I have put together my first ever unit study for the 5th grader. I’m sharing it here.
Unit Study on Animation
Activity 1: The Origins of Animation
- Read about Eadweard Muybridge’s 1872 experiment, The Horse in Motion
- Look at pictures of the Zoopraxiscope and watch this mini documentary by Walt Disney showing the evolution of film up through Émile Reynaud and his Théâtre Optique in Paris (1892). This also includes Stuart Blackton’s Humorous Phases of Funny Faces (1906) and The Enchanted Drawing (1900) using Thomas Armat / Edison’s Vitascope.
- Watch the first films of the Lumiere brothers from 1895 to see the evolution of film.
- Watch Georges Méliès’ film A Trip to the Moon which mixed stop-motion and single-frame photography with live-action film for magical effect. (1902). [extra art activity: Photo Tinting]
- See also Émile Cohl’s Fantasmagorie (1908) and Winsor McCay’s Little Nemo (1911).
- The next incarnation of the motion camera is the Rotoscope invented by the Fleishman brothers in 1915, creators of Betty Boop (1930). This invented a new technique of animating over live action. (Helen Kane, the inspiration for Betty Boop – just good fun to watch!)
- In 1928, the Disney Studios produce Steamboat Willie, the first animated film synchronised with sound.
Art: Ask student to create his own “flip book.” I had my son watch these for inspiration:
(stick figure, simple)
(Gangnam Style, elaborate)
This is what he came up with:
Comprehension: Have student do this activity http://www.oscars.org/education-outreach/teachersguide/animation/pdf/anim_act1.pdf
Writing: Have student write about what s/he learned (Journal)
Today we learned the history of animation. I learned that the first animated film was “stop motion”. A man wanted to know if a horse goes airborne when it runs. (It does). I also learned that one of the first films had cartoon characters.
Then I listened to Hugo as an audio book. The story I was listening to is called Hugo Cabret. The story was about a boy trying to make a kind of a robot. It’s a great story and I really enjoyed it.
Science: Learn more about the Persistence of Vision experiment
We used the France: Enchantment of the world books by Scholastic (Don Nardo and Liz Sonneborn respectively) from the library.
A Ticket to France by Tom Streissguth.
Discovering Geography: Maps by David L. Stienecker
More to come on this. Stay tuned for parts 2-3.