Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Socially Aware Videos

My middle school students just wrapped up a project called Socially Aware Videos.  I selected five social issues and public service announcement videos to match them. Then, students broke into pairs to create their own videos about one of those same five social issues.

Overall, I'm proud of what they were able to create, mostly sitting in the classroom.  Both groups chose bullying as their issue (though one of them combined bullying with social media).  In the future, I may delete that issue from the project for a couple reasons.  One, there is so much talk these days about bullying that I think it wasn't too enlightening.  There are other topics out there that I would like wake them up with (water conservation, adoption, etc.).  Two, recording videos about bullying opens the doors to students enacting bullying situations, which -- trust me -- can lead to issues with parents and administrators.

The first video is actually a series of videos, strung together by a Prezi. Most of those videos were created on Animoto.  Not a bad idea, but I recommended to the students that it would have been better to use iMovie or Capture to create one big video.

The second video was about bullying and social media.  It is created to be like a talk show with an example of cyberbullying through texting.  Nicely done!

What I love about teaching this middle school course is giving them an assignment and watching them tackle it.  They learn the apps and software they want to use and figure things out as they go. While they are learning about social issues, they are really becoming more comfortable with the technology at their fingertips.  It's a great combination!

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