ACTION RESEARCH PLAN AND TIMELINE

Purpose:
The purpose of Student Provocateurs, my action research project, is to integrate technology, story telling though film, and learning with the goal of improving environmental preservation and public awareness.

Situation:
Many programs provide rich film exposure such as The American Film Institute's Silver Theatre and Cultural Center which offers the Educational Screenings Program (ESP) for Washington area public and private Schools, the Screen Education Center, also sponsored by AFI, Apple Education Movie Books which helps young students bring their artistic stories to life, and the British Film Institute which believes in enhancing education through video integration. Few educational film programs however, encourage students to become actively involved in not only telling a story but also increasing public awareness of important environmental issues.

Research Questions:
Can a program that teaches students to utilize film as a medium of storytelling and change, create increased public awareness and discussion about topics important to the students?

Background Research:
Adams, Leslie, 2005. The Digitization of Learning. T.H.E. Journal 32 no11 June 2005
Carey, Kathy, 2006. Fame at an Early Age. Montessori Life, Vol. 18, No. 2, 2006
Davidson, U.S. and Page-Quail, Catherine, 2002. Osborne High’s Mass Digital Transformation. T.H.E. Journal 29 no7 50-2 February 2002
Derby, John, 2005. Accountable for the implementation of secondary visual arts standards in Utah and Queensland. Masters Thesis, Brigham and Young University, March 2005
eSchool News, Staff Report, Golf Coast Students share stories via video http://www.eschoolnews.com/news/showStoryts.cfm?ArticleID=6539&page=1
Epstein, C.D., Hovancsek, M.T., Dolan, P.L., Durner, E., La Rocco, N., Preiszig, P., and Winner, C., 2003. Lights! Camera! Action!: Video projects in the classroom. Journal of Nursing Education, Vol. 42, Issue 12, December 2003.
Gentile, D.A., Walsh, D. A. 2002. A normative study of family media habits. Applied Developmental Psychology, Vol. 23, 2002.
Gold, Rebecca, 2002. Multi Media Comes of Age. Multimedia School 9 no2 14-20 March/April 2002
Huang, Jianli, 2006. Positioning the student political activism of Singapore: Articulation, contestation and omission. Inter-Asia Cultural Studies, Vol. 7, Issue 3, September 2006.
Larson, R. and Hansen, D., 2005. The development of strategic thinking: Learning to impact human systems in a youth activism program. Human Development, Vol. 48, Issue 6, November 2005.
Lindroth, Linda, 2004. How To…Create a Digital Movie. Teach PreK-8 35 no3 November/December 2004
Mangan, Katherine, 2005. Make Videos: An Education Course Puts Students in Director’s Chairs. The Chronical of Higher Education B6, b10 June 24 2005 supp
McLuhan, Marshall, and Fiore, Quentin, 1967. The Medium is the Message. Bantam Books, New York, New York, 1967.
McGinn, Florance, 2000. Digital cameras and video cameras in the classroom. Media and Methods 37 no1 September/October 2000
NCREL, 2005. 21st Century Skills. http://www.ncrel.org/engauge/skills/growup.htm
Northern Territory News, Australia, 2005. Making Movies. Nationwide News Pty Limited, features pg 18, September 5, 2006.
OneWorld.net, 2006. OneWorld US Special Report: Youth Activism and Global Engagement: Part 1, 2006. http://www.benton.org/OneWorldUS/Aron/aron1.html
Patton, Carol, 1999. Using Video Cameras in Schools. Media and Methods 36 no2 14 November/December 1999
Pede, Elliot, 2001. Call in the SWAT team. Learning and Leading with Technology 28 no7 April 2001
Robinson, Sir Ken, 2006. The importance of creativity in education. TEDTalks (Sir Ken Robinson), 2006
Scot, Tammy Pandina and Harding, Diane, 2004. Splicing Video into the Writing Process. Learning and Leading with Technology 32 no1 26-7, 29, 31, September 2004
Van Horn, Royal, 2001. Digital Video: get with it! Phi Delta Kappan 82 no10 June 2001

What I have learned from these resources:
Film is a medium that, from its earliest days, has shown the world great new visions, imagination, and creativity. Since its inception, film has also helped to shape social theories and ideas and create a medium for carrying powerful and provocative ideas. The importance of film can be seen today in the numbers of people viewing and attending films as well as the number of Internet sites dedicated to video. Sites like YouTube.com have become influential voices that can reach millions of daily viewers.

School have been active participants in the growth of film in the educational setting. The demand for ideas and projects has created hundreds of Internet sites dedicated to film and educational lessons involving video. As our children become more and more visually literate, they are in need of educational opportunities that can help grow and focus their ideas and efforts. Student Provocateurs offers students an opportunity to express their collective voice and witness first-hand the power and importance of civic action and participation.

Community of Practice:
I will be spending time with the 6th grade classroom of Deb Barone, the student group that will be creating their film. Having taught 5-8th grade for seven years prior to this action research project, I will be working with Ms. Barone and her students to help them through the process of film making from idea generation to final public presentation. I will be acting as mentor and expert for this project. Students will be able to ask questions via email and in-person as necessary. I will be visiting the class weekly and more during times of intense work and focus.

Further, I am a member of a larger community of people and organizations that are interested in the ideas and possible outcomes from Student Provocateurs. The Organic Center has been a generous benefactor of this work and a valuable resource for the students and myself. Casey Farms has been chosen as the back-drop for the students film. Casey Farms is a member of The New England Historical Society who has given permission for the use of Casey Farms. Mike Hutchenson, the director of Casey Farms, has been working with me and will be working with the students to help the films development and contribute his expertise as necessary. Lastly, I am a research associate with Technology For Learning Consortium, Inc. They have graciously allowed the use of their video, sound, and editing equipment for the production of the “Making Your Mavie.”

My Actions (cycle 1)
Research Questions

Question 1:
Are there films available that teach students to make films of their own?
Action – There were no publicly available film that teach students who to make a film of their own. Therefore, a film needs to be created.
Action – The film “Making Your Movie” was created to meet this need.

Question 2:
Can watching “Making Your Movie” help students to create their own film?
Action – Students will watch “Making Your Movie”
Action – Students will then be asked to

Question 3:
Will watching “Making Your Movie” along with getting written details of how to write a script, create a storyboard, and produce the film help students to produce a film of their own?
Action – Give students written materials from “Making Your Movie” that detail the process that went into the films creation.
Action – Work with students to develop their script, storyboard, and produce film

Artifacts Collected:
I will be collecting the following;
• Student interviews
• Teacher interviews
• Footage of student process
• “Making Your Movie”
• Student film
• Documentation of student film production and process

Evaluation:
Evaluation of the effectiveness of this program will combine all of the collected artifacts into a summative report listing the effects of the process on the students, their progress towards increasing understanding of the filmmaking process, and their understanding and feelings towards their position and role in society. The evaluation will also include a documentary film that records the process the students undergo in learning about, studying, creating, producing, and showing their own film.

For Student Provocateurs, there will be many measures for success. First, the interest and engagement of the students should increase. Second, students will be more willing to actively participate in civic action and encourage public discourse on issues they feel are important. Third, public attention will increase around the issue chosen by the students as indicated by public reaction and discourse after the showing.

Plan (cycle 2)
While the outcomes and my reflections on them may change my plans dramatically, my current thoughts on my second cycle of action are:

Question 1:
Will watching the student’s film increase public awareness and dialogue about the topics from the film?
Action – Interview audience before and after the film
Action – Ask audience to complete short questionnaire before and after the film

Question 2:
Can a third film be created that documents the student’s progress throughout the Student Provocateurs Program that helps to shape the project in the future?
Action – I will be filming and documenting the students work

Question 3:
Will making Student Provocateurs three films, all documentation, script materials, student work, teacher reactions and recommendations, and public reactions available publicly via the Internet seed additional Student Provocateur Programs?
Action – Post all material to a Student Provocateurs website.
Action – Link Student Provocateurs website to as many educational websites as possible
Action – Spread the word about the free program to schools through emails to existing and new contacts.

 
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