Commercial Trips and Résumés

     With professional video tools available to anyone on any platform, the stage for “home-made” videos just keeps getting bigger.
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      I got my weekly email from the Travel Channel this morning and it seems that they are hosting a contest for people to make a “FANtasy” commercial based on their own trip experiences. The Travel Channel is even supplying the music! The contest probably isn’t very appropriate or practical for schools considering all the permissions you would need. BUT it is a great idea for any class who would like to “sell” a trip to a place of interest in their local community or anywhere that is or WAS tied to what you are studying in your class. No need to share it beyond the walls of your classroom or school. Not too long ago a school district in Springfield, IL made a laser disc about Abraham Lincoln and his life in central Illinois. Foreign language classes could have a field day with this, virtually visiting and promoting a country in the target language. ESL/ELL students could not only use it to learn about places in the U.S., but also as a way to honor and share where they’ve come from themselves. Euclid or Pythagoras could promote the intellectual and aesthetic of their time and place. Green screen technology would lend itself well to this, but you don’t need that to simply cut in pictures of people and places. Travel anywhere through your curriculum. Bon voyage!
     This morning’s email also brought word from eSchool News that there is a debate in education over the value of video résumés. I think the selling points are obvious as is the hesitation. Being seen and heard is a two edged sword, but just how much more so than the slick, typed vitae or the anxious phone call? Coincidentally, our New York based actor/singer/dancer son has just landed his second out of state role with a combination of email attached song and a web video. In my former school district I helped athletes put together highlight tapes of their play to send out to colleges. There is a privacy inherent in sending a tape and I see that attempt to protect privacy in the two résumé websites that eSchool News cites: resumebook.tv and workblast.com . What do you think?

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