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24 September 2014

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Teachers' Notes - Editing

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To accompany the website, ICT Advanced Skills Teacher Paul Sibson has written a set of Teacher's Notes.

This section suggests ways to tackle editing a 60 Second Shakespeare in the classroom.

Keep it simple!
Most editing software will allow students to employ very fancy transitions and special effects. The temptation is to cram the movie with a different effect every few seconds just because you can.

Let the students play around with the different effects first so that they get the oohs and ahs out of the way. Then, when they are editing for real they can focus on actually telling their stories.

Too many effects and cuts can ruin a movie or audio and distract from the story that you are trying to tell. Less is more.
Keep an eye on the clock

Be aware that editing can easily become a very time consuming job if you let it. Even editing down a minute's worth of video can take hours if you have a student who likes perfection. The following guidelines will help you avoid this.

  • Set the students time limits so that they don't spend hours on tiny details.
  • Organisation early on, such as keeping a list of good takes or shots, really pays dividends at this point.
  • Encourage the students to initially spend time choosing the sections of footage that they want to use before putting anything on the timeline, rather than putting it all on and having to spend hours cutting huge amounts of footage down to 60 seconds.
  • Having all your clips and sound effects ready before you start assembling your final work saves time later on. It allows you to spend your editing time trimming and moving clips to fit into 60 seconds, rather than cutting.
  • When in doubt, cut it out. The art of good editing is getting rid of stuff. Hard though it may be for the students to part with their lovingly shot or recorded scenes, it'll improve the finished product if they do.

  • Remember to include rendering time in your planning.

    It takes time for computers to export finished movies into a format which can be sent to the BBC. Depending on the speed of the computer this process can take a few minutes or a few hours.

    Keep this in mind in your planning otherwise you may find yourself sitting around on a Friday night waiting for movies to render long after all the students have gone home.

    Adding credits to your edited movie

    One of the tools found in most video editing software packages is the title making tool. It can produce very flash looking titles and credits, which can introduce and round off your movies.

    Given the time constraints of 60 second Shakespeare it is a good idea to run titles or credits over the top of video footage rather than a black screen.

    Ask the students to think carefully about whether they want to have credits (their names and details of the movie will be included on the website) or not.

    If they decide they do want credits they should place them carefully in the movie. It would be a shame to spoil the movies denouement with credits rolling over the lead actor's fine acting!!


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