T+L in Dallas

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     Since a number of our DEN colleagues are packing and heading to Dallas for the National School Board Association’s T+L twentieth anniversary conference this week and since this conference was my first official event as a DEN member, I thought that I would make it the focus of this blog for the week. Of course, we will have a digital storytelling point of view.
     Just like last year, NSBA and Apple Computer teamed up for a Student Moviefest. This was the third annual opportunity for students to enter their work and compare it to other schools in their grade level. 2006’s challenge was in one of my favorite genres: a movie coming attraction. I think this format is a natural for education. Students are very familiar with it and they have to have a good understanding of their subject (a book, play, scientific fact/event, etc.) to boil it down to a minute or so of quick cuts and action packed teasers. I am also impressed with the powers that be deciding to offer an honorable mention for each grade level along with a winner. The quality of entries must have been strong! And how about featuring this kind of work for school board members? What better way to show these key decision makers what a powerful and motivating use of technology movie making can be!
     I’ll start with the K-5 group the first day, then move on to the middle grades, finishing with high school. You will see that though there might be thirteen years difference between the youngest and the oldest videographers, the same sophisticated tools and editing techniques are available across the board. You can take a look for yourself at the NSBA’s T+L Moviefest page and think about adding your own observations to this blog.

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