Though most people know me for my programming and robotics courses I actually have a degree in Film and Video Production. My very first teaching experiences were stop-animation summer camps for kids. When you have been doing something for a long period of time it becomes a bit routine, you don’t get excited about it the way you once did.
Mixed Media Animation made teaching stop-motion animation exciting again. This was the first time I decided to focus on different animators and their techniques each session. As Zach said in the animation show introduction, ‘We learned many styles of animation, such as cut paper, magazine cutouts, and clay.” It was also the first time I allowed my students to choose the medium for their final animations. It was amazing seeing the kids connect with specific artists and styles and incorporating that into their own work.
My favourite part of the course was the claymation, I love morphing the clay.
The classroom culture in this course was also the best yet, everyone worked together to keep the sessions running smoothly. Students arriving early would often volunteer to help me set up the animation stations and everyone took an active role in cleaning up at the end. During animating time there was excellent communication and collaboration between team members. It’s difficult to animate, you need to make sure not to move objects too much between each picture and you need to avoid taking pictures of hands. It helps to have a reliable team-member to focus on the larger animation while you focus on animating individual pieces.
Discussing compelling stories for final animations
Working on creating characters out of modeling clay
Students proudly pose with their clay robot
At this point I have been teaching some students for a year now, it has been absolutely amazing watching them grow, both in their skills as creators and as people. I can’t wait to see what they will make next!
If you are interested in enroling your child in an animation course for Term 2 we have opened up a second session of Lego Animation on Wednesday evenings. Learn more…