Students and Technology -- Finding the right fit.

Every Friday some of my 5th grade students put together their own web-show for the school and the 1800+ subscribers we have on iTunes. (Not 180 as Nikki says in the intro)

Although the above video looks fun and natural and you are amazed that it is completely 100% student-made, the truth is that it took us quite a few tries to get it right...

We started the year with wanting to do a Friday show. We tried it pre-recorded and the first episode was over 17 minutes long -- way too long for a school morning show. Plus we had to put in a lot of editing time.

Then we changed the format a little and still it didn't work.

We just kept trying week after week, looking for the right fit for us.

You see, as the adult and teacher, I had a vision of what I wanted the show to look like, even though the kids had no idea what it takes to make a great show. So we just kept trying.

Weeks went by with shows that were okay, but they still were not "it."

We were about six months into the school year when we finally moved things into our little studio (we were shooting in the huge media center) and we went live. Shooting the show live was the best move we made. It really forced the kids to practice and work hard to get it right the first time. Before we would just keep shooting a segment until we got it right -- like 10 takes to get the school lunch segment done. Now we just run with it.

My point is this: as the adults we need to have the vision of what a good quality digital product will look like, we then put together the necessary school technology, provide the training and then keep trying until you can get what works for you and you students. My students know that my bar is high, but I will give them whatever support is needed to help them get there. Never settle for just "okay" when it comes to students and digital products.