Innovation: Education

Making time lapse videos with students

Using Lapse It for Android

making time lapse videos with studentsStudents at Saint Francis Xavier school in Winooski used Lapse It, a time lapse camera app to demonstrate the mitosis process.  Mary Ellen Varhue, the middle level science teacher at SFX explained, “in the past this would have been a poster project.  Using Lapse It gave students a much better appreciation of the dynamic nature of mitosis as a process that moves from one phase to the next smoothly.”

Here are some of her thoughts on student learning, the app, and ideas for next time.

Student Learning

“Student engagement was very high for this assignment. Working in groups of three, there was a high degree of collaboration and creativity.”

The App

The free version of Lapse It (which they used with Android devices) does not let you save work over several shoots.  Therefore, students had to create the process in one shoot.  “We were all on a learning curve with the app, so I didn’t go too crazy with insisting on perfection!”

Next Time

This was the first time using the app, so next time Mrs. Varhue plans on setting a minimum of 25-30 pictures to get a more detailed animation.  She also suggested blocking off four class periods for this type of activity:

  • 1-2 for storyboarding and creating the props
  • 1 for practice
  • 1 for a final shoot.

She noted that in one of the student examples, they used a different Android app, PowerDirector, to add effects and music.

The Results

Check out two of the videos students in Mrs. Varhue’s class created during the unit.

Meredith Swallow

Meredith Swallow is in her fourth year as a doctoral student at UVM, and is working with the Tarrant Institute as a Research Associate and Professional Development Coordinator. As a former middle- and high-school math teacher, Meredith facilitated environments of engaged, active learning, by supporting the connection of knowledge through interaction, understanding, and meaning. Her research focuses on the intersection of educational technology, content knowledge, and pedagogy, and how that supports twenty-first century educational goals and outcomes. She strives to model effective technology integration across multiple disciplines by recognizing diverse learning needs and specific school and teacher contexts. When not studying or engaging in research, Meredith enjoys her time in the outdoors hiking with her trusted sidekick Jack the Dog.

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