Friday, May 19, 2017

Collaboration Across Content Areas Leads to Deeper Student Learning

Earlier this year 4th grade students at Manzanita Elementary School embarked on the fantastic goal of creating student driven claymation/stop motion animation movies. Students first wrote stories in their Language Arts class with Mrs. Debra VanDeventer where English Language Arts learning standards were addressed. Students then voted and selected one or two stories that they thought would ultimately make the best claymation movie. 
In art class, with Ms. Devon Inglee, students, working in groups, designed storyboards and sets before jumping into creating their clay characters. Using iPads, students took pictures of each individual movement that demonstrated their part within the story, moving characters and changing scenes. 
After the photos were taken (and there were hundreds of them!), students then imported their pictures into iMovie, editing and adjusting the pictures so that the characters began to move and come to life. They then recorded their voices and scripts, adding sound effects and music (as time allowed). The end product is a group of fantastic animated versions of their wonderfully created stories in a visual format.


This has been a long project but what is so impressive is the amount of engagement and enthusiasm each student put into their animations. This amazing project has touched on many of CFSD's standards and DLPs that involve 21 Century Learning and have helped all of our students develop student centered deep learning, collaboration, and creative problem solving skills.  The importance of the project and the learning was also deepened because it spanned content areas and was taught by different teachers in the students' day.  No longer was the learning happening in one "silo" and then another.  All of the sudden what students learned from one teacher was then being applied in a different room with a different teacher.  It was very powerful learning in action and exciting to see!
Below you will find links to each of the 6 student created claymations. Please watch them all- they are FANTASTIC!

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