Animoto: More than presentations and posters

Like many of you, I am frequently, very frequently in fact, trolling the net for an idea or activity to support an idea I’d like to develop further.  Reflecting upon my idea to use Animoto as a tool to introduce ourselves to our new students and/or staff, I thought further about the uses of Animoto.  In fact, if you scroll down a few posts, you’ll see that I’ve posted the .jpg of an alternate collection/suggestions for the best apps to use at the taxonomy level being assessed.

I confess that I didn’t initially think too much about the top level being labeled : Create.  But then came the reflection…

I think using a visual medium for our student projects not only prepares our students to really learn how to communicate in this digital world, but I think that as part of our responsibility as teachers, we  owe it to our students to teach them real skills which will carry them forward in their acquisition of what it means to convey their understandings visually.   I mean, digital activities are great; please don’t misunderstand me.  But we owe it to our students to push them all the way around Bloom’s curve to provide them with an opportunity to really provide us with their insight and synthesis of the information we’re asking them to collect. Some of the rubrics I’ve discovered do little beyond assess the quality of the images, the quality of the sound, or the relevance of the images to the topic. These are surely components of a good multimedia presentation.  Few of the rubrics evaluate the students on their ability to analyze the message or synthesize the message into their daily lives.

I would hope that our rubrics can take the students’ work past the multimedia assessment and require the students to demonstrate the synthesis and evaluation of the moral line of the story.  “Create” is not just a presentation; it is a demonstration of the synthesis of the material and its relationship to their lives, their world, and just how it can and will impact their future thinking.

If we stop short at ‘create’ without including the other higher order skills in our rubrics, we are simply making posters… whose days I think have come and gone.

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