Tuesday, May 14, 2013

“Why School? The Movie” Update - Got video?

Update from Will Richardson

A few weeks ago we posed a big question: Could our little edu-network make a REAL full-length documentary feature that incorporates kids in every aspect of the production process? It appears we’re going to find out. Within days, hundreds of you volunteered to help make this admittedly ambitious undertaking become a reality. (If you haven’t signed on and still want to help, fill out our survey now!) 
As a result, we have formed a core group of amazing people focused on marketing, fundraising and developing a comprehensive web presence. All of this structural support makes it possible for us to dig in deep and craft a compelling narrative for this film.
To reiterate, Doug, Josh and I decided right from the start that this film could and should be built by the people who are most affected by education policy—namely kids, parents, and teachers. Instead of just talking about the problems with school in its current form, we’d like to see “our” film driven by what the community is actually doing. So, we’re setting the bar as high as possible to show what happens when kids are given the opportunity to do meaningful work, and prove that we can transform the focus and function of school. The next step is to engage with everyone out there thinking, writing, creating, and putting their ideas into action for the benefit of kids.
We’d like to hear from you, get a glimpse of what you are doing, and potentially include footage of your kids doing meaningful things in and outside of your classrooms. Here’s how you can help:
Send us high quality HD video footage of kids, teachers and classrooms that we can use in a teaser trailer we are putting together to fundraise, promote, and build excitement for the movie. This footage will also help us better visualize what the final feature will look like, although at this point we are not specifically looking for footage or stories for that purpose (yet). Some ideas of what we’re looking for include:
  • Kids (and teachers) sharing ideas and creations publicly
  • Kids designing their own experience to learn through inquiry, research, collaboration, and creating
  • Kids (and teachers) collaborating with colleagues, classmates, and experts around the world
  • Kids creating works that have real value outside the classroom
Submitting your videos of powerful learning is simple. You may provide a link to videos hosted on YouTube, Vimeo, or anywhere else on the web. For this teaser trailer we will likely use only a few seconds of any clip so if there is a specific part of the video we should look closely at, please identify that. If we want to use part of your video in this trailer we will ask for you to send us a file in full HD (1080p) format and have everyone in the video, and their parents, sign release forms.
We’d love to get your submissions by June 1. You can e-mail Josh and Doug at  if you have any questions about the process.
Finally, we’re now also on Twitter and Facebook. Follow us and like us to keep up with our progress. Our new website will be up soon as well.
Thanks for all the support and enthusiasm you’ve already shown for this project. With your help we know it will be awesome!


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