Self paced learning and BrainPOP

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Some children race ahead of others to complete a task.

Some take more time, perhaps pursuing a more thoughtful route through an activity.

Some children need to review content more than once in order to learn it most effectively.

So instead of forcing students to learn in lockstep with one another, a self paced learning approach can provide an opportunity to proceed at a rhythm that maximises their learning, improves retention, and encourages ownership of their work.

So can BrainPOP be used for self paced learning?

BrainPOP is a safe space for students to work independently - no adverts, no social media, no messaging.

Students are free to explore related topics and activities, in pairs or at home with parents.

As a teacher you proscribe the direction or learning objective but you could let the students decide how many resources they need to work with or how much practice to give themselves.

BrainPOP videos are often the starting task within the content folder that my students are completing from week to week. I find the videos work well with the interactive games and activities my students must complete. I admit, I love hearing the whisper of, “OHHH, a BrainPOP video,” as they open their content folders. I notice my students watch the videos each day as they begin their required tasks, and return to them often as they acquire those skills and concepts.
— Angela Kiser - Self-paced Learning with BrainPOP

Ways to use BrainPOP to encourage self paced learning

Watch the BrainPOP movie more than once

In a learning environment like BrainPOP, students can easily review material more than once. The most typical example would be to watch a BrainPOP movie multiple times. Each watch through will reinforce learning and allow them to discover information they didn’t catch first time around.

Offer up half a dozen movies. Let students watch as many of those movies as they need, in the time frame. Some children will watch a couple of movies and move on to practice. But some will watch all six, and that’s OK too!

Multi part assignments

If you have an individual teacher account you can easily build custom assignments.

You make a lesson path that students need to follow and submit to back to you, perhaps for homework, your termly topic, or project based learning.

You could refrain from setting a due date to leave the lesson open ended, but a deadline is no bad thing. The student can finish any part of the assignment at any point as long as they submit by deadline.

TOP TIP: Run reports in your teacher dashboard to check who has and has not completed assignments.

Make your own quizzes to target child centered learning objectives

BrainPOP’s Quiz mixer allows teachers to build unique and personalised assessments that are targeted at the student's needs and understanding (or even language!). Quizzes can be banked and assigned as and when the student is ready.

Playful self paced learning!

Learning games are wonderful self paced activities where students can work in individually, in pairs or groups, to work through a game. Students can use the Snapthought button to capture their progress as a "diary" of their learning.

Long term self paced learning

Make a Map and Make a Movie are extension features that students can 'own' and build up over time, as their knowledge and understanding improves. Start the map/movie in week 1 and by week 6 it should be fleshed out and more detailed.


BrainPOP's on top down under!

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Big news for our Aussie schools!

We’re stoked to let you know BrainPOP is now fully mapped to the Australian national curriculum.

We’ve been working hard to add Australia to sit alongside our current English and Scottish curriculum mapping.

To try it out visit our curriculum mapping tool, select ‘Australia’, and drill down from there by year group to find topics relevant to an objective.

It’s that simple!

When you’ve found the objective you’re looking for it will list one or more topics that best fit (bear in mind we don’t claim to have a topic for every objective).

If you’re looking for a specific topic you might be better off using our predictive keyword search or browse through the subjects.

If you’re an Australian school that doesn’t use BrainPOP, but wants to give our resources a try, take out a no obligation free trial.


Assignment builder

Assignments Moby

For many years teachers used to ask us "How do I know when a student has watched a movie on BrainPOP?"

Not any more! BrainPOP's assignment feature is blended throughout BrainPOP, allowing teachers to assign almost anything in BrainPOP and BrainPOP Jr.


Students get notified of the assignment when they login, their interaction with the resource gets captured, and they can keep a personal eye on their assignments feed.

I can see your brain working through the possibilities from here :-)

Want to direct a class to watch a specific movie in preparation for tomorrow's lesson and know who has and hasn't seen it? BOOM! Assign the movie to the whole class.

Want to assess a particular set of students on their understanding of a topic? ZAP! Assign the Challenge feature to specific students from your class.

Want to target a student with some remediation work before a test? KAPOW! Create a personalised quiz using the Quiz Mixer and assign it just to them.

Want to create a mini project for your class to demonstrate their understanding? BAM! Build an multi part assignment, adding a movie, then the quiz, then the Make a Map tool.

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It's super easy. You can also...

  • Schedule assignments using the “schedule for later” option and then select the date you want students to see the assignment
  • Add resources from both BrainPOP and BrainPOP Jr. into one assigment (only available to customers that have both products)
  • Add multiple classes to an assignment. Just click the + symbol next to the class drop down menu

How to assign something in BrainPOP and/or BrainPOP Jr.

Assign buttons
  1. Simply log in to your individual account and navigate to the feature you’d like students to work on.
  2. Click the ASSIGN button, then choose a class and optional due date.
  3. To see the list of everything you’ve assigned, or to edit your assignments, click on the ASSIGNMENTS button at the top of your screen.
Assign a resource in BrainPOP

How students manage their assignments

Students log in to their own accounts, where they will see Moby pop up and advise them they have a new assignment.

Clicking on MY BRAINPOP at the top of the page will show them all the assignments they’ve received thus far or any that are overdue #embarrasedmoby

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Try it out today. It could revolutionise the way you use BrainPOP.


BrainPOP and Blooms Taxonomy

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As an educator you're almost certainly familiar with Bloom's Taxonomy.

Holly Spangler, a BrainPOP CBE, explains why BrainPOP fits Bloom's so well in her in depth blog post she wrote for our Educator's support site:

Bloom’s Taxonomy...offers a framework for teachers to structure and understand the learning process. BrainPOP and BrainPOP Jr., with their wonderfully informative animated movies and accompanying quizzes, games and activities, provide the perfect match to help teachers structure and differentiate their lessons within the framework of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Teachers may differentiate the content they teach by designing activities for groups of students that cover the six levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy: remembering, understanding, applying, analyzing, evaluating and creating.
— Holy Spangler, BrainPOP Meets Bloom’s Taxonomy

When we design our tools and features we align them with with 3 objectives, based on Bloom's taxonomy - Discover, Play, Create.

Whether you are experienced with BrainPOP or are just getting to know our resources you'll see there's a multitude of options on each topic.

Here's a visual breakdown of the various pasts of a topic page and how they fit into the discover, play, create model.


Discover (Understand, Remember)

Students start to learn and understand more about a curriculum topic, recalling important facts from the movies and quizzes (don't forget you can create your own differentiated quizzes using the Quiz Mixer), and matching important concepts to their proper descriptions using the Activity pages.


Play (Analyse, Apply)

BrainPOP comes with a range of educational games and simulations that give students an opportunity to apply their knowledge and demonstrate their understanding.


Create (Evaluate, Create)

In this phase students can use tools like Make-a-Map, Make-a-Movie, and Creative Coding to make and display connections between previous knowledge and new information.