Voice Animation


Voki

Voki enables your students to express themselves on the web with their own voices using talking avatars. Your students can customize their Voki to look like themselves or to take on the identity of other types of characters or historical figures that you're reading about in class. (Beware of the "edgy" avatar characters in Voki when using this in the classroom). Your avatar can speak with your students' voices which is added through a microphone, an upload, or a phone.

How to Get Started

1. Register at www.voki.com/
2. Once you're logged in, click ‘Get Started’
3. Change your character by following the arrows until you find the one you like.
4. You can change hair, clothing, bling, the background, the color of the player, etc.
5. When you're satisfied with the appearance of your avatar, click DONE
6. Now, give it a voice! You can either record directly into the Voki, by clicking on the microphone and RECORD. You could also browse for a previously recorded sound file such as one you've recorded with Audacity or Garageband.
7. Click DONE when you have finished.
8. Now click PUBLISH.
9. Give your creation a name and click SAVE
10. Close the small box in the center of the screen and highlight the code you are given to post on your blog or Wiki. Your Voki can also be sent to others via email.

Fotobabble

Create talking photos in three easy steps for free.
Welcome_to_Fotobabble_-_Talking_Photos.jpg


Read the Words

Read the Words is another talking avatar site. You simply type in your text, and your talking avatar will read your message. You have the option to email, embed, or create a podcast with your recording. One drawback is that you're only allowed three recordings with the free service. There is a fee if you have more than three audio files at a time. Also, I had to play around with the html code when I embedded it on my Wiki. I used the Blogger code and changed the settings to 300 height in order for the entire avatar to embed.

Blabberize

Blabberize is a Web 2.0 tool that I recently learned about at the Discovery Education Virtual Conference. Blabberize will allow your students to animate photographs or scanned illustrations to make the object appear that it's speaking. This is another great way to motivate your students with their writing and speaking skills if you can get it unblocked in your district.

First grade Blabber examples from Traci Blazosky's class
Second grade example of kids telling about chickens
Step-by-Step Guide from Traci Blazosky


How To Blabberize
1. Go to http://www.blabberize.com and sign up for a free account.
2. Once you've logged in, click Make at the top of the page.
3. Click on the Blabber Classic link.
4. Click browse and upload a picture (or a student's illustration scanned as a jpg).
5. Click Allow for the camera/microphone access.
6. Click the little black head on the bottom left.
7. Move the circles around the mouth until you get them just right (this is the hardest part for me.)
8. Drag the green square to set the size of your Blabber.
9. Click on the microphone icon and choose how you want to record your sound. I have a MacBook, so I use its built in mic.
10. When you're finished recording, click on the envelope icon to preview your Blabber. If you're happy with it, click Save and give it a title, description, and tag. I always set my Blabbers to be private. Then click Save once again.
11. Now, you're ready to copy and paste the html code to share your Blabber.

PowerPoint
Don't forget that PowerPoint also has a recording feature. Students can import pictures or use clip art and create a narrated story using their voices.