I have used Microsoft gif animator and Image Ready to make my animations. One of the teachers I am working with at the moment wanted me to make some animations with his children (aged about 7 - 8). The machines they are using are Macs with iMovie. I know that we could use iMovie to make the animations but here is a quick and easy (and free..) alternative.
It is called Make animation. It is extremely simple for children to use:
Upload your pictures or photos to make the animation - these can be any type eg jpg, tiff, png
Double click on uploaded picture to add text and draw on it.
Drag 'n drop left icon with top and down arrows to change the animation order
Set size and speed as well as other options and effects
Make the animation by clicking on "make animation"
Your animation will be displayed and you can download it
D & W Publications have simple, easy to use tutorials available for teachers and students - Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Access, PhotoStory3 for Windows, and FrontPage. These are available for $NZ25 plus postage and handling from email@example.com. They are also available in pdf form for $150 for a school - unlimited copies may be made for use within the school OR $25 for a single copy for use.
Web site: http://ictineducation.webege.com/