Almost all the students really enjoyed this project. Each student was able to create their very own movie, and they were proud of their work. At first, during the research phase, some students were not able to see the big picture and complained that it was just another research project. However, after the pictures were placed in the movie and the voice-over was dubbed in, they could see a real product falling into place. Several of the students repeated their voice-over several times to get it just perfect. They would go into the studio just to redo a single sentence. Students spent hours perfecting the effects to make the movie stand out in a sea of similar films. The amount of creativity from the students was impressive. This project gave all the students the opportunity to exercise creativity, experience success, and take pride in a tangible product.
If we were to do this project again, we would adjust the requirements somewhat. The amount of history the students learned during this project was extraordinary, and it showed in the movies. However, the physics was a lot more difficult to demonstrate in the movie. Some of the students that had a firm grasp of Macromedia Flash were able to create pictures that could help explain their physics concepts. The students that did not have that knowledge were less successful in explaining the physics concepts well. Finding pictures to represent the concepts was much more difficult than finding pictures to help the viewer understand the history. In the future, we would incorporate lessons on how to create images in Flash or Photoshop before students began making their storyboard so that they would be aware of what they are capable of before creating the story. The videos with some original Flash or Photoshop were more successful than the ones without.
The goals for students varied depending on the student's needs. Every student was expected to complete a documentary to the specifications described above. Advanced students were encouraged to take on a physics topic of which they had no previous knowledge. All students were encouraged and expected to do in-depth research into the physics of their device or discovery.