Tuesday, March 8, 2011


This week I introduced my first graders to Vokis.
Voki is a free service that allows you to create personalized speaking avatars and use them on your blog, profile, and in email messages.

On day 1, I started by doing a whole group intro on my SMARTboard. I showed them how to get to the site- I'm a big believer in showing the kids how to get to sites by actually typing the addresses when appropriate (appropriate being when the addresses aren't too long or complicated) We then walked through the many different options of customizing your Voki. We learned how to pick a character, how to change the hair, clothing, and bling. We then learned how to tweak our characters. They thought this was an absolute hoot, especially when we enlarged all of the options. At this point, I took them into the computer lab where they all typed the address and then explored and created various Vokis. This entire lesson took us 30 minutes.

On day 2 (we go to the computer lab twice a week for 30 minutes each time) we quickly reviewed what we had learned on day 1. I then showed them how to change the background and how to make their Voki talk. We used the typing option. To make it quick and easy, I had the kids type in, "My name is..."  Some names did not come through correctly and so I worked with the students to spell their names phonetically which they thought was interesting. This lesson also took a total of 30 minutes.

Now that my students know how to navigate the site I plan to embed it into a meaningful part of our learning. One of the ideas I have, is for my students to create a Voki that to look like them and to have their Voki share one fact that they learned about a topic that we are studying. We'll then embed these onto our blog for parents to see. Another idea I have is for students to share text to self connections from books that they have read. Obviously, typing this length of information would be difficult for a 1st grader so I plan to have them record their message either by phone or microphone which will also allow their Voki to have their voice. I used the phone option for my Voki above and it was super easy. Doing these from school I plan to use my cell phone so I won't incur long distance phone charges.

Voki has also released their Voki for Education site with a Teacher's Corner message board where you can get your questions answered, look for and share your ideas, and get tips and tricks. They also have a lesson plan database where you can search for lessons by grade and subject.

Does anyone have any other great ideas for incorporating Vokis into early primary curriculum?


  1. This looks like a lot of fun! My third graders will love it! I think I will give it a try. Thanks for the awesome ideas!!


    Thoughts of a Third Grade Teacher

  2. We used the Voki website to create personalized avatars that stated a math fact. For example, "A quadrilateral is a shape with four sides." But, we couldn't get our Voki's to post with sound on our blog site so we could share it with others. How did you get yours to post and talk? Could you email us at jhollingsworth@kokomo.k12.in.us and tell us how you got it to work?