Teacher Review For iMovie

High-Interest Learning program/app for all students that incorporates writing and speaking skills with creativity

Stephanie W.
Classroom teacher
Pine Brook Elementary School
Englishtown, NJ
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My Grades 6
My Subjects Science
My Rating 4
Learning Scores
Engagement 5
Pedagogy 4
Support 3
My Students Liked It Yes
My Students Learned Yes
I Would Recommend It Yes
Setup Time Less than 5 minutes
Great for Creation
Small group
Student-driven work
Whole class
Great with Advanced learners
Low literacy
Special needs
How I Use It
I used this Program in a whole-class, Technology Course with diverse learners. This was a problem-based learning assignment which incorporated writing, speaking, and hands-on technology experience. Students created Public Service Commercials on a human interest topic like the dangers of smoking or the importance of exercise. Each student researched a different topic of interest and used their research to write a script for their commercial. Students then filmed a 10 to 60 second film clip using a classroom flip-cam or a device of their own. They then connected the device to a computer and loaded their video clips into iMovie or used the app on their device. I gave a 40 min lesson on using the tools in iMovie, then let the students explore. They worked individually and as groups. they critiqued each others works and developed their editing skills using the critiques. They shared skills and gave mini-lesson on what they learned. Many students used special effects including green screens. The students that finished their projects earlier became teachers and assistants to those less skilled or still working. They shared their "Movies" and students had the option of playing their PSA Commercials for the school over our closed-broadcast announcements. This extended project took 6-45 minute class sessions to complete from start to finish.
My Take
My overall opinion of this product is that it is an excellent tool to use to create a high-interest environment for students in middle school for any subject. Students who didn't want to be on camera found creative ways to add effects or film while still making sure the information was accurate well written. Since it was on camera, it held them accountable and I believe it made them keep a higher standard of work. It helps when doing a project like this to have at least one whole class lesson as iMovie is not completely intuitive. While there are many editing apps available out there, iMovie is reliable and their help text is extensive and complete. Students who don't have apple products quickly adapt and it is a great way for students to explore and feel creative.