Friday, June 24, 2011

Civil War Newscasts: Part III

So I finally have some time to finish this three part post on a major collaborative project that my classes did over the Civil War at then end of the school year.  If you haven't had a chance please check out my first two posts here and here. 

Immediately after filming was completed, students began the arduous task of editing their work.  I knew this would be time consuming so the students had three days in class as well as the weekend to finish editing their newscasts.

The students had an option on what type of editing software they could use. 

The first choice was an online editing service called Jaycut.  This was the option for those students that either didn't have a Mac or weren't proficient with Windows Movie Maker.  Jaycut, in theory, is a great idea.  Everything is saved in the cloud.  In reality, it took a lot of time for videos to upload.  Part of the issue was probably the school server, so I'd suggest that students use Jaycut from home.

Another editing choice was Windows Movie Maker.  I like this software, but it was not an easy fit with some of the flip cameras (see previous post) that we used.  Files had to be converted which can be a lengthy process as well. Here is a video tutorial:

Options three and four were two bits of editing software using the Mac:  Final Cut (more expensive) and iMovie.  Both of these worked the best for classroom use, and they did not have the issues of Jaycut and Movie Maker.  Of course, the drawback is that we do not have a Mac lab at school.  However, we were very fortunate that our principal allowed students to bring their Macs to class. 

The final part of the project was to have the students present their newscast.  Most students brought the video in on a flash drive or sent it via email if they were using Jaycut.  We watched these in chronological order, and I graded them using the checklist on the teacher instruction sheet.

All in all, this was a great cumulative project to end the year.  It incorporated a project based atmosphere, dug deeper into content, and allowed for students to become active learners.

 If you enjoyed this post please consider joining my Twitter PLN @HistoryandTech. As always, comments are welcome and appreciated.
Continue to enjoy your summer,


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