They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but how about a video? Images have always been used to convey meaning and make information easier to remember. Since videos are chains of images more or less animated, we can safely say they are more so full of meaning.
In teaching, videos are now an inherent part of the resources and materials we choose to present information, generate a thought flow, stimulate critical thinking, spark curiosity and foster creativity.
Read more: 5 Quick and easy instructional video ideas for teachers
Our students resonate with variety in general. It makes them more engaged and active, thus decreasing boredom. Videos provide this variety due to their versatility. They are a valuable teaching tool regardless of age or level of comprehension.
Videos can be included in a real-life-like or animated format as part of the learning process. I find animated videos more appealing because they create a playful learning environment and activate that comforting feeling cartoons usually give them.
You can see here an example of how I use videos in my class.
4 Digital tools for creating animated videos for students
You can use animated videos in every type of class and for any kind of topic. To make the learning experience more personalized, you can create the videos yourself to suit your students' needs.
Whether you design animated videos for your students or assign them tasks to make videos themselves, you need to know what to use.
Here are four digital tools that I recommend for creating animated videos:
Moovly is considered to be one of the best educational animation tools. You can present information and ideas for discussion, explain concepts and tell stories through amazing visual styles.
You get unlimited access to over 500,000 illustrations, photos, sounds, music, and videos. You can store your creations to your Moovly Gallery of up to 1 GB and have unlimited access to the Moovly Studio editor. As a teacher, you also benefit from a free education plan if you use an educational email domain known by Moovly.
With Moovly, you get closer to your students by embedding your creations on your learning platform. Students can review the videos at home for deep understanding.
GoAnimate (Vyond) allows you to offer students more interesting learning experiences. These types of videos are well received by learners, especially those with disabilities. Using text-to-speech technology, students can engage more easily with your lessons.
Read more: How online learning contributes to a more inclusive HE experience
You can choose from various characters, backgrounds, clothing options, hairstyles, and props to create animated videos suitable for a K-12 audience. GoAnimate videos are unique because your characters can also behave like real people. For example, your characters can move their mouths while talking.
Choosing from three visual styles, contemporary, business-friendly, and whiteboard, you can create attention-grabbing lessons for engagement and retention.
Animaker is an educational animation tool that facilitates the creation of animated videos at home or in school. Choosing from six video styles and more than 700 templates, Animaker lets you create the perfect video for your class.
When you finish your video, you can download it or submit it directly to YouTube or Facebook. In the classroom, the app allows you to make learning fun with wonderful animations to help students visualize concepts and remember the information better.
Read more: Using edtech to bring edutainment in the classroom
Toontastic 3D is easy to use by students and teachers. This flexible tool is suitable for simple drawing-based animations that can take various shapes such as book or science reports, historical reenactments or biographies, and more.
Toontastic turns lessons into real storytelling moments that spark students’ imaginations and fosters deep learning. It’s a simple yet versatile tool that turns your classroom into a playground for learning.
Your lessons will keep your students focused in class to achieve their learning goals. Through the eyes of characters that mimic humans in speech and movement, students understand important concepts, developing analytical and creative skills as a result.
Read more: Debunking 5 digital storytelling misconceptions
All in all
Animations are a great way to convey meaning and present information. With animated videos, teachers create a feeling of playfulness and childhood experiences that resonate with most students.
Your students will focus better on the concepts and can visualize them with the help of animated characters and colorful props. Depending on the tool you choose, your animated lessons can portray a more or less precise real-life scenario that will grab your students' attention.