Monday, November 18, 2013

iMovie Trailers Across the Content Areas (republish)

This post originally appeared in September of 2013 on my Discovery Educator Network blog, Kathy's Katch, where I pen a monthly blog post. Please take a look at it when you get a a chance. The new posts go up the first day of the month!



I have finally had time to work with iMovie movie trailers on the iPad, and it is so much fun! A movie trailer is a perfect summarizing activity. It can also act as a "teaser" as an introduction to a presentation or student paper. A movie trailer can readily showcase the acquisition of knowledge of a lesson or unit. 

A movie trailer includes many of the literacy areas. There is a component of information literacy as students search for and gather assets to include in the trailer. There are reading and writing skills (traditional literacy) as students write out their ideas and scripts. There are elements of media literacy as students identify their audience, use words to persuade viewers, and maybe transfer another mode of publishing (like a research paper) into a video. Visual literacy comes into play with the choice of colors and font. 

The movie trailer component of the iMovie app for the iPad includes several themes to pick from. The transitions and animations are already built-in, but students can do some editing of these themes to showcase their work in a different way. 

The first step in making an iMovie movie trailer is taking a look at the script and storyboard pages. It is a good idea for students to spend some time thinking about the theme of the trailer they want to use and start gathering the pictures and videos to use in the production. 

One great site by Timothy Jefferson includes PDFs of all of the theme scripts so students can work things out on paper first, as they are going through the development process. Here is a sample of one of the PDFs. 

storyboard sample

Some ideas for using movie trailers across the curriculum include:
  • Have students create an "end of course or class" trailer to introduce others to the course
  • Students can create an advertisement for a product they created in a STEM class.
  • Movie trailers can put a new spin on the "all about me" presentation.
  • Students can help create promo pieces for upcoming school events, class elections, and fund-raising activities
  • A movie trailer can be a very short, but exciting digital story, summarizing the content and/or process in any curriculum area
  • Roz Linder's ideas for using movie trailers as a way to introduce different viewpoints
  • Filmeducation.org's great resource about the use of film trailers in the classroom
  • Mr. Manion's Movie Trailer Analysis which could easily be turned into a rubric
You can also find many tutorials which include instructions on the process of using iMovie movie trailers on the iPad
Discovery Education Streaming, with its editable videos and hundreds of images, is a wonderful set of resources to use in iMovie movie trailers. I decided to utilize DES to make an iMovie movie trailer and only use the iPad. 

I logged in to Discovery Education Streaming, did three searches (tornado, storm, lightning) and limited the search to images. I added the images to My Content. When I had collected enough (with three personal ones also), I opened each one and "saved to library" which then put all the images into my Photos app Camera Roll. 

I picked the Scary trailer theme, entered the credits information, and added the images to the storyboard, as you see below. I adjusted some of the Ken Burns transitions to highlight the important parts of the photos. 

iMovie Movie Trailer scrneechot 

I then simply sent the completed movie trailer up to YouTube! 
Give iMovie movie trailers a try today! 

Do you have some ideas for the use of iMovie Trailers across the content areas? Email me or find me on Twitter @kathyschrock