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Keywords: Animation, Social Skills, Middle School
Subject(s): Social Skills, Spelling, Autism, Grammar, Special Needs, Writing, Speech and Language, Reading, English/Language Arts
Grades 6 through 8
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
  • Digital Citizenship
  • Technology Operations and Concepts
View Full Text of Standards
School: Foothill Middle School, Walnut Creek, CA
Planned By: Matt Sustaita
Original Author: Matt Sustaita, Walnut Creek
Students will discuss a relevant middle school problem (ex. peer pressure) and create an scenario in which they create specific roles, dialogue, and problem solve. They will create a student directed play and film the interaction to be shown to their same-aged peers.

As a secondary lesson, the students will use muvizu, a free animation software, to recreate their play into a cartoon and animation form or recreate a similar social issue.

Students will begin by reading a Scholastic's Action article highlighting key issues that young teenagers face, such as cyber bullying, and discuss their thoughts on the issue. They will be encouraged to draft other challenges that teenagers face while in middle school and how to handle the situation.

The students will collaborate and recreate a situation with dialogue, specific roles, and how to solve the problem in an appropriate way by acting out the scenario. They will film the scene and display it in front of the classroom.

They will be introduced to a free online animation program called Muvizu which is a user-friendly program that allows free animation and a plethora of characters and scenes. The students will create their project using the program and display it to the school.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
This concept can reach across all many curricular areas including but not limited to: English, grammar, social skills, writing, spelling, and reading.
The follow-up activity is located in the lesson plan.
Materials: Whiteboards, Flash Memory Camcorders, DVD Camcorder, Portable, Digital Voice Recorders, Microphones, DVD/VCR Players, Camera/Video Accessories, Tripods, Batteries, Memory Cards, Computer Accessories, LCD Monitors, Power, Keyboards, Headsets, Mice, Autism, Cause and Effect, Speech and Language
Other Items: 3 Computer, $300 each, total of $900.00