Students Adopt Software to Create Digital Stories

Technology continues to spark creativity.  

Students around the country are creating news broadcasts and award-winning short documentaries that are making a difference in their community. Last year, ten students at Rancho Minerva Middle School crafted a four-minute documentary on the importance of digital equity. The young filmmakers explained how students can find free Wi-Fi hotspots in their neighborhoods and interviewed the school principal, who described his efforts to increase students’ broadband access at home.

The video went on to win multiple awards for its creativity and presentation. In fact, the school board purchased 200 mobile wireless hotspots that the school’s students could borrow and take home at no cost so that their family members could enjoy fast internet access.

Thanks to the popularity of YouTube, social media, and mobile devices, online video has become ever more prevalent in today’s society, especially among children. Schools have taken this on board and are engaging students with modern technology. School districts are beginning to embrace digital storytelling and are teaching students to progress their multimedia skills, such as video production.

Video production allows students to learn about potential careers in broadcasting and filmmaking, all the while honing important skills, such as creativity, critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and meeting deadlines.

“We’re asking them to become independent learners and problem solvers,” says Melissa Julian, technology director at Pittsford Central School District in New York. “It’s not a simple book report, where they are taking information and regurgitating it in a similar format. It’s taking artistic license and the concept of storytelling and putting their own spin on things.”

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