ChatterPix is not a new app, but I recently rediscovered it when completing a project for one of my grad school classes. I was instantly thrilled to find it again because it is extremely versatile, user friendly, and really fun!
What Is ChatterPix?
ChatterPix is a free app available for Apple and Android that allows the user to create a talking picture. It is ideal for sharing information in a fun way that will get your students excited.
How Does ChatterPix Work?
To create a talking picture you:
- Choose one of the app’s pictures or upload your own from your camera roll
- Draw your mouth where you want it to be on the picture
- Record your information for up to thirty seconds
- Listen to your recording and either accept it or try again
- Add any stickers you may want
- Publish and share your talking photo
The app itself has a fantastic tutorial in the beginning, but to be honest, I think most students will intuitively know how to do it, because it is that simple.
Why Do I Think It Is So Great?
This app is simple to use and allows you to create an original piece to share information. Just thinking about all the ways it could be used in the classroom have my brain spinning. The best part is, it is free and so easy to use, students of just about any age can use it.
There’s Got To Be A Catch, Right?
Well, the only downfall I can think of is that you only have thirty seconds to record. This is quite short, but it makes sure you only have time for the most important information. This can be a lesson in editing all in and of itself.
You Said You Had Ideas…
I told you my head was spinning with ideas on how to use ChatterPix, and while I could list one hundred, I thought I would provide you with ten to get your own juices working.
- Share character thoughts and feelings from a book you are reading using an illustration of the character.
- Explain the life cycle of an organism. (My example of this one can be found below.)
- Share biographical information about a historical figure using their photo.
- Give a book recommendation using a photo of the cover of the book or an illustration from inside.
- Explain a cycle of the Earth including night and day, the water cycle, or the phases of the moon.
- Give directions on how to solve a math problem.
- Create an introduction of yourself to others using your own photo.
- Explain how technology has changed over time with a photo of the type of technology you are detailing.
- Share a narrative from the perspective of your pet or a house plant.
- Detail the timeline of an invention with a photo of the invention.
There are so many more ways to use this app to get students thinking and creating their own talking photos. Check out my example of the life cycle of a radish.
How I Would Have My Students Create A ChatterPix Project:
I am going to use my example from above of the radish’s life cycle including having students research to find the information.
Begin by introducing students to the ABCD website evaluation acronym. They will pull up a website and go through each evaluation point using the website.
- Who is the author and what authority or expertise do they have?
- Does the website show bias?
- What is the content of the site?
- What date was it published? Is it current?
After going through one website together, students will work in table teams or individually to evaluate another website and then share their thoughts with the class with the teacher giving feedback along the way.
Then inform students they will be using this criterion to evaluate the website they use to research their organism’s life cycle.
After sharing their own ChatterPix as an example, the teacher will walk through the steps of the product creation.
- Use your research to write a script in Google Docs. Be sure to cite your resources too.
- Having students write a script and tell you where their information comes from is an important part of this project that will not only hold students accountable but will also serve them throughout their education.
- Locate a photo of your organism and take a screenshot making sure to give credit to the photographer in your sources.
- Open the app and select “Take Photo” then choose the square image to the left of the yellow camera button and select your screenshot from the camera roll. Then press the next button.
- Choose where to draw your mouth. Then press next.
- Use your script to record the life cycle of your organism. You will have 30 seconds to record.
- Listen to your recording to make sure you are happy with it. You may re-record the script if you are not happy with it, then press next.
- You may add stickers or filters to your recording.
- Save your ChatterPix and recording to your Google Drive and post a link on your GoogleDoc.
Evaluating Student Products
Before students get started with their project, be sure to share your expectations with them. I would recommend a simple checklist students can use to make sure they do everything they need to.
Items on the checklist for the organism life cycle project might include:
- Selecting an appropriate organism
- Choosing a fitting photograph or illustration
- A clearly written script
- Including all phases of the organism’s life cycle
- Using academic vocabulary when appropriate
- Speaking clearly
- Staying on topic
- Citation of sources
I have a simple checklist-style rubric with these same criteria you are welcome to edit and use. It can be found here. Please make sure to make a copy before editing.
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