Creative Communicator
Redbackground with Powtoon


Powtoon is a free app that quickly and easily creates animated videos and presentations. The free version allows students to create accounts and provides access to a host of options to customize any project in a highly engaging fashion. Students will use nearly identical skills needed to create a Powerpoint or Google Slideshow with the addition of learning how to use a timeline to add or remove objects in the video. Additionally, there is an option where music or a student’s voice narration may be added to the project.

There is a Edu platform for $8 per month that allows the user to create up to 60 student accounts with full privacy settings options, and this subscription may be cancelled at anytime. There is a free trial period also.

Students will:

  • Be able to create an animated video.
  • Be able to create a persuasive video. 

Vocabulary Words:

  1. Timeline: A timeline is a graphic representation of time on a line.
  2. Assets: Assets are digitally stored content. Digital content includes individual files such as images, photos, videos, and text files.

To prepare for this lesson:

  • View a tutorial video on how to make a Powtoon if you are not familiar with the site.

  • Ensure that you have secured the required consent from parents for the project per your district’s guidelines.

  • Here is a permission slip option

  • Here is an optional Edu Platform information page. 

  • If applicable, set up student accounts.

See Accommodations Page and Charts on the 21things4students.net site in the Teacher Resources. 

Directions for this activity:

  1. Introduce what a Powtoon is by showing an example of the Mission Impossible template and explain that students will use this to create their own video.

  2. Have students log in to their account and model how to find the Mission Impossible template.

  3. Demonstrate how to edit the existing text boxes, add or delete objects.

  4. Explain where the different assets are found along the right navigation panel and model how to drag them onto the template. (Note: If students access these, the lesson likely will extend beyond 20 minutes.)

  5. Introduce the topic for the Powtoon. Ask students to consider if chocolate milk should be served in school cafeterias. Review the pros and cons (found in resources). An optional pros and cons chart may be found here

  6. Announce that their mission is to create a persuasive video either for or against having chocolate milk in school. The students need to outline that the slide must include their opinion and cite and explain at least three pieces of evidence to support their opinion. If students are allowed to copy/paste from the document (faster) explain the need to use quotation marks and citing sources.

  7. Provide student work time. At the end of the session remind students to hit the save button!

Optional Activity5 paragraph organizer for a more developed project.

Different options for assessing the students:

MITECS: Michigan adopted the "ISTE Standards for Students" called MITECS (Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students) in 2018.

Creative Communicator
6a. Students choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication.
6b. Students create original works or responsibly repurpose or remix digital resources into new creations.
6c. Students communicate complex ideas clearly and effectively by creating or using a variety of digital objects such as visualizations, models or simulations.
6d. Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.

  • 4.G.A.3 Design a presentation explaining lines of symmetry with examples.

  • 4.MD.A.1 Create a tutorial explaining how to convert from smaller to larger units of measure or larger to smaller units of measure in the metric system.

4.LS.1.1 Construct an argument that plants and animals have internal and external structures that function to support survival, growth, behavior, and reproduction.

4.E1.O8 Explain why public goods (e.g. libraries, roads, parks, etc.) are not privately owned.

This task card was created by Patricia Paxton, Armada Area Schools, February 2018.