SignMedia is an innovative online learning resource that teaches elements of broadcast media industry-specific English through Sign Language video and interactive tasks, created by the international SignMedia project led by the University of Wolverhampton (UK). The video narrative and gameplay immerses learners into an alternative reality where learners start to work for the fictional Deaf production company Sunrise Media Productions as the production manager for the soap opera ‘Beautiful Days’.
And the oscar goes to...
Winner of the MEDEA Award for User-Generated Educational Media 2012
This entry is an e-Twinning project created in 2012 by Petros Michailidis of 5th Primary school of Alexandroupolis in Greece together with Christelle Vouillot from Ecole Primaire de Rolampont in France.
In this project 8-9 year old pupils from the 3rd grade in France worked together with 11-12 year pupils from the 6th grade in Greece to create short videos on topics such as traditional food and customs, but also bullying and hooliganism.
Through the video production and storytelling they learned to express themselves in a new way (compared to writing and speaking as traditional classroom activities) and were made aware of international collaboration. Their activities involved various subjects such as informatics, English, literature, and visual art skills as the students collaboratively wrote a story (language skills) and created a scenario (calculating the frames using maths). They learned how to use a camera to shoot their video and how to create sound effects or a soundtrack. Through different software and tools they could edit the video, incorporate subtitles and even convert one of their movies to 3D.
The many short videoclips on the website highlight different directorial and pedagogical aspects e.g. short shots for feelings or expressions, medium shots to study backgrounds, long shots for wide scenes.
What the judges said
The judges agreed that this is a “very, very comprehensive site that walks the user through a learning journey from start to conclusion. All learning objectives are very clearly described. The learning process is cut in clearly defined stages and for each stage the objectives, the activities, the tools used and the expected outcomes are well described. Perfect use of media!”
About the creation of And the oscar goes to …
Petros Michailidis (5th Primary school of Alexandroupolis, Greece) on the background of this entry: “We chose to create videos because it is the most suitable means to broaden the teaching method and can also stimulate children to be involved and active in accomplishing their class subjects’ scenarios. And through working with the other school in another country on the videos, they learned to work together and used ICT tools in their work. It can be used in so many subjects, for instance our social studies they learnt about the importance of security on the internet, about personal rights, the power of media to affect other people's opinion, and the pupils learnt to use software to blur their own and their classmates’ faces.
The most important aspect of this project is that not only teachers but mainly pupils of totally different ages (3rd grade in France and 6th grade in Greece) managed to work together and create a collaborative movie while learning places, school subjects and everyday school life of the partner school’s students. The high point of this collaboration is not only the successful oral communication through Skype in a third language (English) but also the created emotional bond between pupils of different ages and in different countries.”
About Petros Michailidis
Petros Michailidis has been a primary school teacher for almost 18 years. He likes to use innovative teaching approaches in his ordinary school practice so as to motivate his students. He considers the use of media in school as a way for students to develop critical thinking, self-respect, collaborative and innovative spirit. He likes to work with schools from abroad in common projects and help his students to broaden their horizons. The last couple of years he worked on two eTwinning projects the first of which was awarded in the 6th eTwinning national contest with the first prize.
Petros represented this entry at the MEDEA Awards 2012 Ceremony and talked about it in further detail during a presentation at the Media & Learning Conference 2012 Brussels. During the MEDEA Awards Ceremony, that took place during this conference, And the Oscar goes to ... was announced the Winner of the MEDEA Award for User-Generated Educational Media 2012 and received a MEDEA Statuette as well as an Acer Tablet, a Promethean Learner Response Tool, and a Camtasia & Snagit software bundle.