This unit is designed to take learners from the beginnings of animation to the pinnacle of today’s animation processes. Students will begin by learning about, and (according to age group) create, Victorian motion toys such as thaumatropes, zoetropes, and flipbooks. Students will develop their own character and write a short story about this character. They will next develop a storyboard about the story, design sets, props, and even the character. Next, middle and high school aged students will learn about how to plan out shots, control lighting, and will shoot their own stop motion movies. Finally, these older students will learn how to take their images from the camera and use Windows Movie Maker to use their still images alongside royalty free music to create a finished stop motion film.

Whenever pictures and/or animations not created by the author of this wiki or her students are used, authorship is noted unless it is in the event of a popular, commercial character such as Bugs Bunny etc. If you notice something uncredited, please let the author know; no trespass is intended. You are permitted to use and/or print any of the lesson plans, images and/or videos in this wiki by the author and/or her students in a non-commercial K-12 environment. Should you decide to re-post any of the information from this wiki elsewhere online, it is requested you credit this wiki as the origins of such information.

Needed Materials
To complete the lesson presented in this unit, you will need the following items: white paper, pencils, markers, tempera paint, paintbrushes, rubber bands, oil-based clay, pipe-cleaners, scissors, masking tape, digital camera, SD card, SD card reader, computer, USB drive, and Windows Movie Maker (WMM can be downloaded for free:

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About the Creator of this Wiki
I'm Art teacher Amy Leigh Johnson, and I am passionate about using technology in the classroom. Awhile back, I noticed that in order to reach my students to the fullest capacity, I was often using examples from popular cartoons and animations. Suddenly I thought to myself: "Why aren't I using this huge knowledge base to help my students to create their own animations?!" So, I did. And, I created this wiki so that you can too. You can learn more about me by visiting my website: and/or you can view what I am currently up to in my classroom by visiting my blog: ArtfulArtsyAmy.

Presentation from Georgia Art Education Association Fall Conference

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