What is Voki:
Voki is a video software that allows you to create animated characters and avatars to express yourself online. Whether you customize your Voki to your features or create a fantastical character, Voki is a fun way to share your thoughts on the web and in the classroom.
Getting Started With Voki:
Although you can create and publish a Voki character without making an account, signing up for Voki is free and allows you to access previously created characters and scenes. To sign up, you'll need to provide your name, a valid email address, your birth date, and a password. Voki will then send you an email with a link to activate your account.
Making a Character With Voki:
Creating a character with Voki is fun and easy. By navigating to the "create" tab, you'll find five different boxes with controls for customizing your Voki. These controls allow you to "Customize Your Character," "Give it a Voice," adjust the color and size of its features, choose a background, and choose a frame.
There are many categories of character heads to choose from, including "animals," "edgy," "oddballs" and "classic." Once you've chosen the head of your character, you'll also be able to choose its clothing and its "bling." To the bottom-left of the "Customize Your Character" box, you'll see another box that allows you to customize the size and color of your character's features. If you're making a character that looks like you, this box will allow you to hone in on the details.
Next, give your character a voice. If you are using the free version of Voki, you can create an audio message that's up to 60 seconds long. Voki gives you the option to record your own voice through a telephone by providing you with a telephone number and passcode. You can also use the built-in microphone on your computer, or upload an audio file to give a customized voice to your character. Voki also let's you use text-to-speech software to create dialogue for your character, and then to choose the sound of its voice and accent. Using the personalized speech element of Voki is a fun way to express yourself on the Internet using your own words.
Sharing Your Voki Character:
After you finish bringing your character to life, it's time to publish and share your Voki with friends. You can add your character to any social media site, web page or blog by using an embed code, or you can send it to a friend through email. If you chose to make a Voki account, you'll be able to save this character and re-visit it later to make more edits or change its dialogue.
Voki for the Classroom:
Although Voki is a fun addition to any web site or social media page, it is marketed specifically toward educators for use in the classroom, and is a great educational video resource. You can get a one-year subscription to Voki Classroom for $29.95, and a two-year subscription for $44.95. Voki can be used in the classroom in many ways, but is especially useful for classroom instruction, and helping students to become digitally literate.
Teachers can create Voki characters to guide their students through assignments on the computer, and in doing so, solicit a higher-level of attention from students. Voki characters are also a great tool for learning foreign languages, as speech exercises can be recorded by the students for teacher review, and teachers can create Voki character's to deliver oral instruction.
In addition, the Voki Classroom website gives you access to Voki lesson plans created by teachers across the country, a "Teacher's Corner" message board, and extensive instructional guides.