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This content is taken from the Into Film & Tate 3 Year Project's online course, Developing Literacy: A Journey from Still Image to Film. Join the course to learn more.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds Child Narrator: [Birds chirping] Here’s the buffing bug, Aggie the Stag Beetle chewing up the old bark and there’s that squirrely sweetheart Shirley Girly Squirly sweeping up the dead leaves and wait, yes, there he is, Colonel Snuffle Possum.

Skip to 0 minutes and 23 seconds Colonel Snuffle Possum: Right troops, keep those leaves moving. Aggie, watch those bark shavings on the path. Shirley, keep those nutpods tidy, keep to the drill. I didn’t get these stripes for nothing, you know. Twenty years in the first badger’s club brigade.

Skip to 0 minutes and 37 seconds Shirley: I feel like I’ve been sweeping for twenty years, and I’m aching.

Skip to 0 minutes and 41 seconds Aggie: It would be worth it Sheryl, just keep the bit and its a doddle-daddy-o.

Skip to 0 minutes and 45 seconds Colonel Snuffle Possum: Right-o, tea break– [Music playing]

Skip to 0 minutes and 53 seconds Young Boy: My sister’s gone teenage. [Snarling]

Skip to 1 minute and 3 seconds Young Boy: She’s fiddly obsessed with texting some boy on her phone.

Skip to 1 minute and 10 seconds She takes seven years to get changed. Her perfume bends all the hairs in my nostrils.

Skip to 1 minute and 24 seconds Female Narrator: Edna’s house stood on the edge of the New Fall’s national forest, but by October the trees would stand lifeless like skeletons. The wind howled, shaking the branches which cast ominous shadows.

Skip to 1 minute and 40 seconds On an October night we meet Edna, fire was the only source of heat and light in the house. [Doorbell rings] Ding dong.

Skip to 1 minute and 47 seconds Edna: [gasps]

Skip to 1 minute and 48 seconds Female Narrator: The sound of the doorbell startled Edna but her good nature forced her to see who it was. She was greeted by a young couple.

Skip to 1 minute and 54 seconds Edna: How about a nice cup of hot tea?

Skip to 1 minute and 56 seconds Female Narrator: The couple were on their honeymoon. Edna couldn’t help but feel that she had seen them before.

Skip to 2 minutes and 7 seconds [Music playing]

Types of stop-motion animation

There are a variety of different types of stop-motion animation. Here are some examples created by a variety of schools, projects and age groups.

  • Claymation is probably one of the most commonly recognised forms of animation. It’s the process of creating stop-motion animation using clay or plasticine figures, made famous by Wallace and Gromit, or going back further, the character Morph in the children’s TV series, Take Hart. This process can also include the use of plastic figures such as LEGO or DUPLO figurines.

Character from the animation Ratatouille pulling a face with a mouse in the background

Image credit: Ratatouille (2007)

  • Paper cut-out More often than not this type of animation is shot from above and paper cut-out characters are placed flat on a paper background. Often limbs are connected using split pins to give a full range of movement, and consideration should be given to profile and facial expressions.

Paper cut our image of a man in a blue shirt smiling with caption 'Hello World' behind him

Image credit: Kobu Agency on Unsplash

  • Light box animation is very similar to the above, indeed characters and objects are very often paper cut-outs. However, they are animated on top of a light box which produces a startling effect. If you would like to try out this type of animation, it is important to use thick black card and you can experiment with different coloured acetate. Another possibility is to cover the light box with clear acetate and pour different coloured sands on top that you can move around for a fun hands-on technique!

Light Box image on a prince and princess on a hill amongst the trees

For a little more information and examples of the above, please visit our Filmmaking and Animation in the Classroom online course with FutureLearn. Although this course is not currently open for enrolment we suggest you add it to your Wishlist which means you will be notified when new runs are open for enrolment.

While the materials you use for each of the above differ, the approach is always the same. This is what we’ll be looking at in the next two steps.

In Step 2.16 we’ll focus on creating our own animation with the activity, ‘PIxilation’. This activity will feature pixilation – an animated technique where a human subject is photographed, as a type of ‘human puppet’, doing something physical, such as writing on a piece of paper or a white board, to create an animation. To do this we’ll use the selfie or image you produced in Step 2.12 and animate around it with a range of thoughts, ideas and sentences.

Which type of animation do you think would work best in your literacy class? Please add your thoughts to the Comments section.

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This video is from the free online course:

Developing Literacy: A Journey from Still Image to Film

Into Film