Let’s face it, no matter how learner-centered we make our classrooms, part of our jobs will always be to convey information to students in memorable ways. At those times, we turn to direct instruction as a time-efficient and effective strategy. The most common form of this strategy is the lecture, but this has been criticized for over-use. But live lectures aren’t the only way to do direct instruction, and many digital solutions are not only just as time-efficient, they also offer the added benefit of being timeless so that students can return to them as needed. This is the basis of learning models like the Flipped Classroom in which educators create videos or other learning objects for students to review outside of class, leaving teachers more class time for extension and application activities, collaboration with students, and differentiation.

There are many great tools for creating digital learning objects, including podcasting tools, visualization tools, audio editing tools, photo editing tools, and video editing tools. Teachers regularly create ThingLinks, Infograms, and Tellagamis to quickly share an idea or convey information. One of my favorite tools recently is Moovly, a time-line based video editor that allows me to create professional-looking videos easily.

What is Moovly?

Check out this intro video to get an overview of Moovly:

And here is an example of a Moovly Video I created:

Why Moovly?

There are a few reasons why I like Moovly. First off, the free version is hearty enough to not require that I spend money to do what I want to do. I can also choose to pay for features that I want as needed instead of paying to upgrade to get features I don’t need. Second, it’s so easy to create with Moovly. Each of the animations in the video above were already programmed in, requiring no expertise on my part. Third, I like that I can upload my own images and music. This expands the usability of this tool greatly. Fourth, I have the ability to download my video, share it via social media, or publish it to YouTube, meaning that I have lots of ways to share my Moov with students.  Finally, I really like how many support resources Moovly provides, especially on their blog.

Getting Started

Here are some resources to get you going:

Suggested Uses

  1. Demonstrate a process with Moovly.
  2. Create a commercial for your classroom expectations with Moovly.
  3. Create a persuasive video such as a PSA with Moovly.
  4. Teach a concept with Moovly.
  5. Create a motivational video.
  6. Create a video invitation with Moovly.
  7. Introduce a topic with Moovly.
  8. Teach about an author, historical figure, or character with Moovly.
  9. Illustrate a story with Moovly.
  10. Convey instructions with Moovly.

Why it Matters (Teaching Rubric)

The ability to convey information and class content in an engaging and effective manner requires that we have many strategies in order to differentiate for our students and capture their interest (Competency 2.2). Additionally, by creating content resources that live beyond the moment, we are able to more effectively pace our lessons and make full use of the time we have in class with our students (Competency 2.3).

Additional Resources

Moovly is just one of many easy video creation tools available to teachers. If you use a Mac or an iOS device, you may want to explore iMovie. On PC, Windows MovieMaker is a popular choice. While not a free choice, a great video creation tool for both platforms is TechSmith’s Camtasia. Other web tools of note include Animoto, PowToon, and Magisto. Apps of note include StopMotion, Tellagami, and ExplainEverything.

Your Challenge

Today’s challenge is to look at the options in a video creation tool like Moovly and reflect on how you could use this resource to deliver content and pace lessons.  Share those reflections in the comments below and if you have another great tool for creating digital content please feel free to add it to your comments as well.   Commenting on others responses is a great way to share ideas and make educational connections, just remember that “active participation” is more than just an “attaboy” for someone else. Enjoy!

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    • Let me add, I would love to try a Moovly for grammar and math. My third grader was sitting with me when I watched the There, Their, and They’re video, and he was completely engaged. He thought it was funny and said he would love to see that in the classroom. I guess I can ask him to help me create some Moovly videos for my students.

  1. I agree, of course, with my teaching partner. I need a specific concept in mind to begin creating a Moovly. Using Moovly to create “instructional” videos that students could watch multiple times, if necessary, seems like a good place to start. For example, a Moovly on creating a works cited page following MLA format would be something my students could refer to many times throughout the course and be more engaging than the written instructions or examples I provide. I can also see suggesting Moovly as an option for student projects. Our Academy students create PSAs and infomercials which would translate well to Moovly.

  2. I’m in agreement with most posters on here, that the there, their, and they’re video is going to make a yearly appearance in my classroom. This site gives teachers another tool in their bag of tricks to get students to buy into the concept. Peter is right that sometimes you can locate wonderful videos but they might not match up exactly to what your students need or the focus of the class. This website is all about customization. Make your content be what you need and want it to be while maintaining a balance between work in and benefit out. I registered and started working my way around the site. It isn’t something you can just throw together, you need to have an idea and direction you want to go with your video. I think it would be helpful to storyboard your idea before you sit down to start making videos.

  3. This would be an awesome way to bring historical figures and information to life for my students. I teach 5th grade social studies and I’ve used videos from Education Portal many times. They use animation in a very basic form to teach historical information and my students always love it. Moovly looks to be a way to ramp that up a bit. I would love to give them the opportunity to create their own and share them with their peers or maybe even the other schools in our district. I can also see this as a fun way to flip the classroom for one of our many snow days. I feel like they would be much more engaged watching an animation rather than a regular video of me.

    • It’s always inspiring when we put the tools in the kids’ hands. I love to see what they can do with this stuff. I find with video projects, most of the teaching on my end is about what makes a good video narrative rather than how to do the tech.

  4. I am going to try this with math notes. My math notes are boring for the kids but I think this will keep their attention. I will also try to flip a lesson starting the second semester and see how it works. Moovly will give me creativity to try and bring in the students who are more visual learn ears.

  5. I have used Camtasia before however, Moovly seem a lot more user friendly. I like the drag and drop feature. I can see this being used for a variety of subjects for many different purposes. Our third grade is getting ready to do a Wax Museum project. While I am helping them with the research part during tech and they are presenting live in class I can see having them extend the project and make a Moovly for tech class. Creating a Moovly to go along with my other Cyber bully projects would allow them to take on another personality.

  6. I am considering exploring moovly for creating digital citizenship videos for our students and staff members in preparation for our 1:1 roll out next year. I need a quick, easy, professional-looking tool to create such content (and…more importantly, teach my teachers and students how to create their own content). At the moment, this isn’t even on my teachers’ radars – I’m excited to share with them! In fact, I might just create a moovly about moovly. :-)

  7. I really liked the idea of Moovly. I made an account so I could see how I could use this in my classroom. The first thing I noticed is that this website is super slow. It took me a long time just to make an account and download a template. I thought that Moovly had a really nice variety of options in their free version. I was surprised by how many templates they have to choose from and how much clipart they have available for each template. I really like the idea of making an animated video. I do think the format of Moovly takes a little while to get used it. (I was confused at first why some objects when you dropped them on the board they would look different than in the image library. I eventually realized that you can set them in the animation toolbar.) I did notice that they have a watermark in the downloaded movie, but I was happy to see that it was not as large or as intrusive as the watermark on Animoto.

  8. I could see using this to create a short video to explain a lab or a concept in science or social studies. There are a number of possibilities. I look forward to playing with this. I might use it for a call out for students for a club we are starting next school year. I will probably share this with students for any type of projects I have them do – I like to give options for how they can present their learning.

  9. This really has my creativity going which I’ve created an account to explore more. I was just thinking on how to better demonstrate some of the math concepts like transformations (translation, rotation, reflection, dilation) in a fun and engaging way which I’ll see what I can come up with through this medium. Having the flipped learning style, this can really play to that approach for a lesson.

  10. Since I do not have classes, I will definitely pass this on to our teachers. I signed up for an account and put a small presentation together. It is amazing as to what it will all do. I can see the teachers using this in almost any subject, to make learning more fun!

    • I agree – Moovly can be used with almost any subject matter. It will definitely make live and online presentations much more interesting which will help with retention of content. I plan to use it in my presentations about evaluating website content.

  11. I created an animated video in Moovly for Digital and Online spaces. It is to be used as a behavior model for our students at Virtual Academy. It is a wonderful tool, easy to navigate and upload personal content, and engaging for the viewer. I plan to create more as intros and explanations for the online coursework.

  12. I think Moovly might work in math! Math is a hard class to truly “flip” and my students are not ones to do paper homework at night or watch a video so it might be a good way to do a lesson every once in awhile so kids are used to it then bring it back on a sub/sick day. I don’t see whether this type could be embedded into a flip chart, anyone know? I will add it to my resources to try (when I have TIME).

  13. I am very excited about trying this out. I have spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to animate in Sketchbook Pro. My students figured out on their own how to do it. I think it would be great for students to use the Moovly when making their commercials on the Consumer Health unit as we illustrate various advertising techniques. There are a multitude of ways I can use Moovly in my health classes.

  14. I hate to steal the idea from the example video, but I could use Moovly in lieu of the short direct instruction I use to teach various grammatical concepts in my journalism classes. We cover sentence fragments, run-ons, the forms of “their,” the forms of “too,” etc. I’ve found interesting/funny videos online for some of the concepts, but I can’t find anything for other topics. I’ve never been extremely creative, so I’m glad Moovly would do all the animation for me. Grammar isn’t the most interesting topic in the world. Informative animated videos would help capture the students’ attention.

  15. OH MY GOSH. I have been searching for something that did this. Thank you EVSC. I am so excited to try this out. Currently I have been using PowToon, which I love, but this tool looks like it has the added features I was looking for. I am trying to flip my Business Law class. I would use this tool to create short flipped lessons. I know the kids will zone out and not watch my videos if I do not take the steps to make them interesting. I think this tool would do that. I also would have my students use it to demonstrate their knowledge of a certain concept, for example, the steps in the trial procedure.

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