About the author: John Dabell was a primary school teacher and then an Ofsted inspector. He now works as a writer, editor and resource reviewer.
If you are looking for colourful, affordable technology to inspire creative play and learning then the award-winning HUE Animation Studio movie-making starter kit is the perfect gift for children aged 7-13.
This clever kit includes the HUE HD camera, HUE Animation stop motion software for Windows and macOS and a 60-page full colour book bursting full of ideas, offers endless and exciting possibilities for 21st century learners.
To join the HUE giveaway and have a chance to win a HUE Animation Studio see the end of this article.
Here are 10 reasons why HUE Animation Studio makes a perfect gift:
1. Learning through Balanced Play
HUE Animation Studio places kids in a highly engaging and immersive environment. This is proactive and experiential learning at its best where children can enjoy the freedom to express themselves and explore new skills. Stop motion animation is great for creating pretend worlds. Its play potential is huge and Amanda Gummer from Fundamentally Children puts HUE Animation Studio at the top of a balanced play diet.
“Our Balanced Play Pyramid helps parents understand the need to give children a healthy balance of play activities. It also helps remove some of the stigma around tech-based play. Products such as HUE Animation Studio promote the imaginative, social, child-led play that is so beneficial to children’s development, and has an important place in a child’s balanced diet of play.“
– Dr Amanda Gummer, Fundamentally Children
2. Hands-on: creative and absorbing
HUE’s Animation Studio is a roll your sleeves up and get stuck in resource that is incredibly tactile. This is a practical gift that naturally invites children to have a go, tinker and touch. They can create their own physical backgrounds, stages and characters, or simply use something they already have like LEGO™. Children love the thrill of creating animations and they can do it for hours!
Whilst animating children are cognitively engaged and actively learning, visualising and creatively problem solving. They are also improving complex and critical skills like using technology, thinking, decision-making, language and communication.
Technical skills include importing files, recording their own voices and sound effects, adding text and special effects, copying and editing animation frames, time lapse, green screening and onion skinning.
Animation also encourages an eye for detail and requires them to break processes down into component pieces and take things step-by-step. Working out the details enables them to understand what transforms an idea from vision into reality and improves their visual attention.
Here’s what Gareth Boldsworth at LEGO Education Europe says:
“Anything that allows children to get hands-on and creative will always get a big thumbs up from me. Expression and communication are so important in children’s development and HUE Animation supports these key areas. It will no doubt inspire children to follow creative career paths but also bring fun into their learning. It is also extremely affordable and great value for money. A job well done!“
4. Feeds storytelling
HUE Animation Studio is a powerful resource for helping children build their narrative skills and play with time and space. It’s all about making and creating stories and breathing life into them. Storyboarding and building scenes requires children to think about how to arrange story elements (background, characters, objects, etc.) and teaches them sequencing and chronological patterning of content to make great stories.
5. Challenging and confidence building
Children can experience immediate success using HUE Animation Studio but there’s plenty to learn such as techniques like special effects (explosions) and some tricks of the trade like making objects fly or disappear.
There are plenty of tutorials to help as well to make sure that you are never left high and dry.
Stop motion animation provides golden opportunities to introduce children to the world of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics. They can animate any subject and the relationships between ideas can be clearly demonstrated. As they develop their skills and ideas so their confidence increases.
6. Fab for families and gender neutral
HUE Animation Studio is perfect for creative kids and fun-loving adults too and effortlessly involves the whole family as an interactive and versatile. It is accessible to anyone and everyone and isn’t gender specific.
It’s a great way for parents and grandparents and their children to bond by animating together. Why not use the kit for making movies about your family adventures like this brilliant animation from Elizabeth Atia’s holiday to Unst.
You will have happy family memories which last forever.
7. Inclusive for SEN and teaches diversity
Making animations is especially beneficial for individuals with dyslexia, autism spectrum disorder and intellectual disabilities. It is a perfect activity to meet a range of special needs because of the non-linguistic language. It’s great for teaching empathy and improving listening skills. Here’s what Workshops Manager Liz Whitaker has to say at Follow Your Dreams, a UK charity that supports children with learning disabilities:
“Fantastic animation kit! I use these for group animation workshops for disabled children and young people and they are so simple to use, the children really engage with them. We have made some really impressive work with these and the accompanying hints and tips book is great for learning techniques. The flip-down set included on the box is really useful too! Very highly recommended for group activities or for a gift.“
8. Inspiring and Fun
HUE Animation is ‘edutaining’ and this makes learning and picking up skills fun, both in the process and in the completion. Children can constantly hone their craft by engaging with different enjoyable projects. This is why they keep on going back for more!
Developing filmmaking skills can inspire children to pursue a career in animation, digital media, film and cinematics
9. It’s a Homeschooling Hit
HUE Animation Studio is a very cost-effective resource suitable for homeschooling and popular with parents and tutors as something they can use across the whole curriculum. They can create stop motion animations but they can also use the camera to record video of a lesson; as a microscope; for time lapse; taking snapshots and making a Skype or Zoom call.
10. Award winning
They don’t like to brag but… HUE Animation Studio kit has won many awards on both sides of the Atlantic – as a teaching tool and as a toy! See the awards here.
It’s an out of the box gift for out of the box thinking and provides children with out of this world experiences.
HUE Animation Studio is a toy that children will actually play with!
And finally… Put HUE Animation Studio on your shopping list!
To enter our competition later this afternoon with a chance to win one of five HUE Animation Studio kits, click here. The deadline for entries is Thursday 12th December 2019.