Talking Tech Friday – Kerpoof!

I admit – I picked this one because of it’s name and logo.

What is it?

Kerpoof is a game/art application aimed at kids, but open to anyone to join.  Kids can make movies, draw pictures, make e-cards, create designs to go on t-shirts or mugs, tell stories, as well as typical social networking type things such as create avatars and vote on other creations.  They also target classroom use, with a teachers’ page, classroom ideas, lesson plans, and information on how using Kerpoof can assist in meeting national standards.

Because Kerpoof wants to maintain an environment suitable for children, all site content is monitored and approved by staff to ensure no inappropriate images or personal information is posted on the site. From their “For Parents” page: “We do not approve any scenes that include inappropriate topics, profanity, excessive violence, references to other Web sites, or any information that could be used to identify or contact the authors”

How does it work?

You don’t need to sign in to create or save content, but you do if you want to create an avatar, post scenes to the site, and email pictures to people.  Signing in simply requires a user name and password – no email address, nothing! I love it already!  You choose 2 secret questions in order to assist you in password recovery, should you forget.

After signing in, you have the options to make a picture, make a movie, make a drawing, make a card and make a story.

  • Make a picture – you start by choosing a pre-made background image, then adding graphics and arranging them on the page.  There are ready graphics related to your background, or you can search for a specific item.  You can also draw your own graphics to add to the image.  When your scene is complete, you can save it to the site, print it out, or email it to someone.  Here’s my sample scene.
  • Make a movie – this is pretty good stuff! You choose a story line, then a setting and characters.  You can choose music as a soundtrack, and assign actions and sayings to a timeline.  It’s pretty fun and simple, though unfortunately I haven’t figured out how to link to mine, specifically.
  • Make a drawing – much like MS Paint, you have a variety of tools to sketch out a drawing, and make shapes.  It is much to fun to be doing at work!
  • Make a card – this is much like making a picture – you choose from some pre-arranged graphics, which you can move around, manipulate the size, and add text.
  • Make a story – You create your story page by page, picking background scenes and adding your characters, text, and other graphics.

Overall, I think it’s a great interface. Maybe I’m an old fogey, but I would like to see a better way of choosing images – I wasn’t able to grasp exactly why certain images were being presented to me to use, and the searching leaves a little to be desired.  I’d also have liked to be able to download my artwork to my computer, or embed it (especially movies!) in the website.  But still, a lot of fun.

Kerpoof also offers a paid subscription which allows access to more content and features, such as joining groups and a chat service.

Possible Library Uses

I think this could be a great tool for storytime or youth activities, as well as pointing it out to teachers to use as a resource.  Any other ideas?

Reviews:

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~ by Anali on November 21, 2008.

One Response to “Talking Tech Friday – Kerpoof!”

  1. i like this site I think its nice.

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