Teaching the basics of videography and editing to students can feel like a daunting experience sometimes. However, a simple and fun lesson I have developed for my students has proven to pay off with their progress.
Take your students on a video scavenger hunt! Who doesn’t like a scavenger hunt?! By following this lesson, you will be able to teach the basics of Wide, Medium and Tight shots, but you don’t have to worry about storytelling just yet. Then have students take the video they shot during the activity and teach them how to edit those shots together.
I will follow up this post with the editing portion, but here’s my Video Scavenger Hunt activity.
Video Scavenger Hunt
The object of this activity is to give you an opportunity to use a camcorder with a purpose. You are to travel around school, looking for the following video items – all the time practicing skills with the camcorder. Each person in the group must have hands-on time. Do NOT disrupt any classes!
- You MUST use a tripod (if you don’t have a tripod, find a flat surface to set your camera on. Shaky shots are amateur.)
- Shots can be recorded in any order (videos are very rarely ever shot in the order they will be edited)
- Identify the shot number by speaking it into the camera as it is recording
- Each person in the group must have their own set of shots
WS = Wide shot * MS = Medium shot * T = Tight shot
Record EACH shot for at least 15 seconds! (later in editing, we will only choose the best 3-5 seconds of each shot, so we want a lot to choose from)
- Your group walking down a hallway -WS
- Zoom in on a car in the parking lot (don’t get the camera wet if its raining!) – T
- An art teacher or a work of art – MS
- One of the snack or soda machines – T
- A trophy case – T to WS (will have to zoom)
- Students using computers – MS
- Something red. – T
- A teacher, sleeping. Or doing something else – MS
- Shaking hands with a campus police officer, or a Principal. – WS (yes you MUST shake their hand for 15 seconds. Awkward is fun.)
- Interview Rule of Third (proper nose room) for ALL group members. When framed for the interview, each person MUST record and capture saying their name and spelling it. – MS-T (top of the shoulders and up)
Due the end of class – work efficiently & keep the shots steady!
Once students have all their shots, you’re now ready to edit. Inevitably, some of their shots will be slanted, out of focus, not close enough, etc, and that’s fine. Once the students edit their video together later, I would highly recommend you offer them the chance to fix any shots they want. Reshooting and revising your videos are all a part of a successful production.
Check back later for the editing sequence and grade sheet. Until then, have fun!