Are you a “Bus Safety Expert”?

Recently, my school district contacted my principal and inquired about my 4-5 blended technology class and 2-3 blended technology class completing a project. The project entailed students studying and teaching other students across our district about “bus safety procedures and expectations”. The students were excited to accept this challenge and teach others.

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To start this task, my teaching partner and I invited my principal and transportation director to our classroom to explain to the students what they envision and give “the charge” for their work. A video was shared, questions were answered, and students began brainstorming ideas for their project. Once we knew the expectations, we were able to break students up into groups to allow them a focus for their video segment.

Students met daily for two weeks to study the expectations, engage in discourse on how to teach others via video, write script, practice and memorize script, and then practice their “play” to perfection. During the perfection phase, students presented their “play” to their peers and accepted constructive comments to revise and move their work towards a finished presentation. The students did a great job during each of these phases, taking very seriously their task at hand.

Once the work was ready for recording, a bus was delivered for our usage. It did take us a week to record all videos. As a result of our prior video work, I had one of my students provide a second camera for capturing video.

Besides the iPhone, below are some of the video resources used for our project.

 

The tripod was an important tool to steady the camera during recording.  It is very easy to move to  set up and other places.

This camera worked out well!  The microphone was a huge plus in order to hear the students speak . . . especially the quieter students.   I didn’t need to use the remote for this video; however, I do like that one comes with it just in case I need one.

 

Once all the video recording was done, I found it easy to use iMovie on my desktop computer to splice, edit, and add bells and whistles to the videos.

Once the video work was completed, I utilized iMovie to upload the two sets of videos, splice the videos together, edit frames, and add bells and whistles to make the video even more dynamic. Although my intent was for the students to engage in the video editing, I ended up working on this simply because of the amount of time I had available with students and the looming deadline. Even though students didn’t get a chance to engage in video editing, when we had a video premier, students did offer editing suggestions, which I completed to prepare for the final project.

 

One of my students designed this 3D bus and printed this on our 3D printer for our project.

Check out the informational video these amazing students planned and completed each step from beginning to end. View the video here: Bus Safety Expectations.

This project was a great opportunity for students to engage in community service learning, take each process step to fruition, collaborate, be creative, communicate knowledge, and critically think about the overall project and each step along the way to meet the task goals.

Check out another video event where my principal asked my students to teach the rest of our learning community about our school’s expectations, Cool With School Rules!  It was a result of these videos that inspired my district transportation department to inquire about doing this bus safety video.

I love how these students embraced this learning opportunity and raised their own learning bar to meet the district’s expectations!  This is the TRUE BEAUTY of Project Based Learning!

 

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Annette Durbin

Annette has been an educator for 29 years working in the PK-6 elementary classroom, English learner instructional specialist, district leadership, university professor, as well as a mentor for teachers nationwide. A National Board Certificated Teacher, Annette focuses her research on accelerating learning and advancing achievement, personalizing instruction, technology, and leadership in the education field.

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