Thursday, June 17, 2010

Talking Avatar Videos

I know this is not a new device and many people use it but I thought I would share some ideas anyway. The Logitech webcam offers a great function.



You can choose from a range of avatars and the camera calibrates to your face. This makes the avatar move with you, the eyes blink when you blink and the mouth moves as you speak. The webcam has a built in microphone allowing you to film and record a voice at the same time. Here are a few of the avatar options.



It is very easy to use, simply select the avatar and sit in front of the webcam, you need a well lit and quiet area. I encourage students to practice first and then record. Students may need to do a few takes. The video saves to the computer. Using this device is fun to use and encourages students to practice their speaking skills.  It is also useful because you don't need a classroom of computers.  All you need is access to one lap top or a computer and one web cam, students can take turns using it.


Here are a few ideas on how to use it in the classroom

Student use:
  • Reflection of a task
  • Reflection of an excursion or camp
  • Research task
  • Book review
  • Use in a poetry unit, write and recite a poem about one of the avatars
  • An alternative to an oral presentation for students who are not comfortable
  • Read a book to share with younger year levels
  • Read out a story they have written
  • Speak as though they are a character from a story eg. Gingerbread man
  • Use to practice speaking languages other than English
  • Add to a PowerPoint presentation
  • Add to a blog or Glog
  • Use as an introduction to a movie or animation students are making
 Teacher use:

  • Project on a screen or IWB at the beginning of the lesson to gain students attention
  • Use to give instructions
  • Give hints to a new unit of work
  • Add to a virtual classroom
  • Add to PowerPoint presentation
  • Use at a staff meeting
  • Use at a Subject selection night

4 comments:

Emily Starr, CEO StarrMatica.com said...

I wasn't aware this existed. How cool! I love your ideas for its use in the classroom. I wonder if there is any way to create and upload your own avatar? I'm thinking of a talking star for StarrMatica.:)

Mrs. Tenkely said...

Wow! I had no idea that you could record a talking, moving avatar like this. This is such a great way for teachers to record younger students. This way student work could be shared on the Internet without worrying about some of the privacy issues associated with putting a childs actual picture online. Very cool!

Anni said...

I love your blog and the posts always look amazing. I have a question for you: Do you use a particular application to paste web grabs with links onto your pages? It doesn't seem to be just a jpg that you've linked. Would love to know. Anni.

dashka said...

as for me I use Video Avatar (geovid.com)

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