Teaching Tips from Our Educators

Posted by cemignano on

BrainPOP Educators is full of resources designed to support your use of our content and features in the classroom and beyond. As a community, you’re able to comment on our resources and we love to hear what you have to say! We read each and every comment and wanted to take some time to share a few of our favorites. Check out some of these teaching tips shared by educators on our Ideas for Teaching pages for BrainPOP and BrainPOP Jr. . Don’t forget to share your own ideas in the comments section below!

  • It could be a fun idea to assign a certain student a challenge to act as Moby’s interpreter. Using context clues, inference skills, and Annie’s dialogue, students can “translate” Moby’s beeps, pausing the video and logging the video-time. – Jed Stefanowicz
  • Kids could do the Pair Share for the BrainPOP Jr. Movie of the Week App and then do an App Smash response by creating a presentation using one of the apps on their iPad! – Sara Coons
  • My students would love to write their own quiz. They enjoy testing each other’s knowledge. Have students write their own questions for quizzes and add them to class quizzes using the Quiz Mixer. – Denyse Holloway
  • I’d love to have my students extend their learning after watching a BrainPOP movie by choosing a specific topic they learned about and creating a product digitally such as a book or choosing a storytelling app such as SockPuppets. They could retell important parts and ideas. Retelling is an important skill for my little learners, and this would reinforce what they learned. – Wendy J Sanders
  • For classrooms with mobile devices or classroom computers, create a contest where students receive points for completing certain tasks: # of video views, variety of subjects, # of activities completed, etc. Each week, crown a new BrainPOP champion. – Beth Bedee
  • In my classroom, I have a large A, B, C, and D printed on cardstock and posted around the classroom in each corner. When we take a quiz all together, the students move to the corner that corresponds with their answer choice. Everyone gets to participate and everyone gets to move! I love to see easily who picked which answer. – C Carluen
  • We are now starting a peer tutoring system in 4th grade. The idea is that those who excel can pair with those who struggle and give them a different perspective of the topics being covered. One of the tools we have been using is BrainPOP. We are asking our “tutors” to design their own lessons with the available material. Everyone is so excited about it. Kids who are struggling are reinforcing with videos and games guided by other kids. And those who usually excel have found a new challenge. – Carolina Ferro
  • We use BrainPOP Jr. on our interactive whiteboard to watch videos and take quizzes. I want to try using Plickers (“paper clickers”) to have the students answer each question of the quiz. I could also just have them write their answer choices on whiteboards and hold them up to show their answers. This is a good way to make sure everyone is engaged in the activity. – Nikki Vradenburg
  • Use a BrainPOP Jr. movie as a starting point and have the students work together to think of what other questions they would ask Moby about the given topic. Then check BrainPOP and other resources to try and find the answers. – Okle Miller
  • Have students make a map of what they know about a topic before watching the video. Have them come up with what they found out from the movie and add it to the map in a different color. Any further questions that still remain can be entered in another color and the answers can be researched on the internet. Questions bring up more questions, making this “The Ever-Expanding Mind Map of________” (Insert topic name or student name if individual project, in the space provided.) – Jean Capuano
  • Before introducing a new topic, create your own custom quiz using the Mixer. Questions would cover key ideas from the upcoming unit. This tool would be used to assess your students’ current knowledge of the topic and help to guide lesson planning. – Hugh Hughes
  • Create a QR Resource page with some basic thought provoking sentence stems to match specific videos ( e.g.: Famous Historical Figures) where teams of students have to help Moby track down additional interesting facts about the historical figure(s). The QR codes would be scanned by the students and taking them to several reliable resources. After reading additional information and completing the sentence stems they, as Moby’s detectives, would then have to write a short “addition” using evidence based text, say several sentences, as if to add to the video. Each group could then share the written portion to flesh out and build additional background about the historical figure. – Kim Douberley
  • I love the idea of pairing students up at a BrainPOP station for collaboration and discussion. Students can take turns pausing the video and discussing a question or idea pertaining to the video. They could help each other and take the quiz at the end. The team could then come up with a few quiz questions of their own to add to the original quiz. The teacher can then take the questions from each group and create a mixed quiz for the class to take after everyone completes the activity. – Melissa Simecek
  • I like the idea of using your interactive whiteboard/ flat panel for the place that students play GameUp games in a station rotation. Having the game on the large display in front of other students gives students motivation to do well, but also allows the teacher to work with other small groups of students, but simultaneously monitor the students that are “playing.” Keeping tabs on the game that they are playing and how they are working together will be easier on the large display but will also give them some ownership in their performance. – Casey Rimmer
  • If the class were learning about original sources or how to create a bibliography, students could be tasked with serving as “Fact Checkers”. They could choose one fact that was mentioned in the video. Then, they could search for one original source that supports the accuracy of the fact. They would cite the source using an MLA or APA format. Students could then create a class bibliography that provides evidence to support the facts mentioned in the video. – Susan Taylor-Alonso
  • One idea I have for classroom use is to have the students start their concept map on a topic using the Make-a-Map tool before watching the video. This will allow them time to think about the concept and what they already know so that they can make a better connection to the video. Then revisit and make changes. The students might better connect their ideas to the concepts being covered. As you progress through a unit, students can then revisit their map and add new understandings! – Nick DeBoer
  • I personally loved the Related Reading Section that built more knowledge into a BrainPOP topic. In my classes we use what I call a “Message Board,” much like you are seeing here! This online, classroom community question based assignment is used in Edmodo, but using Google Classroom and Schoology platforms would also work. Many of the Related Reading Sections pose a question at the end- I think answering these where students could respond and expand on their thoughts is an amazing teaching opportunity that will allow students to explore the topic more in-depth as well as learn how to communicate properly online. – Aimee Bloom
  • My idea is for students to storyboard a Tim and Moby video on paper, on any topic that they are learning about. They can use the same format as a BrainPOP video- Tim reading a letter and Moby acting out what he is talking about, ending with Moby doing something silly- but incorporate their own knowledge about another topic. You can call the kids “animators” and offer to send the best ones to BrainPOP to give them ideas for new videos! – Julie Kaplan