What is happening in your class that students will remember in twenty years? Is the upcoming project one that will be the subject of those fun “Remember when we…” conversations that characterize the most memorable learning experiences we have?
Clearly, not every learning moment is going to rise to that standard. Still, when we move beyond the (possibly painfully) predictable, we create the conditions for students to discover something new in themselves and in their sense of their future possibilities.
I encountered a former student of mine at an event in Silicon Valley some time ago, and he asked me, “Mr. Hurley, remember those video projects we did in your class?” I did. “That was my favorite part of high school,” he added.
I remember being struck that the video projects had such an impact on him. He talked about the chance to work with others and how they really let their creativity infuse what they put together. They also loved that everyone got to see each other’s videos.
As I say often, if students know that others will see their work, they want it to be good. If it’s just for the teacher, they want it to be good enough.
Over the next couple of months, you have a chance to help students share powerful stories in video through the Global Student Voice Film Festival. It’s a contest run by a team of four organizations: NextVista.org, ISTE, WeVideo, and EdTechTeam. Winning videos will be shown at ISTE in Chicago this summer, and scholarships will help students attend to be celebrated for their work.
The theme is “In Another’s Shoes,” and can be interpreted in an original story or as a biographical sketch. Videos should be no longer than two minutes (with up to another minute for credits, which are a big deal in this contest). Get the details (and get involved) at:
Chances are good this is something they’ll remember!
Rushton Hurley (@rushtonh): Rushton is the founder, executive director, and lead janitor of Next Vista for Learning. He is the author of Making Your School Something Special and Making Your Teaching Something Special, both from EdTechTeam Press. In addition to doing whatever he can to inspire teachers, he juggles, cleans up after his cat, and firmly believes he married up. He is also a regular presenter at, and big fan of, the Michigan Association of Cool, which is what he thinks MACUL stands for. You can visit his website at http://rushtonh.com/