This article discusses the affordances of the explanatory animation creation process on the person who makes the animation, specifically, how his or her own conceptual understanding of any chosen topic is challenged, deepened, and ultimately consolidated throughout this process. Third generation activity theory was used in this study as a methodological lens to examine the explanatory animation process at various stages as both a tool and an object. Whilst educational animations have traditionally been the result of collaborations between professional animators and educators, this article documents how children can be engaged in this same process, as a means in itself, for the sake of their own learning. Our claim here is that the children’s mental models, as depicted through the animation key frames, functioned as both flexible models and diagnostic tools.
dual stimulation method
explanatory animation framework
zone of proximal development