Create Student Avatars Using PicCollage

By Erintegration

An avatar is a character that stands for an online user. In the beginning of the year, I
have student create and use avatar names that become part of their log-in to various
sites. Many student blogging and account sites also give students the option of
uploading a picture or image to serve as an avatar that appears next to their username.

Promote good digital citizenship and internet privacy by having students design avatar images to use on their student accounts rather than uses their actual picture. Students can use the insert image and doodle tool on PicCollage to create student avatars that are unique and fun!

How to Create a Student Avatar on PicCollage
For this project, students should use the freestyle template on PicCollage. I also
suggest using the square image size to start since most account profiles call for a
square image.

Next, have students select or search for a background.

Using Image Search and the Clip Tool on PicCollage
For the head, students can use the web search and type “brown circle” in the search
bar. This brings up a series of PNG circles in various tones that students can select for their avatar.

To create the shoulders, students can search “patterned fabric” in the web image
search then select a pattern they like.

 Double touch the pattern and choose clip.

Choose the oval shape and rotate it 90 degrees and over the patterned image so it
makes a semi-circle shape. Touch the check to insert this onto the canvas.

Students can also search “cartoon eyes PNG” as well as other features and accessories to add to their avatar.

I do not require students to be realistic when designing their avatars since the point of an avatar is to hide your identify online. However, students can search and insert PNG objects to decorate their avatars T-shirt or background that display non-identifying interests. Students can also search and add hair, sunglasses, headphones, and jewelry!

By adding the word “PNG” to the search keyword, the search results will return imageswith a transparent background, which means they can be layered over each other.

Using the Doodle Tool on PicCollage
Rather than or in addition to image search, you can have students use the Doodle tool to draw their avatar or various features and accessories.

Students can doodle all at once, or create multiple doodles that can be moved around the canvas separately.

To open the Doodle tool, touch the plus then Doodle. Swipe the bottom to see the
colors. Students can also adjust the width of the marker to add details.

Be Creative
Allow students to mix doodles and PNG images to make a unique avatar reflecting their interests without revealing their identity.

Students can save their avatars to the camera roll to use whenever a student account
has a space to upload an avatar image. To make it easy to find, have students create a folder in the camera roll called Avatar. That way, as they add more and more photos, they can still find it quickly rather than scrolling. Plus they can design and store additional avatars in the folder for variety.

Students can even design and doodle animal, robot, or alien avatars! With PicCollage there is no limit to what they can design, and students are great at coming up with new ideas to search or draw.


Erin Flanagan is technology enthusiast, the teacher behind Erintegration, and a PicCollage Ambassador.  It is her passion to help teachers by sharing resources, lesson plans, reviews, and tips for using iPads, Google Apps, and other devices to engage digital learners in all curriculum areas. Connect with her on FacebookTwitterPinterest and Instagram to see how she’s integrating technology across the curriculum and be sure to tag her to share other ways you have used PicCollage!

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