Recently I have been interested in using comics to liven up my teaching and my marking. A couple of days ago I was writing about Comic Life, a piece of software that allows you to create comic strips using photos stored in your computer. Well, today what brings me to you is www.toondoo.com a website that allows the user to create their own comic strips and even comic books using the templates provided or using your own pictures.
Above is a screenshot of the interface that allows you to pick characters, backgrounds, speechbubbles, etc. What I really like about it is that if you can’t find a character that you want to use you can either create your own using the TRAITR widget on the top right and then save it to use again in the future or you can upload your own character and pictures.
I have to admit that this is not probably the best use of time in the ICT room, since the pupils are likely to get carried away by all the changing shapes, hair colour and facial expressions, not to mention all the rude content in the speech bubbles! What I have done is use this website to design posters to put up in my classroom with some classroom rules. Here are a couple of examples (I am sorry, it’s all in Spanish, but you get the idea!):
Raise you hand if you want to speak
Don’t talk when your teacher is talking
For now, I am sticking to teacher use. As well as classroom rules posters, I intend to start using it to practise role-plays and to introduce vocabulary, perhaps leaving the speech bubbles blank and ask the pupils to come up with captions Have I got news for you – style. Perhaps, as suggested in my previous post, it could make a nice little homework project. Did I mention it’s free?