How it works:
In this program, students learn how to make GIF animations using Photoshop
and Image Ready software. GIF stands for "Graphics Interchange
Format," but the process is much easier than it initially
sounds. The GIF format stores multiple
frames of illustration that give the appearance of movement when
the frames are displayed individually. GIF animation is most often
seen in those often-annoying Internet pop-up ads, but the format can
be put to a much more constructive--and enjoyable--use! The first project is very simple--making an animated bouncing ball. The assignments get progressively
more difficult as students add backgrounds and work with several
layers of color. The students really enjoy this format because they don't have to
be artists to create these illustrations.
Students use technology tools to enhance learning, increase
productivity, and promote creativity. They collaborate in constructing
technology-enhanced models, prepare publications, and produce other
At least one computer with an Internet connection and Photoshop and
Image Ready software is needed.
Students of all abilities from sixth grade and up would enjoy this
program. Students who learn fast can continue the lessons at their own
GIF Animation enables students to be creative while
engaging in a difficult process. Students are highly motivated since
the end product is so satisfying.
Don't be afraid to experiment and allow the students to alter the
assignments. This program requires some bravery, since most teachers
do not know this topic very well. Take the risk! The kids will
love it and forgive any lack of expertise. (There are various
Internet site that supply information and ideas on this subject.) When
working with computers, make sure the students save their work often.
About the teacher:
Laura Anderson is a Math/Computer teacher at West Side High School, an
alternative school in New York City. Laura has a bachelors degree in
business and a master's degree in curriculum and instruction from the
University of Houston. She is a fully certified NYS Math Teacher and
has been teaching for 20 years.