Turning Poems Into Videos

This week we took the poems that the Jr. Viewfinders wrote and turned them into videos. We wanted the the youth to get some practice operating a camera for video and doing a little bit of video editing. We started by having everyone record their poems. Youth took turns operating the camera, setting up the shot, and reading their poems. A lot of youth in our program are really interested in cameras, both photo and video. They're already using Instagram all the time--taking pictures, recording themselves, going live. So, rather than resist their interest (and sometimes obsession) with their phones, we try to use what we know they like to make engaging lesson plans. It worked out well in this case with the youth being excited about using the cameras for video and enjoying being recorded.

After they recorded their poems, the youth looked on the internet for photos that represented what they said home was for them. We also had asked them to bring in photos or videos that fit into their poems, but only a few youth actually did that, so we turned to the internet. Luckily, a lot of them used some images from their social media accounts, along with images they found on the internet. 

We had planned to do a shared screencast, so that we could do a video editing tutorial on Adobe Premiere. We thought it would help for them to see how it worked on their individual computer screens. Unfortunately, as often happens with after school programming, it didn't go exactly as planned and the screencast didn't happen. Instead, we offered one-on-one help and support to the youth on how to do video editing. While this wasn't very efficient, it did result in some awesome videos! Also, we did instill the basics of Premiere and video editing, which was a huge plus. Check out some examples below.