Toontastic was fun and easy to use but perhaps more appropriate for K-3, than for higher ed. This is an iOS app, so I downloaded it to my ipad and started playing. My 6 year old took over and had a blast figuring it out. The learning curve was minimal and the guided step-by-step was very good. He had no trouble making his first movie and we were able to create right away with no frustration factor. There is also a pretty nice little parent/teacher guide.
Toontastic is a little different than the other cartoon creation tools I reviewed in that the tool lets you create an actual animated movie. You are assisted in choosing a background, characters and props. Then you record a voice over while dragging these elements around the touch pad. When you play it back, you not only hear your voice but the character movement was is recorded, creating a fun and engaging little cartoon movie.
I don’t see this as being as useful with older audiences. For the younger set, they do coach you through creating a story with a beginning a middle and an end. That being said, if you had a specific project in mind that wanted to combine animation with voice, this would be a good choice.
Unless, everyone that you wanted to particpate didn’t have iPads. I don’t know what this is going to look like in the future. The creators of Toontastic, Launchpad Toys, was just acquired by Google.
I was not able to export my silly movie to give you a demo without granting the app permission I did not want to grant it but you can watch the official demo movie on the Launchpad Toys webpage
Learning curve: Minimal
Ease of use: Easy
Time required to create a product: 10 minutes +
Key features: Easy to create animated characters with voiceover
Problems you encountered: Export restrictions
Barriers that might prevent effective use: iOs specific
Possible educational uses: Teaching storytelling to k-3