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The Age of Exploration Lesson Plan

Learning Objective

Students will be able to demonstrate their understanding of the Age of Exploration by creating an animated gif using Brush Ninja that depicts key events and figures from this era.


  • Computers or tablets with internet access for each student
  • Brush Ninja
  • Research materials on the Age of Exploration (books, websites, etc.)
  • Paper and pencils for brainstorming ideas



  • Begin by discussing with students what they already know about the Age of Exploration.
  • Introduce the concept of animated gifs and explain that they will be using Brush Ninja to create one related to the Age of Exploration.


  • Give each student a piece of paper and ask them to brainstorm key events, figures, or themes from the Age of Exploration.
  • Encourage creativity and remind students to think about how they can visually represent these ideas in an animated gif.


  • Instruct students to use books or reliable websites to research more about their chosen topic from their brainstorming session.
  • Remind them to take notes on important details that can be included in their animated gif.

Creating the Animated Gif

  • Guide students through accessing Brush Ninja on their computers or tablets.
  • Demonstrate how to use different tools and features within Brush Ninja, such as drawing, adding text, and creating animations.
  • Encourage experimentation and exploration while creating their gifs.

Sharing and Reflection

  • Allow time for students to share their completed gifs with the class.
  • Discuss as a class what they learned during the process and any challenges they faced.
  • Ask students to reflect on how their animated gif represents the Age of Exploration.


Assessment will be based on:

  • Completion of the animated gif
  • Accuracy and depth of historical content in the gif
  • Creativity and originality in visual representation
  • Student’s ability to explain how their gif represents the Age of Exploration


For students who finish early or want to further explore the topic, they can:

  • Conduct additional research on a specific explorer or event from the Age of Exploration and create another animated gif.
  • Write a short paragraph explaining why they chose their specific topic and what they learned about it.

How to animate with Brush Ninja

This video teaches the basics of using Brush Ninja

More Tutorial Videos β†’

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Note: The lessons are written with the assumption that teachers will be using them as a starting point, and will be adapting them to suit the needs of their students and curriculum.

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