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Keywords: Flip Video, Literature, History, Video Production
Subject(s): Video, Writing, Reading, English/Language Arts, Drama
Grades 9 through 12
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
  • Digital Citizenship
  • Technology Operations and Concepts
View Full Text of Standards
School: Eldorado High School, Albuquerque, NM
Planned By: Lauren McDougall
Original Author: Lauren McDougall, Albuquerque
Conceptual Basis for Lesson: The inspiration for this activity came from a student who wrote a dialogue between Hamlet and Sigmund Freud. This project allows students to actively participate in reviewing significant literary and historical information from their high school years. As part of the process, they must work collaboratively to select significant characters and figures, provide them with appropriate dialogue (often with a focus on shared subjects, such as love, war, death, family), and compose a script, storyboard, and a polished video. This project takes about one month to complete. (I only see students 3 days per week.) The 5-7 minute video is due right before final exams, which generally take place the second week of May.

Performance Tasks: To frame the assignment, students create a list of memorable literary and historical figures and the entire class discusses the selections. Then, they select one literary character and one historical figure and create a dialogue. After presenting these to the class, they begin to develop a script with their group, focusing on the initial setting of a bus stop. (The bus stop is a reference to a comment made by a student while reading Waiting for Godot, an existential text that reminded him of "waiting for a bus that never comes." Even though he has long since graduated, the shared setting serves to create an opportunity for a diverse group to assemble for an exchange.)
Students work in self-selected groups of 3-4 (and they may recruit other actors if necessary). Next, they begin to create a script and storyboard, which they have seen previously in the year (with a Hamlet project and when they created book trailer videos for their Independent Reading selections).
Students re-visit texts from the last four years, as well as notes from their History and Psychology classes, in order to accurately portray a character or figure's words, motivations, values, and attitudes. They also spend in-class time discussing the similarities and differences among selected characters and figures.
We have a week of state-mandated testing of Juniors, which allows perfect timing for Seniors to meet with me and for them to film and edit their videos. After approving their scripts and storyboards, they have about 5 days to film and about 10 days to edit.

Assessment: Each step of the project is assessed, including the script and storyboard. This is the grading sheet for the final project.
Grading Sheet for “Universal Bus Stop”
Group Members ______________________________________________

Title of Production _____________________________________

Accuracy of Presentation of Each Literary Character __________ / 200 pts
motivation, conflicts, beliefs, values, attitudes

Interaction between Characters / Pace / Fluidity __________ / 75 pts

Creative / Interesting / Amazing / Quality Work __________ / 75 pts

TOTAL __________ 350 pts

Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Students incorporate their knowledge of historical figures, script-writing, and storyboards.
Materials: Flip Video, Camera/Video Accessories, Camera Bags, Flash/USB Drives, Tripods, Batteries, CDs and DVDs, Cables, Headsets, Animation, Video Tools, Sound Libraries