendations for improvement because they know their classmates are going to watch them. Or better yet, they want students from around the world who stumble upon our site, to find it impressive. One Friday night, I had a student ask if I could please view her GoAnimate video because she had a second video in mind and wanted to get started on it while the idea was fresh in her mind.
I love that GoAnimate videos are simple to make. I have not had to spend one minute of precious class time teaching how to use GoAnimate. In fact, my students are doing more sophisticated ones than I have made or may ever make. Of course, I have made them promise to one day teach me. I love that this week I received constructive criticism from a student about my latest video. I was told, “Mrs. Brandeberry, about your video. You should use the characters names to make it more personal. You need more details on who the Founding Fathers are too. You should also refer students back to our website for more information. Other than that, it was awesome!”
As a teacher, what more could you ask for than students who are reading, writing, listening, learning, and critically thinking because they want to? Come learn with us at http://brandeberry.net.
-Jill Brandeberry, 6th Grade, Madison Middle School, MI
To learn more about GoAnimate for Schools visit http://goanimate4schools.com.
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