The next phase of the project was to prepare some type of media that could be placed on the school’s webpage. The students’ minds automatically went to video. So . . . video it was!! Now, if I’m being completely honest, my video skills are NOT the best; however, I am up for the challenge to learn with my students! The equipment that I had to use was an iPhone.
How did we do this? It was quite fun!
The same student expert groups prepared scripts about their topic and practiced. Once they felt their work was ready, we had a sharing day. All the student groups had an opportunity to share their “skit” with the class, gain feedback, and were able to rework the skit to perfection. The students developed a lot of soft skills working together: critical thinking, problem solving, collaborating, and social emotional as well as the academic: literacy, math, and technology were a big focus!
Once the students had their work ready to videotape, other students took turns helping with the video process or my husband would come in and help with some “onsite” out of the classroom video work. Getting the videos recorded took quite a while. Why? Even though the students thought their group was ready, when videotaping, they would realize they needed more practice. This was a great learning moment for the students – the self reflective piece to presenting your BEST work! AMAZING!! I didn’t even have to say anything about that.
Students developed soft and academic skills.
Once the videos were recorded I spent time piecing and editing the videos for the students using iMovie. This would have been a great piece for the students to do; however, I really needed an extra set of hands to do this in the classroom with the students. I was looking for a program that the students could use on their chrome books to edit the video, but this was taking a lot of research time AND I had no funding to purchase the items I did find. So . . . I edited the movies and then the students watched their video. I had my husband work with each group to ensure the video was the way they wanted it to run. If they wanted to make a change, the students then made the changes to their video. I wanted the kids to really OWN their work.
The videos turned out great!!! This project based unit provided many learning opportunities for the students – ones that they would not have received in a traditional classroom setting.
We had a “movie premier” day and enjoyed some popcorn and drinks while watching our own movies!! The families loved this event!
Annette has been an educator for more than 30 years working in the PK-6 elementary classroom, English learner instructional specialist, district leadership, university professor, as well as a mentor for teachers nationwide. A National Board Certificated Teacher, Annette focuses her research on accelerating learning and advancing achievement, personalizing instruction, technology, and leadership in the education field.