​Project Based Learning Electives provided by the Berrien Springs Virtual Academy​​​​​​

All students must complete a project for this class.

The Animation Course - Spring 2024

Virtual Learning Coordinator: Tina Kohler, hspvirtuals@shamrocks.us

Location: Online using Adobe Connect
Ages: 11-18
Day/Time: 12- 1 hour long sessions, 1 hour per week. The Animation Course is held at a specific weekly time using Adobe Connect.  
You do not need special software. See website for open days and times and software/hardware requirements.  
See how to register below


Instructor Introduction: Chad Stewart, former Disney animator and homeschool father to 8 wonderful children. Beginning his career as an old fashioned hand-drawing animator (flipping pages), he has been working in the feature animation world for about 26 years! He made the switch to digital/computer animation about 15 years ago and now has expertise in both types of animation. He has been very much a part of our 16 year journey in homeschooling our children and has enjoyed that process of teaching. About 10 years ago, he began teaching at an online animation school for career-minded adults and that experience was so positive that he and his wife began to envision The Animation Course for school age students. 

Animation LEVEL 1:
Topics covered through the class:

  • The Principles of Animation
  • Traditional Hand Drawn animation
  • Computer Generated animation
  • Joint critiques of student work
  • Animation History
  • and much more

​Animation LEVEL 2:
Prerequisite:  The Animation Course:  Level 1
Topics covered through the course:

  • Weight and Balance
  • Basic human structure
  • Force
  • Body language
  • Examining human walks and runs
  • Acting and Expression
  • Communication and the Face
  • Joint critiques of student work
  • and much more

Animation LEVEL 3:
Prerequisite:  The Animation Course:  Levels 1 & 2
Topics covered through the course:

  • Plot and Story Structure
  • Character development
  • Storyboarding
  • Dialogue
  • Showing not Telling
  • Communicating with the Camera: Basic types of shots
  • Editing:  Cuts and Transitions
  • The Power of Sound
  • and much more

Animation LEVEL 4:
Prerequisite:  The Animation Course:  Levels 1, 2 & 3
Topics covered through the course:

  • Instructor Mentoring and student critiques
  • Flexibility and film making
  • Good ideas come from observation
  • Overcoming frustration with perseverance and encouragement
  • Practice, practice, practice!
  • and much more​

Animation: CAT (Continual Animation Training)
Prerequisite:  The Animation Course:  Levels 1, 2, 3 & 4
Topics covered through the course:

  • Working together to achieve a singular vision
  • Filling a role well on an animation production
  • How to detail and refine an animation shot
  • Good ideas come from everywhere
  • Patience, patience, patience!
  • and much more

Drawing LEVEL 1: Fundamentals of Drawing
*The Drawing courses may be taken in any order

Topics covered through the course:

  • Perspective
  • How to “See”
  • Texture
  • Line and Shape
  • Design
  • Light and Shadow
  • Silhouette
  • introduction to “Creating a Character”
  • and much more

​Drawing LEVEL 2: Drawing for Animation
*The Drawing courses may be taken in any order
Topics covered through the course:

  • Character Expression
  • Shape and design
  • Personality
  • Gesture and motion
  • Structure: Skeletal and Muscular
  • Silhouette value
  • Creating a Character
  • and much more

Register for class on our registration site and also register to reserve your spot with The Animation Course

You may register for the LIVE or the Recorded and Graded class option. You do NOT need to pay the deposit.  After registering for the class with the Partnership you will receive a registration confirmation and instructions which will include the required discount code, to complete registration on The Animation Course website. If you have questions regarding the classes, contact Kayla at  The Animation Course

*Please note: All Partnership classes, including virtual classes, are Project-Based Learning courses. ​All students must complete a project for these classes. It is important to make as informed a decision as possible when choosing your student's Virtual classes.  You will receive an info letter for your Virtual class with your registration confirmation which will include the date deadline to drop your virtual class. The school cannot pay for classes that students do not complete, so choose wisely; if you do not take the class off of your student's schedule by the deadline, you may be asked to pay for the class.

Teacher of Record:  Lisa Van Plew-Cid