Category Archives: Technology Tutorials

Timeline: Filming an advertisement for your club or activity

I’m excited that there is so much interest in Shawnee TV and opportunities for production experiences.

We have a camera at almost every event that happens throughout the year, and try to accommodate all requests.

I have a few suggestions for making a successful video production for your club or activity:

Executive summary: Estimate at least 5 total hours of work involved for any project involving a script and a group of students with no video experience. If I am available for all steps of the production, it might help speed things up a bit.

  • 1 hour on script (could include re-writes, approval, discussion and planning…)
  • 2 hours on filming (could include meeting set-up, getting organized, performance and re-shooting…)
  • 2 hours on editing and finishing (could include file transfer time, editing, graphics, processing…)

-Please give at least 2 weeks lead time prior to the video needing to be aired. For more complex longer productions, or bigger groups of students needed for the production, allow more time.

-Start with a script (with a deadline) as a goal for your students. This typically takes a few hours, depending on the writing ability of the group. Please advise your students on the script or idea. If you need help or suggestions feel free to email me.

-Once the script is approved by you, please email me the script. I can help you figure out how it will be filmed/produced.

-Depending on complexity, filming can take a few hours. It requires someone knowing how to use the camera and microphones. Sometimes we have students who do not need instruction or help setting up the equipment available, most times it requires my assistance. It also requires someone who can lead/direct the group. More people involved with the production = more time needed for direction, preparation and practice. Supervision is the best way to be sure what is filmed is acceptable. If not, it may require a re-shoot.

-Depending on complexity, editing can take a few hours. It requires someone knowing how to use the editing software and hardware. Sometimes we have students who do not need instruction or help setting up the equipment available, most times it requires my assistance.

-Please understand that we follow strict copyright law and do not air anything with copyright on our Friday show because we publish every show on our website and submit our shows for awards. Any segment for a Friday show must have completely original content, follow creative commons attribution, or have a signed copyright release form.

Shawnee TV enjoys working with everyone, producing great media, and experiential learning. Let us know if we can help you!

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Case Study: Google Calendar

In the spirit of learning from experience, lets look into classrooms for officially tested tried and true technology.  Mike Casey sets up effective (and easy to use) Google Calendars (with cell phone and other mobile device access and reminders!) for individual studies teachers, sports teams, clubs and other planning requirements.  He put together an awesome presentation on his website:

https://sites.google.com/site/shawneeenglish/google-calendar

If you have been using technology that helps in the classroom, please share your story.

NPR: Physicists Seek To Lose The Lecture As Teaching Tool

The buzz words are out there: flipped classroom, guide on the side vs. sage on the stage, or as Ian Jukes calls it, “full frontal”.

On January 12th,  NPR’sAll Things Considered” aired a story on education titled Physicists Seek To Lose The Lecture As Teaching Tool.

The story quotes analytic proof where lecture produced worse results than small group collaboration, where the groups had simply read the material to be discussed PRIOR to the discussion.

Making sense of the information with a small group of peers in class seems to be where the real learning takes place.  The transfer of information can be done by reading or doing a simple Google search.

The physics professors used polleverywhere to ask a question at the beginning of a class after students had read the material.  The question had 3 multiple choice answers.  The results were shared with the class, then a small group discussion took place.  The poll was taken a second time and the results always improved.

I’d like to test this concept at our meeting.  Familiarize yourself with the following  prior to the meeting:

“I understand how to use an iPod (or cell phones) with WIFI, Safari and polleverywhere.com to conduct a live poll in class.”

We’ll take the first poll (baseline data) at the meeting, discuss in small groups with ipods, then take a second poll.  We should quickly see improvement.

Maybe this concept and the technology used can be implemented in our classes.

If you are using polleverywhere or have experience with flipping your classroom, please leave a comment below on your experience.

HD Video Files: Log and Transfer Preferences Explained

Tapeless HD camcorders record a specific video file to a card or a drive connected to the the camera.  This file is encoded with a specific video compression/codec.

In Final Cut Pro “Log and transfer” will transcode the format (AVCHD most likely) you shot to the card or drive to Apple ProRes 422. The quicktime mov files will be stored wherever you set the scratch disk in FCP menu, system settings.

The Apple ProRes 422 codec provides the following:

Target data rate of approximately 145 Mbps (1920 x 1080 at 60i)

See here:
finalcutpro/professionalformatsandworkflows/index.html

You can select many different options in the import preferences.  The preset is Apple ProRes 422.  There is a higher preset (HQ) with a higher data rate, but you would use higher settings only if you have a camera  that records with higher color sampling and more resolution.  I never change the preset.

Click the sprocket in the log and transfer window to see the different preferences.

Once the mov is transcoded it will be in the browser, then drag it to the timeline.

FCP installs with a preference that will make any new sequence NTSC DV (standard definition video).  There is another preference that will pop up when you drag an HD clip to the timeline asking you to change sequence settings to match clip settings.  If you click yes, you will be editing in the native format of the clip.  If you want the clip to be forced into a letterbox 4:3 sequence (scaled 50%) click no.  It all depends on what format you want to export.

For more about AVCHD:
http://www.avchd-info.org/format/index.html

For more about color sampling:
http://blog.abelcine.com/2011/06/09/hd-formats-color-model-color-sub-sampling/

FCP Log and Transfer Tutorial:

Social Bookmarking: Delicious

Social Bookmarking with Delicious allows you to save your bookmarks so they may be accessed from any web browser.  It also allows you to share all the great sites you bookmark with your friends and colleagues.

Although there were rumors the site would be closing, it was acquired by the founders of youtube and will be a long term place to store your bookmarks.

Here is a tutorial on how to create an account and the steps to find directions for transferring your already saved bookmarks:

How to: Simply copy a link to a specific time in a youtube video.

Just right-click on the video and select “Copy video URL at current time”. It’s probably a good idea to pause the video before using this feature.

Thanks to Alex Chitu for posting this article.