Make a New Year's Resolutions Animated GIF on the iPad

Learn how to make a New Year's Resolution animated GIF on the iPad using the FREE apps PicCollage and Lumyer and these step-by-step directions. Great way to integrate technology into your classroom!

Go digital this New Year and have your students make their New Year's Resolutions using an iPad and the two FREE apps: PicCollage/PicCollage Kids and Lumyer. The final product will result in an animated GIF that you can embed on your class blog/website, post on a Padlet wall or drag into a collaborative Google Slides presentation or Google Doc. Here are a few examples:

I love digital activities like this for many reasons:

  • They are completely paperless! You don't have to waste your copies :)
  • You can share them with the world! There are countless ways that digital activities can be shared with the community and/or parents. Email links to files (Google Slides presentation in this case), embed on your class blog/website, post in Google Classroom...I could keep going!
  • Engagement. Kids gravitate to technology so why not use it to our advantage!

Before you start, I think it is very important to discuss the idea of a New Year's Resolution. If you have been following my blog for awhile then you will know that I LOVE a good read aloud to kick off a lesson.

A couple of good ones include (affiliate links):

Carla from Comprehension Connection shared some other great read alouds and ideas for goal setting in THIS blog post.

Last year I did a technology lesson on January 5th with a 2nd grade teacher.  Our lesson was about making New Year's resolutions. The first part of the lesson was cut off by a fire drill🙄 so we decided to skip right to the activity. BAD MOVE. We had assumed that the kids were familiar with the idea of a New Year's resolution. After all, they had talked about it a little before their Christmas break. The sentences they typed and the pictures they drew in Pixie were absolutely off the wall. Some of our favorites included:

  • My New Year's Resolution is to make friends with a dinosaur.
  • My New Year's Resolution is to play video games all day.
  • My New Year's Resolution is to blow bubbles.

The lesson was a bust. Therefore, I will never skip this step ever again.

Onto the activity...

Directions on creating a New Years Resolution animated GIF using the free ipad apps, PicCollage and Lumyer

After you have downloaded the two apps to your iPads, have students visit PicCollage/PicCollage Kids to make their image. This app is SO versatile and is hands down one of my favorite apps! 

To make the image:

Open a freestyle collage. Then click on the plus(+) sign at the bottom of the screen and select the purple Background icon.

Choose a background. If you would like to search for a specific background, click the magnifying glass.

Type in what you would like to look for in the search box. I am going to search for a glitter background.

Select the one you want by tapping on the square.

Click the check mark in the right hand corner.

Tap the plus+ again to add text. Click on the pink Text icon.

Type your text. I broke up my sentence into 4 lines by pressing the Enter/Return key after a couple of words. This will allow my text to stay on the screen when I go to expand it. You can customize your font, font color, font background color and alignment. I have labeled the different tools in the screenshot below:

Make your text bigger by pinching out. You can tilt your text or keep it centered..up to you! Next, click on the plus+ and select Photos.

Click on the camera icon. Have someone take a picture of you. The picture looks best if you can get a waist up shot but you can also do a full body shot if you want to appear standing in your image.

Tap the photo you want to use and then tap the checkmark.

Hold you finger down on the photo until a menu pops up.

 Without picking up your finger or stylus, trace your body. You need to meet the point where you started drawing. If you mess up, simply start tracing again. It might take several tries and that is O-K-A-Y! Remember, it will not be perfect. I think that is what makes this "cute"...the imperfections!

With two fingers pinch out your image or pinch in to make it bigger/smaller. Place it where you would like. If you would like to add other images, go for it!

To save, click the blue icon in the lower right hand corner.

Click Save to Library.

You know you are good to go when you see the blue check mark and message: Saved to Library! Exit out of PicCollage.

To add an animation and turn your image into a GIF:

Open Lumyer. *This app is rated 12+. I have provided an alternative to this app below.* Tap in Gallery.

Select your image at the bottom of the screen and then click the checkmark in the upper right hand corner.

Scroll through the animations.

There is a whole library of really cool animations that you can download straight to the app for free.
Click See All for this option. Update: There are now a few inappropriate animations in this bank...uhhh! The fireworks, glitter and party confetti are the defaults so if you still want to use this app then tell your students just to choose the ones that appear on the bottom row and tell them that there isn't time to "See All"(that is if you have students that do what you say😬. )

If YOU want to add any extra animations to YOUR iPad or your class iPads you can find the animations you want to try out and click Download. Then tap one of the animations to test it out.

If you want to see a different animation, click on Delete FX. If you like what you selected, click Save.

Tap GIF.

It has been saved to your Camera Roll! The FREE app will have a small watermark appear in the lower right hand corner. I paid to remove the watermark ($1.99) because I use it ALL.OF.THE.TIME. However, the GIFs and videos still look pretty amazing even if they have the watermark!



  • Use the app, Vimo (4+) instead of Lumyer to add an animated theme and save the video to your camera roll
  • Pull the Vimo video you created into the app, GifToaster to create the Gif
There are many different ways you can get the GIFs off of students iPads. A few options include:

1. If you use Google Classroom you could have your students upload straight to it. Within Google Classroom you could post a link to a blank Google Slides presentation that contains a slide for each student. Students could upload their GIF to their individual slide straight from their iPad. 

2. Students can upload their GIF straight to a Padlet wall. This is a great way to showcase students' work. You can send the link home to parents or embed the entire wall on your class blog/website like this:

    Made with Padlet

3. Collect the GIFs by using The Work Collector. This is one of my favorite ways to collect student work from iPads at schools that are not 1:1 and don't have time for students to sign into a specific account. Read all about it HERE.

4. Use a file transferring app like like Send Anywhere.

5. Upload straight to Google Drive or Dropbox. This option is always tough for me at schools that aren't 1:1 since the little ones have to sign into an account and typing can be a LONG, laborious process.

Seesaw: I know many teachers use SeeSaw as a workflow. I LOVE Seesaw. Have your students upload their GIF to their folder and then you can collect their GIFs to display somewhere or just keep it right in Seesaw.

Share however you please! Your students will LOVE checking out their classmates' New Year's Resolutions.

Don't have access to iPads? Then you might be interested in my New Year's Resolutions Collaborative Class Book in Google Slides:

Have your students make their New Year's Resolutions using Google Classroom/Google Drive with this DIGITAL New Year's Resolutions Collaborative Class Book in Google Slides.

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