KIDS MAKE MOVIES
ANIMATION AND MOVIE-MAKING FOR KIDS
Action! Let’s make a movie!
Students create a complete short movie from beginning to end with the help of a teacher and one assistant. We have worked with several schools throughout New York City and Brooklyn. We provide all necessary equipment to make a movie: 2 cameras, tripods, professional lights, microphones, green screen, props, costumes, and make up. Please contact us if you would like to add movie-making to your school program as an in-school elective, after-school or summer program.
Here is a break-down of our approach:
The group comes up with a story together: First they work on a script and storyboards, choose backgrounds, cast the roles, and rehearse.
“Roll camera!” Filming in front a green screen is next: The kids learn how to set up lights and sound equipment and take turns as director, camera operator, sound tech, and clapper loader while others perform.
They learn editing basics using iMovie and how to compress, export, save and upload it as a digital file.
At the end of the class, everybody gets a copy of the movie on a DVD and a digital file for sharing online.
2D Animation classes
This animation class explores the process of crafting a digital story from beginning to end: It builds communication, creativity, digital,
visual, and sound literacy, as well as project management skills.
During a trimester (about 9 classes,) students tell their story through the means of 2D Computer animation using the simple Frames Animation software. They work during the first two sessions on their storyboards and scripts. They can either use characters they draw themselves or ready-made images from the software library.
After recording voiceovers, they choose backgrounds, create or cut-out characters, then animate them. They can then add sound effects and/or music files in addition to the voiceovers.
Students master the skills to tell their stories with text, pictures, and personal narration: We teach them how to engage their audience with transitions like pan and zoom, how to match frame duration to sound recording, how to integrate motion graphics and more.
After the class, students get a DVD with their masterpieces and a digital movie file they can share online with friends and family.
Stop-motion animation is a great tool to tell your story. In a series of (1-10) sessions, students create a stop-motion animated movie using figures made out of clay, paper cut-outs, their toys (like Lego), random objects, or even their own bodies (pixellation). We come to you, or students can work at our office in Washington Heights.
First, we work on a story outline, write a script, and draw a storyboard. Then we record voiceovers. Next, kids create their characters and backgrounds: The backgrounds can be drawn, built from Lego bricks and plates, printed photos, or added later with a green screen.
It’s time to film!
We take many, many photographs using a professional photo camera with lights and a tripod. We use the Dragon interface software to compile the pictures. After shooting, students learn how to edit the scenes in Final Cut adding music, voiceover, and sound effects.
Students can choose to work one-on-one with the teacher or invite one or more friends to participate. Teamwork is very suitable for producing stop-motion, particularly for taking turns on camera duty and animating the characters frame by frame. It also helps to have a variety of voice actors, and they can have a lot of fun together, along with a memory they can watch together again and again. At the end of the class student(s) receive a DVD and a digital file of the movie to share online.
Students tell their story through the means of 2D Computer animation: They can choose to use the simple Frames Animation software or use images made in Photoshop and assembled in Final Cut. A laptop with the software will be provided. We come to you, or students can work at our office in Washington Heights.
First, students write a script and record voiceovers. Then they choose backgrounds, create or cut-out characters, then animate them: They can draw the characters themselves or use ready-made images from the software library or the internet. They can then add sound effects and/or music files in addition to the voiceovers.
Students master the skills to tell their stories with text, pictures, and personal narration: We teach them how to engage their audience with transitions like pan and zoom, how to match frame duration to sound recording, how to integrate motion graphics, and more.
After the class, students can take a DVD with their masterpieces home and will also receive a digital movie file they can share online with friends and family.
Click on the images below to watch a few of our fabulous featured projects! Some of these movies were made in the after-school programs, some were made in private lessons, and some in summer camps: All of these projects are the products of the young movie-makers’ creative ambition, their hard work, their desire to make a movie they can stand by, and their willingness to share their fantastic stories with the world.
If you would like to see more of our students’ fantastic movies, or for ideas and inspiration, please check out our YouTube channel:
Our movie-making parties are very special. It is perfect for a birthday or special event, and best with kids ranging from 6-12. Up to ten kids are ideal, but we can scale up for larger events. We come to your location for the event or we can rent a green screen studio for an extra fee. Meeting in a park/outdoors is also an option, weather-dependent.
Your child can choose a theme and we work with the kids to make their ideas come to life: time-travel, news shows, Greek myths, and monster madness, unicorns, and magic show: you name it! We can also facilitate improv games for older kids.
Before the Party: We work together with the kids to come up with a script beforehand and the participants prepare for the day of the filming gathering costumes, makeup and props as needed.
During the party, kids take turns taking on on all the movie-making roles as director, camera operator, prop-master, costumes and make-up person, sound tech, and clapper loader while the others perform.
After the party, we edit the movie and the finished product is typically delivered within one to two weeks. The birthday child is invited to participate and can come to our office in Washington Heights to help with the editing and learn the software.
Each party guest receives a DVD and a digital movie file that can be shared with family and friends online.
What we offer is an experience and end product that can, and will be—watched hundreds of times, and a memory that lasts a lifetime.
Co-founder, Director, Teacher
Andrei is a creative and passionate movie and animation teacher with 14 years of experience. With a background in painting and video art, he enjoys helping kids to find their voice and storytelling powers. Andrei speaks English, Mandarin and Russian.
Elke teaches part-time at
kids-make-movies with a focus on story development, basic scriptwriting, and acting. She has a background in video production and language teaching.
Make-up artist and Props Master
Begonia is a Spanish artist and videographer. She brings crazy creative ideas to all projects. Begonia creates costumes, and finds props with or without a big budget, and enjoys working with kids tremendously.