Teacher Review For BrainPOP Jr.

Fun, engaging resource for students (and grown-ups) that covers a broad range of curricular areas.

Matthew N.
Special Education Instructor
William Fleming High School
Roanoke, VA
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My Grades 9, 10, 11, 12
My Subjects English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies
My Rating 4
Learning Scores
Engagement 4
Pedagogy 4
Support 3
My Students Liked It Yes
My Students Learned Yes
I Would Recommend It Yes
Setup Time Less than 5 minutes
Great for Individual
Knowledge gain
Small group
Teacher-led lessons
Whole class
Great with General
Low literacy
Special needs
How I Use It
I use the videos from BrainPopJr as a way to introduce various content or as a way to wrap up or bring closure to a lesson. Annie (the narrator) asks questions throughout the videos, which are written on a notepad displayed on the screen. These are great opportunities to stop the video and have a group discussion. The games and linked activities can give students opportunity to practice the skills just covered in the video. The related lesson plans are often hit or miss as far to how robust they are, but do provide extensions that can be executed in the classroom after viewing the movie to give students hands-on learning opportunities. I sometimes use the built-in easy and hard quizzes to perform informal assessments of student understanding. Students enjoy completing the quizzes on the interactive whiteboard (sometimes in small groups). The "pop a joke" and "write about it" features usually solicit groans from my students.
My Take
BrainPopJr provides fun, engaging videos related to a wide variety of standards aligned content. These videos (and their related activities) are a great way to initially introduce concepts or as a lesson wrap up. While the videos are all generally very good, the linked games, extension lesson plans, and quizzes vary in their quality and can become redundant after watching a number of the videos. Teachers should always preview the BPJ video and related resources before using them in class to prevent this redundancy and student disengagement. It should be noted as well that BrainPopJr is a subscription based site, with a few of its videos available publicly. I suggest that you evaluate a few of the free videos to see if the resource might work for you. Overall I feel it is one of the best values in subscription education resources out there.