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An Animated Understanding: Climate Change and Equity in the Elementary Classroom

Pennsylvania Convention Center, Terrace Ballroom Lobby, Table 28

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Science Teacher & Equity & Engagement Co
Cathedral School f St John the Divine
I am a Science Teacher and Equity & Engagement Coordinator who is dedicated to weaving conversations about diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging seamlessly into science curricula in order to challenge current societal perceptions of who can pursue careers and contribute to the knowledge in this field. It is my aim to work with our youngest learners to them understand help reshape the systems within our society in a way that can lead to a more equitable world.

Session description

Get an overview of a first-grade stop motion animation lesson on climate change and learn about its effect in a global community. Attendees will learn to use the Stop Motion Studio app, meaningfully integrate technology into elementary school classroom, differentiate learning, and have conversations around equity in first grade classroom.

Purpose & objective

The purpose of my presentation is to give teachers a meaningful way in which they can integrate technology into an elementary school classroom.

-Participants will be able start a new project in the Stop Motion Studio app, create a brief but comprehensive video responding to a prompt, and export that video to their email
-Participants will be able to identify the time and tools with which it will take to teach their own students introductory stop motion skills
-Participants will be able to identify at least one unit in their curriculum that could accommodate the time commitment of students using stop motion animation
-Participants will be able to identify at least one unit of study where stop motion animation could be an effective alternative tool for expression for their learners
-Participants will understand the budgetary requirements to acquire iPads, stands, and any additional animation tools desired for teaching stop motion

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(7 mins)
Here I will greet participants and let them know that in our session, I will take them on a fast forwarded journey in how I scaffold teaching of stop motion to first graders. I will let them know that this unit on stop motion follows our unit about climate change. I will explain to I facilitate the equal division of the participants throughout the room so they may share the materials that I will provide or use their own.

SKILL SESSION 1: Free exploration
(10 mins)
At this time, I will introduce the participants to the concept of stop motion through the visual of a handheld flip book. Then I will show them the very minimal basics of the stop motion app (opening a project, renaming it, and using the camera button feature, playback feature). I will allow them to explore freely and impress upon them the need for their students to have this free explore time to get their excitement out about the newness of the technology.

EXAMPLES: I will show them an example of my students work at their stage.
(2 mins)

Skill Session 2: Core Rules of Stop Motion
(10 mins)
Here we will discuss what are some of the most crucial rules and skills to implement when making a video: Keeping the camera and film set steady, keep body parts out of the photos, and focus on small incremental movements of characters. I will allow participants to free explore once more while focusing on these skills. Here I will also provide them with an open ended prompt such as "Make a video that tells you audience a simple story they can understand" (Ex. the person get into a taxi and went to the grocery store.)

EXAMPLES: I will show them an example of my students work at their stage.
(2 mins)

SKILL SESSION 3: Make a video with a purpose
(15 mins)
Here we will discuss how the students put their skills together to create a video about the effects of climate change and what we can do to be positive change in the situation. Here I will instruct participants to create a video about what is our role as adults in the issue on climate change.

SHARE: Participants will share their work with each other
(10 mins)

EXAMPLES: I will show them two examples of my students work at the final stage. ( 2 mins)

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Supporting research

-Poverty & Climate Change: Reducing the Vulnerability of the Poor Through Adaptation

-Climate Change And The Developing World: A Disproportionate Impact

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Session specifications

Equity and inclusion
Grade level:
Skill level:
Curriculum/district specialists, Teachers
Attendee devices:
Devices useful
Attendee device specification:
Tablet: Android, iOS
Participant accounts, software and other materials:

Subject area:
Social studies, STEM/STEAM
ISTE Standards:
For Educators:
  • Use technology to create, adapt and personalize learning experiences that foster independent learning and accommodate learner differences and needs.
For Students:
Knowledge Constructor
  • Students build knowledge by actively exploring real-world issues and problems, developing ideas and theories and pursuing answers and solutions.
Creative Communicator
  • Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.