Proposed Media Class in 2015

Creativity at the core


English teacher Adam Bearson plans to offer a new media elective next school year. It will be a television and radio class in which students can create videos and podcasts.

Bearson taught media at other schools, and bringing it to Rio is his next step as a teacher.

Students will use services like YouTube (television) and SoundCloud (radio) to make videos and podcasts.

In a typical week, the class will follow a production process that may look like this: a day of viewing successful Youtube/SoundCloud examples, a day of production meetings and learning, and three days of students working on their production.

“I don’t have equipment other than computers in the computer lab,” Bearson said. “I might have a few extra little cameras or recorders but for the most part students will be encouraged to use whatever. It’s sort of a Bring Your Own Device kind of thing.”

Since computers are limited, software is too. Students will mostly be using basic programs like Garageband and iMovie to edit their creations.

Bearson has a degree in digital production, so he will be able to help students with editing.

“I have a fair amount of experience with the software, but it’s not my thing,” Bearson said. “The kids will probably be better at it, I hope. I’m more about the production process, writing, and helping kids tailor a good story.”

Along with writing the stories, he will teach students various other things like storytelling techniques and camera angles (although the lack of cameras makes that a problem).

He plans to make every student have a blog of sorts where they submit all their work, and then putting their best on the class blog. Bearson hopes to have around an hour of content every two weeks.

After, they will try to “market” their creations to other students on campus, inviting them to watch. Bearson will also register the podcasts on iTunes for students to subscribe.

He also says newspaper could utilize the creations to add an audio and video aspect to The Mirada website.

As a creative class, students are allowed to create what they like, but Bearson will have what’s described as a “wheel,” with a different idea on each spoke. Bearson said, “There will be a wheel of different experiences that students have to touch on during the semester, but if you wanted to focus on one particular thing, you can.”

Some of the genres on the wheel include documentaries, narratives, interviews, and even music.

The class is graded, but it focuses on production quality and quantity. Or, if you’re an editor, it would be on the devotion to the work.

He plans for people to do all facets of it, though. By the end of the semester you’ll have written, edited, filmed, and produced a video.

The class has not been confirmed yet, and Bearson needs around thirty students to express interest in the class for it to gain some traction. The elective will not be an A through G elective. Any other details such as what period the class is have not been concluded yet.

“I don’t think the world needs another bad YouTube video,” Bearson said. “The Rio community will benefit from good content.”