Saturday, March 9, 2013

PuppetPals App - Uses in MFL Classroom

Are you looking for a new idea to introduce a unit or a way to incorporate newly introduced vocabulary into your lesson?  iPad has many apps that allow you to be as creative without having to be extremely tech savvy.  One app that meets this description is the PuppetPals app.  

This morning (when I was avoiding writing lesson plans), I created a new video with the PuppetPals app relating to Chac Mool.  It was fresh on my mind due to a tweet last night from @esantacruz13 with a link to a video and a blog post with 5 embedded readings of Chac Mool written by Kristy Placido (@placido on Twitter).  

In not much time, and little effort, I made the following video.  Thanks to Carrie Toth (@senoraCMT) and Kristy Placido (@placido) for starring (unknowingly at first) and for granting me permission to post it on my blog!

Click HERE to see video.

PuppetPals is free, however, I strongly recommend that you purchase the "Director's Pass" for a few dollars.  With the director's pass, you can upload your own photos for backgrounds or for characters.

Last semester I read, Piratas, by Mira Canion and Carol Gaab. With PuppetPals and its backdrop of a pirate ship and pirate characters, the next time I read this book with my students I will be able to create a conversation between the characters or, even more interesting for the students, add a photo of one of my students in the story for him/her to  "interview" one of the characters.
With the purchase of the Director's Pass, this app will allow you and your students, to quickly create short videos relating to any topic you are currently studying.  

Other available themes (backdrops and characters) are western, community, fairy tales, aliens, and several others.  An example of using your own backdrop and characters is in the photo below on the bottom left.  It is a screenshot from a video in which the cow and duck are looking for the girl that usually feeds them because they are hungry.  While they are talking about her and asking where, she flies across the top of the screen, unnoticed by both animals.  That is just the beginning of the ways in which you can be creative with this app.

If you have the app or decide to buy it and make a video for class, I would love it if you would share some of YOUR ideas and YOUR videos.  

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