Saturday, March 8, 2014

Stop Motion Neurology

This will be the third year I have done this project, which is unusual for me.  I typically get bored quickly and continually change up what I do from year to year.  But for some reason, this activity really sticks with the students and they have a lot of fun.  I got this message from a college sophomore that took my class her senior year, so obviously the activity is effective at teaching the concept.

State objective -- To understand the structure and function of a neuron and explain how neurons communicate

Project -- Demonstrate Neuron Structure and Function with stop motion animation using leftover Halloween candy and neon expo markers, or any other supplies available.  Here is the rubric we used.

Apps -- I suggested iMotion HD, Explain Everything, iMovie, but allowed students to really use any apps they wanted to create their tutorial.

Time frame -- 3 class days
     Day 1 to capture images with iMotion HD, or any stop motion app
     Day 2 to import into Explain Everything to voice over
     Day 3 to import into iMovie to edit and add effects, titles, etc

I only have 2 iPad tripods, so the other groups had to get creative.  Here are a couple of my favorite homemade tripods.  Best use of textbooks I have seen this year! :)

My favorite part of this assignment really is how much fun they have with it.  It is something outside of the normal routine, and while they are using technology, they aren't focused on it. The technology is just there to capture what they are doing on the table with candy and neon Expo markers.

Here are a couple of final products.  Shout out to Greg Kulowiec for the awesome session at Ed Tech Teacher's iPad Summit for the great ideas on App Smashing.  I gave students extra points on this assignment if their final product included other apps that weren't mentioned above.

 Video credit to Zeba, Sravya, and Sharon

Video credit to Gabby, Belle, Sumika, Joyce, and Jinny

ps...I didn't teach them any of this. There was no prior instruction at all.  After the project, we watch a few anonymous videos that were created during other class periods and evaluate for accuracy.  I am always impressed with how quickly they can point out an error in the process.

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