Comic CPD

March 24, 2009 § Leave a comment

Today the ICT team delivered 3 INSET sessions. Onenote, Moviemaker and I delivered Comic Life. I have not seen the summary of the feedback but the staff seemed pleased. What I felt it worked well was the ability for staff opted into a training session of their choosing, everyone in my sessions seemed generally pleased to be there.

Preparation: Gather a collection of fun images (Gromit and Toystory) for staff use and store them on the shared area. Find a student created comic although there are plenty of tagged examples on Flickr, the link to the Comic Life help files (via F1) and planned that give the staff 85% hands on access to Comic Life.

Overview: We introduced the staff to the fantastic contraption, a transition period to allow staff time to wind down from teaching and accommodate late comers.

We them gave a very brief of what Comic Life had to offer and gave the staff a 4 minute introduction to the floor plan of Comic Life; templates, word bubbles, how to access images and lettering.  After a quick demonstration how to access the images I sourced (no faffing around) and let them get on with. Its hard for me, but I gave them 10 minutes uninterupted playtime.

With a basic page contructed we showed them how to bring pictures forward and back and add effects to the speech bubbles. Then we demonstrated how to add filters to pictures. Really there is little support need, just a gentle guidance and reassurance, it is such an easy product to use. We finished by showing them how to export their comic and explaining the reasons and the fact that it was now a non-editable file.

We finished we a brief ‘ideas’ session on how Comic Life could be utilised in their curriculum areas and this was sent to the Assistant Headteacher in charge of training. Just look at the potential, there is real value to this product going whole school.

Art – newsletters, posters, instructions and guides,
Maths – How tos – anything different from writing on the board. Big visuals, worksheets and homework, memorising equations.
Drama – performance planning, performance phobic, character sketches
English – Lots of uses, anything with a  narrative, set scenes, books reviews (library), media (comics)
Geography – Enquiries (topic / question, research leads to – Who killed Chico Mendez), decision making exercises, create resources for KS3,
History – Posters, displays, storyboarding of historical events (FF) Historical cartoons,
Music – Musicals (storyboard)
PSRE – Just 17 style comics

Was it a success? A number of staff asked if they could have a copy on their laptops (result) and today I spoke with a member of staff from the English Department who plans to experiment and create comic scenes from The Tempest.

Comic Life really is a simple, effective, cost effective, cross-curricular resource, how many more boxes can it tick. 250 licencses are just £275 or 100o licenses are just £549 – pound per potential thats great value. With a FREE 30 day trial, students could even use it at home for a one off piece of coursework at no cost. We plan to introduce it into Year 8 ICT/L2L/PSRE curriculum to support those departments thinking of trying something new today.

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