Quote of the Month

When love and skill work together, expect a miracle. John Ruskin

Thursday, June 30, 2011


Having read several reviews, Parents' Choice, Children's Media and Toy Reviews since 1978, and iLearn Technology, studied it as part of the Free Tools Challenge, Teacher Challenge at the Edublogs site and this week  receiving the designation as one of the Top 25 Websites for Teaching and Learning by the American Association for School Librarians during the ALA annual conference in New Orleans, Kerpoof needed to be explored in depth.

Kerpoof is owned and operated by the Walt Disney Company.  As an online group of design activities it offers users the option of Spell a Picture, Make a Movie, Make a Card, Make a Drawing, Make a Picture and Tell a Story.  In other words these free applications extend to users the ability to discover, create and learn in an environment that is safe and fun for the recommended grades of K-8.  Each creation button includes the recommended grade level for use.

First try out the site by clicking on the How to Play question mark at the top of the screen.  View the two tutorials on Make a Movie and Make a Picture, and read the Top 10 Questions along with the Tips and Tricks section. 

Initially registration consists of choosing a screen name, password and two secret questions and answers. Click on the blank avatar icon to do this.  Children can create their own accounts but parent involvement and permission is required.  By having an account scenes can be saved, shared or emailed to others. (All shared content is reviewed by trained moderators before it is shown on the site.)

 After educators have their own individual login, they can proceed to apply for a teacher account which requires their full name, professional email, title and school district in which they are employed. (Just click on the For Educators button.) Having a teacher account allows registration of students in one or more classes, management of those student accounts by class, multiple collaboration features and the required option to monitor activities within those accounts.

Also by clicking on the For Educators button a series of buttons appear across the top of the screen.  These provide, in addition to opening a teacher account,  an overview of Kerpoof, lesson plans, general classroom ideas, matching Kerpoof to national and some state technology standards, signing up for an e-newsletter and reading newletter archives from November 2007, a general FAQ section and the choice to contact the people at Kerpoof.

I would encourage perusal of the Kerpoof Scholastics Teachers' Guide as well as each of the lesson plans on using the individual elements of this suite. 

I have applied for a teacher account and will be using Kerpoof as part of lessons given within the library media center during the 2011-2012 school year.  Check out this video, experiment and have fun making your own creations or plans for implementing Kerpoof in the classroom.

To have all these tools together in this environment giving users or students the ability to transform those ideas, dreams or thoughts from their imaginations through graphics and writing is an educational plus.

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