As I watched students this week creating videos for a district wide competition I decided to come up with a list of the benefits of integrating
video creation into the curriculum.
- Engages students in the writing process - Before getting their hands on cameras and computers students storyboard the scenes they plan on having in their movie. They write scripts, develop the narration and acting prompts for each scene. Together they edit, revise and map out the direction of their movie.
- Problem Solving - Even after writing, editing and revising their initial copy, students will encounter issues with their original plans. This is a great opportunity to be creative on the fly, adding to their creations.
- Models the process professionals go through - One of the most powerful, real-life stories I tell students is that of published author Eric Wilson, a former teacher who wrote stories for his students. They loved them so much they encouraged him to send them to a publisher. His first 5 books were rejected. He later learned that publishers were very keen on his style and content but he needed to do a better job of revising and mapping out his storyies. So that's exactly what he did.
- Provides for collaboration - Through the whole process students learn to work as a team. Together they generate ideas, write, revise, edit, evaluate their plans, use cameras, direct scenes, use software and finally produce an end product. Each one of these elements requires a team working together on the same vision and plan.
- End product can deliver a powerful message - There are so many examples of quality videos created by students. Students at Sir George Ross Secondary School in London created a critically acclaimed anti-bullying video called "Angel" that used slow motion video and powerful soundtrack from Sarah McLachlan. Student Voice can shine through!
- Allows all students to participate in some manner - Creating together allows all students an opportunity to showcase their talents. For example students who may be weak writers will learn from their classmates and contribute their acting skills or proficiency with video editing software.
- Students learn to use multiple pieces of technology efficiently - After completing writing, editing and revising students use multiple pieces of technology to complete the project. They could use iphones, digital cameras, video cameras, green screens, screen capture software, movie creation software, and audio creation software - combining them all together in the final product.
- It can be cross curricular - Video creation can happen in any subject area. In fact it should be encouraged. Anything from creating a Public Service Announcement about the dangers of drugs to evaluating a golf swing can be a great motivator for students to demonstrate and apply their understanding.
- Kids love it! - I can't think of a better reason to implement video creation. I have yet to see a group of students not be totally engaged and on task when given the task of creating a movie.
I would love to hear any other ideas you have. Keep an eye out in the next week or so when I post their videos.