Monday, April 24, 2017

I Love iMovie.

iMovie by Alex McDonnell Recently, I was speaking with the Middle School principal at my school Our conversation meandered about as it always does - shes' super organized, it is I who meanders- and at one point in the conversation she shared that she notices how often students are making movies on their iPads.

That's simply fantastic news without any of my usual caveats or howevers attached to it. So I will leave this point hanging here all by itself. It is great news. Veritably.

Going forward we need to think about how to build on this. Most  Virtually all the movies students make are simply short plays that happen to be filmed. There are basic steps to writing a good paper. There are basic steps one needs to know to tackle a math problem. We have been neglectful at teaching these basic film-making and narrative techniques to students.

I am a novice in this area myself. I know some basics that we taught to me by Josh Weisgrau. When I taught 5th grade, I shared my knowledge of these basics and some kids made some very fine short films. (Full disclosure, I am sharing this as an example of a fine short film. This wasn't made solely with iMovie.)

iMovie works great on both IOS and MacOS (short names for iphone operating system (and iPad) and full Mac operating system) . I am more familiar with the iPad version and it works great. It is easy to use, easy to learn and easy to teach. I like how simple it is to craft an nice video. I like how easily it app smashes with other tools such as iMotion, GarageBand and SparkVideo.

Students I have worked with have made iMovies for short films, documentaries, music projects and poetry visualizations and book reviews (made with the trailer feature).  Students like the tool and are able to use it adeptly after a 20 minute introduction on how to use it. By the way, when introducing a new tool, find it useful to have kids explore the app themselves in small groups and then come back and share within their groups all that they have found. This takes a bit longer to do, but it is my preferred method. 

I teach in a 1-1 iPad school and too many of my posts point to tools that don't work so effectively or work at all on and iPad. It is important for me to point out some of the things that I really like about my iPad. iMovie is faster and to my mind easier to use than WeVideo. (WeVideo has its strengths as well- most notably the ability for students to collaborate.) But for students working alone, iMovie is hard to beat. 

Though not exclusive to the iPad, I like the iPad version better than the MacOS version. And this quick, easy to use tool is a great reason to use an iPad. 

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