Tutorials have grown to be an important genre in online video space. Since 2013, the grade 7 media studies course in St. John’s covers this genre in detail. The goal of producing tutorials is to encourage student interaction, purposeful conversations, and growth in English speaking skills and vocabulary.
Needless to say, in the meantime students gain confidence in the complex field of media literacy. They actively create audiovisual communication (sound, image, rhythm), experiment with text on screen (color, size, composition), perform basic manipulations (speed, contrast, sound effects). All the while talking and performing in English.
In our view, media literacy skills, such as Google searching, have practically become key competences for 21st century learners. But they won’t get you far unless your language skills are appropriately developed to be an effective searcher, researcher, explorer.
We ask students to create video tutorials about something they’re good at, something they feel they know well enough to share with their peers. Instantly, they research the existing tutorials of their chosen theme.
Currently we have 7 tutorials in production, with topics ranging from stop-motion animation to paper planes, from layups in basketball to juggling, from using a digital drawing board to tying a tie in 10 seconds. While creating these tutorials, students handle media equipment with confidence, making the necessary mistakes to move on to a higher level of challenge in grade 8.
Stay tuned for more!
By Miki Ambrozy – Middle School Media Educator