Filmmaking in the Classroom
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Integrating filmmaking into educational settings as a teaching and learning tool strengthens teacher practice, improves student media literacy skills, engagement, comprehension, communication, and critical thinking skills while supporting core curriculum requirements for arts education.
There is no turning back...
A digital age propelled by our youth has changed the course of education. Digital media and the media arts are now embedded throughout multiple local and national educational standards- part of the educational mainstream. Students are not only charged with interpreting, analyzing, and synthesizing works of digital media across multiple forms and formats, but also with generating, contextualizing, and disseminating their own media creations using an arsenal of ever-evolving tools and techniques. The classroom climate is rapidly shifting to a student-centered workplace where educators guide the knowledge acquisition and creative processâ facilitating a rich contextual framework to elicit inspiration, understanding, points of view, creativity, and original thought.
Today the use of digital storytelling is being practiced in neighborhood community centers, schools, libraries and businesses, by novice technology users to those with advanced skills. In the field of education, teachers and their students, from early childhood classrooms through graduate school, are using digital storytelling in many different content areas and across a wide range of grade
Digital storytelling and the filmmaking methodology can provide educators with a powerful process and set of tools- an engaging teaching strategy that when done right can link academic content with the production of rich digital stories that integrate a variety of multimedia, including video, audio, photography, graphics, and animation. Research has shown that the use of digital media and storytelling in teaching helps contemporary students retain new information as well as aids in the comprehension of difficult material (National Writing Project). This is largely because the emerging generation is surrounded by digital media and therefore more attentive in a technology-rich environment that is more easily customized to their personal interests, needs and pursuits.
Robin, Bernard, Ph.D., University of Houston, College of Education; âUses of Digital Storytellingâ, https://digitalstorytelling.coe.uh.edu/ August 30, 2019.
National Writing Project, âImproving LIteracy Across the Curriculum: A Study of Instructional Development.â www.nwp.org/cs/public/print/resource/3719. Aug. 30, 2014.
Fundamentals of Cinematography
Spending some time learning a few fundamentals of cinematography is worthwhileâ not only will it will improve both the media-making process and product, but it will also save you time in the long run. Here we will introduce you to the fundamental stages of the filmmaking process, from pre-production to production and post-production with an introduction to the key cinematic principles of storytelling, storyboarding, cinematography, and editing. All of these critical digital storytelling elements will help you build media literacy and digital storytelling skills, to help you begin using media arts as a teaching strategy in your classroom.
The traditional story arc is at the essence of almost all stories and the most common format used in filmmaking. Watch V4CUUM-RBT: A Love Story. Identify and discuss the three acts of the film- what happens in Act I, Act II, and Act III?
Visual Storytelling, Shot Styles, and Composition
Learning visual storytelling techniques and employing a myriad of shot styles will play a big role in helping you tell your story, Filmmakers use different shots and camera movements to convey emotion and affect the way the audience thinks and feels about the subject. Watch the Shot Styles and Composition instructional video and use the shot styles handout to practice.
Read the nine sentence story samples and use the template to write yours.
Storyboarding and Cinematography with the Nine Sentence Story
You are now beginning the process of translating the written story to the screen. Watch the Storyboarding instructional video, and the Nine Sentence Story movie samples and study how the nine sentence story #2 was translated to the screen.
Download and print the storyboard PDF and storyboard your nine sentence story (aim for one storyboard per sentence so nine storyboards total).
Shooting, Collecting, and Creating Media
Itâs time to shoot your video. Before cutting loose into production make sure you have established careful equipment checkout protocol and all students clearly understand their roles and responsibilities.
Editing, Exporting and Exhibition
Before beginning editing your footage, watch both the Music and Editing Styles instructional videos. And depending on what software you are using to edit your video, watch an online tutorial. Here are some software suggestions to help you decide what to use:
Tips for managing your media files & student release forms
Use this rubric to assess the filmmaking elements and digital storytelling process
Congratulations! You have made it through bootcamp and here is your Filmmaking Bootcamp certificate.
Tips for Implementing Filmmaking Projects in the Classroom
CLASSROOM EQUIPMENT RECOMMENDATIONS
This list is meant to guide you, though you will still need to decide what is best for you. There is no âblanket bestâ as everyone is working with different budgets and computer equipment. This equipment list is linked to sellers, but we suggest shopping around and exploring educational pricing discounts. Check out this Filmmaking Go Kit if you want everything to fit in one tidy, mobile case. (Total cost of Go Kit including case is about $1200).