Lights, Camera, Nature is a nature film making class for children ages 7-12. The spring session students will connect with a unique coastal setting in Gloucester. They will choose a favorite beach, marsh, or rocky shore on which to set their movies. The class combines authentic immersion in the natural world with technology and storytelling skills. Students have the opportunity to connect deeply with a place, and to produce a creative piece that will give a sense of accomplishment and be shared with the general public. The final products will document the unique nature of this area and will be screened at various venues to generate understanding and enthusiasm for local natural resources. Lights, Camera, Nature is a partnership between Jessica Kagle, a professional naturalist and the Founder and Director of Kestrel Educational Adventures, and Robert Newton, a film specialist and Founder and Director of Cape Ann Community Cinema (CACC). We alternate between venturing into the local wilds to capture natural drama on our cameras, and working at CACC editing our movies. Student movies will be debuted on the big screen at the CACC for a public audience, and will be screened at other venues throughout Gloucester later in the year. The films made by students throughout several seasons will be compiled into a collection highlighting the stories of natural places throughout Eastern Essex County. Jessica and Rob provide instruction in nature awareness, ecology, camera use, storytelling, and video editing. We also provide mentoring in leadership skills and confidence, emerging from the process of the students working collaboratively to put together awesome films. Each class period allows substantial time for wandering, playing, and pure being. The pilot run of this class is almost finished, with footage and stories completed and edits ready to happen. Students' movies will premier at CACC Dec 9th. The linked website shows pics and stories from each class meeting.
Funded by Gloucester, MA (December 2013)