Web 2.0 and Emerging Learning Technologies/ToonDoo

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ToonDoo is a great, comic-creating tool that allows you to create your own cool comic strips with just a few mouse clicks. It´s an exciting and amusing way to let your imagination work, introducing and sharing them with the rest of the world. You can also insert them in your blogs or websites. Moreover, you can use Toondoo for educating or learning about a concept, talking about a current, social, national or international event, or just fun!

General features:

  • It is easy to use – with only a few clicks and drag ‘n drops
  • You can create 1, 2 or 3-panel comic strips (and edit!)
  • It is possible to choose from a vast variety of characters, props and backgrounds categorized into specific galleries.
  • You can create your own characters by using the TraitR (a tool which allows creators to give a particular quality to the character).
  • It is possible to upload images from your own computer or from anywhere else on the web by using the ImagineR tool.
  • It can be used with many languages.
  • You can add finishing touches to your toons by using the DoodleR (a tool which allows the creator to add drawing touches to his toons. For example: you can choose the brush colour, adjust the brush size, transparency or smoothness simply by using the options within the doodleR. You can also pick a particular colour by using the pick tool or draw a straight line by using the line tool.)
  • You can embed your toons in blogs, websites or forums.
  • Your comic strips can be shared, mailed, tagged, recommended and bookmarked.
  • You can either make a short story long or combine multiple toons into a toonbook.


Social features:

ToonDoo is a great place for social networking. You can:

  • Send your toons to friends.
  • Embed toons in blogs, websites or forums
  • Add them to favourites.
  • Appreciate a cool toon by cheering it.
  • Flag as inappropriate if you think the toon has offensive or inappropriate content.
  • Write your comment on a toon (which will also be featured in the 'Comments gallery' and sent via email to the toondooer)
  • Send a private message to a fellow toondooer.
  • Interact with fellow dooers via the official toondoo forums. This is your space to talk about toons, clarify doubts, request for new features or discuss anything under the sun!


How Can people create their own characters?

Toondo has a cool feature called the TraitR with which people can create their own character, following these simple steps:

  • Click on 'TraitR' button in the creator.
  • Choose from among the vast variety of facial features, body parts, clothes and accessories to create your unqiue traitR character
  • Save your Traitr character after its done.
  • All your TraitR characters once created, will be available in your my traitRs gallery.
  • Just drag and drop to use them in your toons. You can also change their posture and facial expressions by clicking on the posture and emotion buttons in the creator.


Making a colourful text

You can also introduce colourful text selecting a speech bubble or text box, and hit the ‘Control’ button on your keyboard to see your text change colour with every click. Stop when you like a colour. You can do this with the stick men, too!

Or, you can simply select the text when you want to colour-change and click on the 'colour' button in the creator!


Inserting toons in documents

You can introduce your toons in a Word, Powerpoint or some other document by just saving the published toon onto your computer (just right click on the published toon image and select 'Save as'). Use the 'Insert picture' option and select the toondoo image on your computer from the saved location into your word / powerpoint / other document.


Saving doodles, images and traitRs

All the doodles and traitR's created by you as well as the images uploaded by you can be saved under your 'my galleries'. There are separate galleries for your images, traitRs, doodles and even your favourites. And you can edit or delete any of these ítems.


Teaching and learning possibilities: What can a teacher do?

  • Explain a topic or concept entirely with toons.
  • Make class assignments interactive with ToonDoo.
  • Create characters or choose from a variety of previous ones.
  • Explain school processes and procedures with toons.
  • Test learning of new concepts and skills.
  • Get your learners to think about what they have just learned by making them create stories around it.
  • Make language learning fun.
  • Get Pictures to speak LOUDER than words. Storyboard concepts with your learners.
  • Inspire imagination and creativity.

Here there is an example for teachers to make class assignments interactive with ToonDoo:


In a picture, there is a teacher standing in front of her sts, by the board. She is giving instructions to them: Today´s homework assigment is to create a toon doo about what you have learnt in class. On the other hand, students showing interest, enjoying the class, talk each other and say: Toon doo makes learning fun, It´s really easy to use toon doo, I love toon doo h.w, I can´t wait to start.


Moreover, other learning tools you can find in ToonDoo are Compleetoons. They are series of Incomplete toons which you can complete. Just add the text, which you think fits best, to the empty bubbles. It´s just like putting words in their mouth. Or, you can simply look at the other entries and cheer the ones you like!

For example:

In a picture where there is a family listening and watching to the news, the reporter is talking about the world economy slowdown. Parents are shocked to learn about the present economic situation. On the top of the image, there is a question

What does this little boy think about the economic slowdown?. The little boy sitting on the sofa has to say sth. There

is a bubble to complete, which is exactly the learning tool Compleetoons

This is a good resource for teachers to make students imagine and create as well as use the target language.

However, in view of the fact that users come from different countries and socio-cultural backgrounds, it is virtually impractical to monitor all the content that comes on the site and sift out the "safe" content while screening out the inappropriate.

Hence, it follows a slightly different approach in empowering users to flag as inappropriate any toon which they feel is offensive or not suitable for younger viewers.

Content once flagged inappropriate is subjected to review by the Editors post which it is removed from view for all those users who have switched SAFE SEARCH ON (to check if this is ON or OFF for your child, you can login with his / her id and check the safe search setting from the top right corner. This can be changed by going to My Profile under ETC)

While it can´t be guaranteed that people will never find inappropriate content at toondoo, it can be assured that all such content would be blocked from view after it has been reviewed by the Editors. The SAFE SEARCH option should be turned ON to ensure this.


ToonDoo ELT links:

http://abenetpblog.blogspot.com/2008/05/toondoo.html

With this resource you can create a toon story and read it as if it were in a book.


http://www.etprofessional.com/content/view/1130/50/

This site is exclusive for teachers. You can find information about teaching English with toon doo resources. It is very interesting and useful.


http://www.hello-world.com/

A nice resource for young learners of all sorts of languages to English. It contains games to revise useful basic material, cartoons, as well as songs broken down line by line and audio-accompanied comic strips.


http://mrstoutsblog.blogspot.com/2008/03/another-cool-comic-website.html

This blog serves several purposes: Communicating with students outside the classroom, publishing students' work. It serves as a resource for both students and teachers.