• 29 Feb
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    You probably won’t be surprised to hear we’ve got a rather lengthy movie to-do list so when it comes to deciding what to produce next it can be a tough decision. And when it comes to producing exclusive UK movies, we find it especially hard.

    So far we’ve made Bonfire Night, The Troubles, and Emergency 999 so when we got an email from Gail we saw it as a golden opportunity to create another of our fantastic exclusive UK movies.

    Ever wondered how the United Kingdom became, well, united? Wonder no longer!

    In a brand new UK exclusive topic we cover the entire History of the UK…in just six minutes.

    Yes, we’re that good.

    You’ll find out how the British Isles moved from being populated by independent tribes to becoming the UK. Tim & Moby talk about invasions by Vikings, Romans, and Normans as well as key historical figures such as William the Conqueror, Edward I, and James I.

    William the Conquerer

    Finally, find out how Wales, Scotland and Ireland came to be under English rule and what the UK looks like today! 4 Nations, 4 Histories, 4 Cultures – 1 National Government.

    Flags of the UK

    Have a read of our fact-packed FYI to learn about devolution, myths and legends, bizarre laws and customs, and did you know that there are 6 times as many people per sq km in England as there are in Scotland?

    We’ve also worked hard to produce an outstanding set of activities for this topic too.

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  • 02 Nov
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    Bonfire Night was our first UK specific movie for BrainPOP UK so it has a very special place in our hearts. Not only is it our featured movie this week, we’ve got an exciting tale to share with you all.

    When we were remembering remembering we got a surprising call from the staff at the Bodleian Library in Oxford. The staff had been moving books, scripts and other reference materials to an expansive new warehouse in Swindon when they happened along a faded scroll. They knew to give us a call before packing it up. It looked to be centuries old.

    Upon receiving it, we handled it delicately; upon reading it, we couldn’t quite believe what our dynamic duo had been up to once again.

    Now, where did we put that ruff?

    November 5th, 1605

    “Me thinks that could very well be the most glorious site in all of Christendom, Mobyville!” proclaimed Timothy Cromwell.

    Mobyville nodded as he took in the prospect across the Thames of Westminster Palace. He seemed in a sombre mood much and Timothy well understood.

    In the Crowbottom Inn the previous eve, Timothy had come to overhear a most dreadful discussion; one which would lead him to believe the King was in danger! He called upon his faithful companion, Mobyville, collected their trustie steeds from the stables and galloped all the way to London town. Upon passing the Tower of London, Timothy had a most ominous feeling that chilled him to the tips of his leather boots. He pulled his cape tighter around him.

    After such a long journey, there was no time for hesitation. The forthright companions alighted and made way on foot towards the belly of the Palace, where they felt certain to find a wretched soul in need of education and guidance.

    ‘Beepeth beepeth!’ Mobyville whispered. He’d spotted the cellar door which stood ajar.

    ‘Who goes there?!’ shouted a nervous voice from within. Timothy push-ed the door open with a BANG!

    ‘Lo! Thou distempered flea-biting baggage! What manner of treachery is this?’ Timothy exclaimed.

    A scruffy man stood before them guarding what looked like barrels and barrels of gunpowder. ‘Tis not what you think goodly sires! I merely stand guard o’er these here barrels for t’other goodly sire, Robert Catesby.’

    Before he could provide any further excuse – for Timothy was convinced the barrels were intended to destroy the very building they stood in – Mobyville produced a majestic item. A small fairie-like screene danc-ed with bright lights afore them. ‘Hast thou a name?’ commanded Timothy.

    ‘Guy Fawkes,’ the stranger gulped. Timothy handed over the glowing article.

    ‘Master Fawkes, thou hold’st in your hand, an iPad. ‘Tis from the future. T’will speak of events yet to occur. These are BrainPOPs. They will educate thee. With education, thou may changeth your fate…’ Timothy dazzled Fawkes with a tale of his very own life. A frightening fate awaited him if he was set upon his dangerous plot. And goodly folks would celebrate his end for hundreds of years to come!

    ‘What am I to do?’ As Guy Fawkes struggled with his conscience, there came the sound of hurried footsteps outside and a cry of ‘God Save the King!’ With that, his enlightening companions seemed to be sucked in to the iPad as it fell from his hands to the dustie ground, screen ablaze.

    A King’s Guard pushed Fawkes to the hard ground, holding a sword to his throat. ‘What, pray tell, have we chanced upon here? In the name of the King, I spy gunpowder! And have ye not just thrown down a torch to light them with? Treason!’

    ‘The torch bores no flame, tis an iPad…’ pleaded Fawkes. But before he could defend himself, two guards rushed forth and seized him.

    ‘To the Tower for thee, villainous wretch!’

    And as Fawkes was dragged from his post, he looked to the heavens and bawled, ‘If only I had listened to the BrainPOPpers!’

    Fancy weaving a historical tale yourself? You’ll find lots of hints, tips and handy links in our Weaving Tales Spotlight.

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  • 12 Jul
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    Last week saw the Queen addressing the General Assembly of the United Nations for the first time in more than half a century…but in other news, it’s the first time EVER she’s appeared on BrainPOP UK!

    More tea, your Majesty?

    In our latest UK specific movie, Tim and Moby describe the many intricacies of being The Queen.

    You’ll discover what it means to be Head of State; the difference between queen and government; how many countries are in the Commonwealth; and the conflicting views of the Republicans versus the Monarchists. You’ll also learn why the Queen visits all those overseas countries; why she frequently hosts garden parties; and how she honours those who have been of service to the country. And, just how long has she been in the job?

    We’ve made it our featured movie this week, so grab yourself a cuppa and sit down for an audience with The Queen.

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  • 04 Jun
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    Some of the keener eyed amongst you may have noticed that there’s a little football tournament happening in South Africa next week.

    It’s Brazil vs England and during half time Tim and Moby give you their guide to the World Cup – the history, the fans and a couple of famous World Cup moments.

    Thank you to all the BrainPOP UK fans who contributed their ideas to the movie – we couldn’t include them all although they will probably appear in the supplementary material coming in September. It’s clear that the beautiful game brings out your passion!

    Here are the suggestions in full (minus re-tweets and general banter) from our wonderful @BrainPOP_UK Twitter followers when we asked them…

    @teachology: Gazza blubbing; baggio pen miss; beckham late goal v greece; Zidane sending off; my dad falling off chair after 1966 winner!

    @The_Recommender: Mexican Wave being invented Mexico 86. Nessun Dorma song by 3 Tenors Italy 90. Gazzas tears 90. Zidanes France 98. Pele scoring in 58 final age 17. Geoff Hurst hatrick in 66. Pele’s Brazil thrashing Italy in 70. Maradonna’s 2 goals vs Eng 86.

    @dknights: You could have Moby crying reenacting Gazza’s 1990 moment.

    @deerwood: Beckenbauer playing while wearing a sling and Andreas Escobar (example of football being taken too seriously?)

    @Joga5: The addition of the word WAG into footballing lexicon, Hand of God, Pele and Moore hugging, Roger Milla’s dance when scoring for Cameroon, Lineker getting golden boot

    @chrisleach78: Beckham’s red card, Gazza’s tears, Platt’s goal against Belgium

    @Mark_C: Archie Gemmill’s goal vs Holland, Marco Tardelli’s goal and celebrations, Diego Maradona’s legit goal vs Eng and NOTHING 1966! OR Zidanes goals France 98, France vs WG semi final 1982, Italy vs Brazil 1982, Cameroon vs Arg 1990

    @ianaddison: The hand of god/when they cheated?

    @kenny73: Dave Narey ‘toe poke’ v Brazil. You can ignore the four that then flew past a stationary Alan Rough

    @shalmaneser: When Lineker scored, Bobby belting the ball, and Nobby dancing

    @dawnhalleybone: 66 bobby Moore, hand of god, 3 lions, Brazilian genius and Cameroon

    @digitalmaverick you MUST put Archie Gemmel’s goal against Holland in there and Garincha’s dog 🙂

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  • 08 Jan
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    Nine months ago we collected a list of UK specific topics we wanted to turn into Tim & Moby movies. They were to be distinctly about British life, history and culture.

    You can imagine what a wide and varied list that was. But we couldn’t make them all. We had to choose a handful to go into production.

    The first of these has already premiered – Bonfire Night – which has since gone on to become one of our most viewed movies. Over the next week or so, to coincide with BETT2010, we planned to launch two more.

    One of the two was a very hard topic: The Troubles in Northern Ireland, covering the period between 1966 and the signing of The Good Friday Agreement. We’re not afraid to tackle the tough subjects as you’ll know if you’ve seen examples like our 9/11 or Swine Flu movies.

    Unfortunately, news of a car bomb today (7th Jan 2010) in County Antrim has made the act of releasing this movie, of which we are very proud, a difficult act. We have made a movie that has proved to be more relevant and topical that we wanted it to be.

    The Troubles_map and dates

    This was not an easy movie to make. We consulted carefully in both communities of the province and in Eire, and researched well beyond even our most rigorous normal levels.

    We did not want to avoid the contentious aspects of this part of modern history and end up with an anodyne and flavourless movie that only stated facts.

    We wanted to stimulate curiosity and provoke discussion, but retain a context for this with a narrative that was accurate and informative. Roger Hurn, a hugely talented writer, ex-head-teacher and storyteller, crafted the script that walks the fine line with care and accuracy.

    We realise that given the news in Northern Ireland today (both in terms of security and politics) there will be lots of children asking about this beautiful but troubled part of the UK, and we believe that to shy away from releasing this movie would be to let down the kids who are asking questions that deserve answers.

    However, today’s act of violence is a rare break in the peace created by the people of Northern Ireland. Although Politicians captured ‘peace’ in a document  – it is the daily life and choices of the people there that make it the daily reality.

    This all new BrainPOP UK movie is dedicated to the people  of Northern Ireland and their daily struggle to maintain the peace.

    The Good Friday Agreement in full

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  • 02 Nov
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    …because today sees the premiere of our first ever exclusive BrainPOP UK movie!

    (Feel free to watch this Pearl and Dean intro to get in the mood)…ladies and gentlemen of the BrainPOP UK community…we give you…Bonfire Night.


    Over the next few months you will see brand new BrainPOP UK movies being launched. Up until now all our movies had already appeared somewhere else, such as on BrainPOP US. Our up coming exclusive movies will all showcase UK specific topics that are pertinent to British educators’ needs.

    So this is kind of a big deal for us and we’d love your feedback. It deals with a very British subject, with particular relevance right now. So to celebrate we’ve made the movie free for everyone this week.

    Happy bonfire night, everybody!

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  • 10 Sep
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    Have a look at this list. They’re all brand new movies coming to BrainPOP UK very soon.

    We’re extremely proud to announce these movies (and their accompanying quizzes, don’t forget) will be added to BrainPOP UK for all free trials and subscribers.

    No extra cost. No hidden charges. No funny business.

    They span all the subjects in BrainPOP UK, both Primary and Secondary, and will automatically appear over the next 8 weeks, in batches, with new Maths and English movies already up. The list below is simply alphabetical, but in BrainPOP UK they will be categorised and tagged to curricula.


    Example of some of our new English movies

    If you dearly need one of these movies for a lesson and you can’t find it in BrainPOP UK (yet) then contact us and we’ll see if we can expedite it specially.

    • Active Transport
    • Adding and Subtracting Integers Advanced
    • Adding and Subtracting Fractions Advanced
    • Agatha Christie
    • Aids
    • Algae
    • Allergies
    • Anthrax
    • Antonyms, Synonyms, and Homonyms
    • Ants
    • Appendix
    • Arachnids
    • Asexual Reproduction
    • Associative Property (Order of Calculations)
    • Asthma
    • Atmosphere
    • Autism
    • Autumn Leaves
    • Aztec Civilisation
    • Balance
    • Blood Pressure
    • Body Chemistry
    • Bonfire Night
    • Bogies
    • Braces
    • Brain
    • Brass Instruments
    • Calculus
    • Capitalization
    • Carbon Cycle
    • Carnivorous Plants
    • Cats
    • Cells
    • Cellular respiration
    • Choosing US presidential candidates
    • Classification
    • Clauses
    • Cnidarians
    • Cold War
    • Compounds and Mixtures
    • Computer Mouse
    • Conditioning
    • Conjunctions
    • Conquistadors
    • Decimals
    • Diagramming Sentences
    • Dictionary And Thesaurus
    • Diffusion
    • Distance, Speed, and Time
    • Distributive Property
    • Division
    • Ecosystems
    • Electric Circuits
    • Electromagnetic Spectrum
    • Emergency 999
    • Equations with Variables
    • Etymology
    • Exoplanets
    • Factoring
    • Fall of the Roman Empire
    • Fax Machine
    • Foetal development
    • Food Safety
    • Fossils
    • Frankenstein
    • Frida Kahlo
    • Galaxies
    • Geologic Time
    • Geometry
    • Gills
    • Graphs
    • Ground Water
    • Growth
    • Homer
    • Hormones
    • Humans and The Environment
    • Idioms and Cliches
    • Imagination
    • Immune System
    • Improving Sentences
    • Inca Civilisation
    • Isotopes
    • Joints
    • Latitude and Longitude
    • leap Year
    • Lord of the Flies
    • Mahatma Gandhi
    • Maths Problems
    • Maya Civilisation
    • Measuring matter
    • Metals
    • Metamorphosis
    • Migration
    • Mineral Identification
    • Monotremes
    • Multiple Sclerosis
    • Multiplication
    • Multiplying and Dividing Fractions
    • Nanotechnology
    • Natural Disasters
    • Nervous System
    • Nutrition
    • Organic Food
    • Outer Solar System
    • Passive Transport
    • Petrol and oil
    • Pirates
    • Poetry
    • Polyhedrons
    • Power
    • Prime Numbers
    • Printers
    • Property Changes
    • Protists
    • Protozoa
    • Punctuation
    • Queen Elizabeth 1
    • Radioactivity
    • Reading Skills
    • Referencing Sources
    • Respiratory System
    • Rise of the Roman Empire
    • Roald Dahl
    • Roman Numerals
    • Roots, Prefixes, and Suffixes
    • Rounding
    • Scientific Method
    • Seeding Plants
    • Sentence Fragments
    • September 11th
    • Seven Wonders
    • Six Kingdoms
    • Skeleton
    • Slope and Intercept
    • Soil
    • Solar Energy
    • Stock and Shares
    • Sumerians
    • Sun Protection
    • Symbiosis
    • Terrorism
    • The Order of Calculations
    • The Troubles
    • The Writing Process
    • They’re, Their and There
    • Time Zones
    • Transformation
    • Tsunami
    • Types of Triangles
    • Urinary System
    • Using Proportions
    • Volume of Cylinders
    • Volume of Prisms
    • Waste Management
    • World War I
    • World War II
    • World War II Causes
    • Writing In Sequence

    PS: You can find a huge comprehensive list of all our movies that are live on our site on our “Movies list” page.

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  • 07 May
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    So, here we are with a new blog – and one hell of a story to get us going!

    BrainPOP has a proud history of dealing with some of the more difficult issues in life. We know how tough or awkward it can be trying to find a way to explain illness, world events or natural disasters to children.

    Today BrainPOP UK has released its first UK exclusive movie and it’s about one of those tricky topics that has been in the public eye for some weeks: Swine Flu.

    In this 5 minute movie Tim and Moby explain how Swine Flu started, how viruses spread and what to do about them. It also takes the time to dispel some of the rumours and explains what symptoms to look out for.

    As it’s Tim and Moby, it’s delivered in a way that will engage your students and stimulate debate and de-mystify some of the rumours.

    The story of why we chose this subject, like that of the virus itself, started in Mexico with BrainPOP Español (bet you didn’t know there was a South American BrainPOP, eh?).

    As the virus started to take hold and schools started shutting down, children and teachers in Mexico started looking for something that would explain what was going on, and they started spreading word of the BrainPOP Español movie about Flu.

    The BrainPOP Mexico team were as worried and affected by the virus as everyone else, so Gabriel and his team decided to make the Flu movie free while the schools were closed – as a public service to kids and families in Mexico.

    They uploaded the movie to YouTube and, crucially, made it embeddable. It seemed like the right thing to do.

    Although the movie is about flu more generally, it does talk about epidemics and pandemics and how best to look after yourself when there is a bad bug going around.

    This is where the story becomes interesting.

    Within hours, this movie went viral (in this case the irony of this terminology is unfortunately appropriate). Since being uploaded to Youtube it has been featured in various popular online spaces such as The Eleconomista (a major Mexican newspaper ) and the video itself has been seen over 22,000 times.

    As the movie went up the YouTube rankings, the national news channels in Mexico heard about the movie and pretty soon Tim and Moby were out there helping children across Mexico to understand more about the epidemic they were at the centre of.

    The success of BrainPOP Mexico helping inform people about Swine Flu gave the rest of BrainPOP the commitment to do more. The founder of BrainPOP, Dr Kadar, knows at first hand how scary stories like this can be – as he is both a paediatrician and immunologist.

    So this story of the “little movie that could” is why we are presenting the UK version to you – a product of the whole BrainPOP family pulling together.

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