Planning Backwards Model* Teaching Artist Practicum

Name of Project: Animating Poetry: An Animation Collaboration

School/Teacher/Classroom or Arts Organization/Mentor: Carmen Elate

Grade Level or Age of Participants: Ages 12-18

MCAD Teaching Artist: Amabelle Johnson 

Number of Students: 8-10

Visual Arts Content or Standards

Grades 9-12 1. Artistic Foundations

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the foundations of the arts area.

  2. Media Arts 1. Analyze how the elements in media arts such as image, sound, space, time, motion and sequence, are combined to communicate meaning in the creation of, presentation of, or response to media arts.

Curricular Link / Standards (if in a classroom only) Analyze multiple interpretations of a story, drama, or poem (e.g., recorded or live production of a play or recorded novel or poetry), evaluating how each version interprets the source text. (Include at least one play by Shakespeare and one play by an American dramatist.)

Overview of Project

Students will be animating to a 3-4 lined poem about their safe space. Students will animate through an app, FlipaClip, as well as learning three animation techniques (loops, morphing, and rotoscoping).


“Big Ideas”/ Essential QUESTION(s)

  • How is visual art and poetry similar? How can they relate?

  • What can animation teach others?  

  • How does collaboration engage ideas and support work?

  • What is a safe space to you?

Student Outcome Objectives

Students will:

  1. Write a 3-4 poem based on the theme of safe space (what does that mean to you? What is your safe space?, etc.)

  2. Create a digital animation through FlipAClip based on the student’s written poem.

  3. Learn three animation techniques – Morphing, Looping, Rotoscoping

Prior Knowledge

  • How basic 2D animation is created

  • Know contemporary examples of animation

  • How to create a coherent 3-4 lined poem

Lesson Preparation Timeline 

  • Download FlipAClip onto CRTC IPads

  • Order mesh pens for drawing – Purchase through Amazon

  • Create PowerPoints (Day 1, 2, 3)

  • Create example (poem, sketches, animation, audio)

  • Rehearse presentation

Examples of Artwork

 Day 1: 2D Animation/Animating poetry

Day 2: FlipAClip DEMO


Day 3: Technique

  • Loops: Youtube Animators (Sir Fluff, birb.bandit)

  • Morphing: MCAD Valentines Morphing Collab

  • Rotoscoping: Take on Me by A-HA, my examples



  • We will know that students learned through this lesson when they:

  • Create a 3-4 poem according to the theme (safe space)

  • Finish a complete animation with audio – min: 10 seconds

  • Successfully work together in collaboration (working in groups is encouraged)

  • Problem solve issues in FlipAClip

  • Take this information to make more animations in the future


  • IPads (provided by CRTC)

  • Mesh tipped iPad touch pens ct.8 (Amazon) - $10

Learning Activities and Timing

Week 1: Intro to Project and Research & Concept

        DAY ONE: Intro to Project (12:30 pm – 2:00pm) (45 min per class)

  • Examples of 2D animation (from Disney to Contemporary) (5 min)

  • Animating Poetry: (To this Day, Troll, Pretty) (5 min)

  • Intro to Project: (5 min)

      • Theme: What is a safe space to you? (5 min)

      • My example: (Poem, sketches, animation, audio.) (5 min)

      • Questions? 

  • Students will start developing a 3-5 lined poem/blurb


Day 2: Starting Animation (12:30 pm – 2:00pm) (45 min per class)

  • Brief overview of last lesson (1 min)

  • Intro to FlipaClip DEMO (15 min)

  • Examples

  • Questions?


Day 3: Animation Techniques DEMO: Loops, Morphs, Rotoscope (12:30 pm – 2:00pm)

  • Brief overview of last lesson (1 min)

  • Examples/Demo (5 min PER demo = 15 min total)

  • Questions?

  • Students will be developing sketches/drawings

Week 2-3: Continue Working on Poem/Animation


Week 4: Adding Audio & Editing

  • Adding audio DEMO (10 min)

  • Troubleshooting animation in time with audio (5 min)


Week 5: Presentation!! Friday gathering

Teaching Artist Reflection

Problems I will anticipate is students getting distracted or discouraged from animating. It is a hard medium, so I expect some students might get discouraged. Also, students not knowing where to start is another issue I expect; however, constant encouragement in this community is essential. This fits within the curriculum as the students will be finishing up their stop-motion animation project. They will have prior knowledge on certain animation terminology and how animation is created. They’ll begin learning a new technique!

The students’ work will be shared with a larger community by putting on screening within the CRTC for students and teachers to see.

I will receive feedback through Carmen, Lynda, and my peers.