The nonprofit Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center Foundation in conjunction with Wonder Media has researched, developed and is now implementing a national campaign on child abuse awareness and prevention.
The “Protect Yourself Rules” videos for grades K through 6 are specifically animated with characters that relate to ages K-3 in one set of videos, and grades 4-6 in the other set. The intent is to get everyone (the schools, after school programs, homes, and the media) talking about the fact that the problem of child maltreatment exists, and that by talking about it, we hope that we can prevent it.
After producing animations for classrooms for the past six years, Wonder Media has learned that animated lessons are most effective when they are less than four minutes long. This is because teachers think hard before they break the rhythm of their daily lesson plan to add something new that might disrupt the flow of their day. Also, educators are reluctant to try something that does not align with the State Teaching Standards they are using in their curriculum.
In the animated lessons, the relatively complex facets of abuse prevention and intervention stem from two basic elements: children must understand and recognize abuse, and they must know that they have the power to stop it. From this foundation, each lesson continues to build a comprehensive skill set and provide tools and confidence children need to stay safe.
WonderGrove Learn has reviewed a number of research papers on the use of animation in education. Both the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center Foundation and WonderGrove Learn have provided examples of research conducted on teaching through animation and information on teaching about child abuse in schools. Likewise presented are focus group notes and testimonials from teachers who have tested the videos early on.