By any means necessary…

You can skip the post and vote right here(we’re the fourth school down):
(Voting ended May 9th, but maybe they forgot to close it so feel  free to click an attempt!)

I choose Stonehill College 28 years ago because their teaching program put you into the classroom first semester freshman year.  I was placed into an elementary classroom and my professor was Allan Leitman.  Our first job was to produce a video with the elementary class.  It was a big clunky video camera, and we used two Beta decks to record and edit.  If you are of a certain age you know what I am talking about…    I don’t know if all the videos we produced for Professor Leitman count as “digital story telling,” but I know when I first heard the term coined I thought to myself that I was glad I met Professor Leitman way back in 1987.

Digital story telling is powerful stuff.  Putting a video camera in a kids hands and giving them the opportunity to create a story, instead of consuming one, is powerful stuff.  Over the years I have spent lot of money buying cameras to use in my class.  It is difficult to do digital story telling with 1 camera and 100 kids.  It’s even harder to find a place to edit all those videos.  It is even scarier to watch middle school kids pass your camera around that is supposed to be recording your own kid’s concert later that night 🙂

This is yet another year in which our proposed school budget will get cut further.  There will be no video cameras and editing equipment in this budget, there hasn’t been any in the last 24 budgets that I have been a part of.  As I come to the twilight of my career I finally can smell the chance to put a video camera into the hand of each of my kids.  My class entered the ACER Classroom Makeover contest and we are one of the finalists.  If we win we get a set of class tablets.  Not only cameras, but an HD camera, editing station, and research center all-in-one tool.  I simply cannot imagine the freedom it will give a kid to be creative.  No longer will our digital story telling and other video work be confined to “special” projects only when I can bring in my camera.

My kids created a pretty cool video for the contest

It was a blast and we have finally figured out how to green screen and looking forward to being able to produce higher quality green screen videos in the future! 

One of the most influential books that I ever read was the Autobiography of Malcolm X.  I am going to try and get votes for my kids “By any means necessary.”  I have written my high school, my elementary school, wrote a post a month ago, have tweeted it out, every conference session my kids have led this month has ended with a “vote for us” advertisement, and here is yet one more post asking for your support.  

I hate having to ask for a vote, so instead I ask that you visit the site an vote for one class.  If you like our video above, we are the fourth class down on the Acer website which can be found here:  Voting ends May 9, 2014.

If you are worried that you will be putting it into the hands of a class that will just use it as an expensive notebook,  here are some examples of us singing songs, making complicated things simple, making simple videos about complicated things, making complicated videos about complicated things,  taking other’s ideas and adding our own twist,  just having fun with history, and we do audio only too!  For a deeper look into our class please watch our “classroom commercial.”  I think you will see that we will put the tablets to very good use.

Please consider voting for us.

Please consider passing along the link. (Here is a another!)

Thank you.

And yes, we will use the tablets for things other than digital story telling, but that is what I am most excited about!

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