Zimmer Twins is ‘’A nice site for students for digital storytelling for creating web comics” (David Kapuler). On this website, you can create your own movie by using short videos which are already on the website. On some of those little videos, you can write dialogues. The mini-videos are about a boy, a girl, and a cat. You can choose the setting and who is/are in the specific video. There are many options. You cannot upload your final product, but you can share it with the teacher and students.
As a teacher, you can manage your students’ account, you can choose their password. You have your list of students. Beside each name; you can click on movies, to see their creations. You can also view their profile, manage their accounts or delete their accounts. By deleting a student, you also delete all of his or her work. With the free accounts, you have a maximum of remaining movies, if you pay for your account, you can create movies unlimitedly. There is an option to print your students list and their passwords so you can keep track of this information. You can also manage the comments below your students’ videos; if another student comments something inappropriate, you can delete it. In the section “My unread’’, you can view new students work. Beside each students’ videos you have not watch, it is written ‘’new’’. To view the new content, just press on “new”. This is very interesting to have the option to press on that and to be directed on the new content since a teacher could have a lot of students and not know who posted new content without that option.
To have your students view your movie, there is an option you can select which is called “teacher pick”. Selecting that option puts your video on top of the class movies’ page. On that very page, you and your students will be able to see every student’s videos which is a nice way for the students to be inspired and to have a chance to read in English. You can also ‘’favorite’’ your students’ video. By doing so, you will be able to refer to them in the “My Favourites” section at all time and be able to show them to your class as examples. You can always remove a video from that section by clicking on ‘’favorite’’ a second time.
You can also create blog entries. You can, for example, ask students “What do you want the next video to be about”. Then, you can write choices like “cats’’, ‘’A party”, and “A trip to space”. After that, students can vote by selecting their favorite option. It is a nice way to connect with students and to have them feel like they have a say in the activity choices.
An activity a teacher could propose to the students would be to create a short story and to ask the student to finish it in a one-minute video. For instance, the video could be about a boring day and the characters desire to go on an adventure. It would be good in an ESL class with young students (elementary to secondary two, depending on the students). It would be fun for them to develop their creativity and to practice their English. What would also be fun would be for them to present their video in front of their teammates. They could also read the dialogues written in their video to the group; it would make them practice their pronunciation. It would be fun for them to see what their friends did and it would be also good for them to hear the other videos’ dialogues in English.
Someone wrote: “With simple commands and word combinations, kids can create their stories and can see the results of their efforts immediately. Kids can demonstrate learning across a range of subject areas if they set specific goals for their creations.”
Joe T, a teacher, also points out that: “It is a good alternative to slide presentations and other printed presentations that students are frequently assessed.”
The free version only allows the teacher to have five students and to do 12 movies. It would be good if the glass would be divided in, for example, five teams of five to do one group project. Otherwise, the paid version would be a good idea, especially if the teacher plans on using this tool with many students and do the same project in the years to come. See the prices here.