I've gone through this great blender animation tutorial.
It's really well made, and teaches you blender from the beginning - explaining everything as you go.
It was a "Blender summer of documentation" project where someone spent a whole month working on it. It was also based on an older tutorial which was itself really good There's a downloadable PDF version (180ish pages) if you prefer to read things that way - otherwise it's broken up into many separate html pages. It's also got .blend files you can download at every step if you wish - so you can skip steps.
So if you want to go from knowing nothing about blender, to being able to construct and animate a basic 3d character - this is the tutorial for you.
Introduction to Character Animation - with blender