Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Ipod Videos Created by my 6th grade

My 6th graders had the chance to use iPods in our English classroom this year during our Medieval Unit.  Every year I teach some lessons on storytelling.  It is a great chance for students to use some higher level skills.  They  read  a medieval tale, then read the history behind it, and get some storytelling pointers (all from this book). They have to synthesize the story and tell it in their own words.

In years past I asked the students to share their storytelling expertise at our feast.  This was not always successful.  Students were never comfortable enough to "tell" the stories in front of other classes, parents, administrators etc.  Even when they were comfortable telling their stories, it was often too busy and noisy to share their expertise well. 

The final project of the iPod pilot project was to use Reel Director to create a movie of their storytelling.  I asked them to read the story and background information, take notes or highlight what they wanted to tell, and tell their story into the voice memo on the iPod.  This was their "rough draft".  Doing this gave them an idea of how long their story was, so they could find images and adjust the length and transitions on their video.  Once they "created" the movie images, they recorded their story in to the Reel Director program and it created the movie. 

Every student completed the assignment (yea!) and excluding a few poor picture choices, and not enough images (the audio ends when the images end, creating an abrupt stop to the story) most of the storytelling movies we amazing. 

We showed the videos on the smart board throughout the feast, and everyone had a chance to see what a great job they did. The videos were evaluated using this rubric.

Here are some of the videos:

Beowulf Slays Grendel

Eleanor of Aquitaine

Robin Hood

Battle of Orleans

Arthur Meets Excalibur