Post Modern Multimedia Research Project

Sep 8, 2015
Post Modern Wall

Will you: 

This is a fun project that allows you to combine many different viewpoints in one multimedia research project. Some students were frightened by the idea of making a movie, but I didn’t offer much in the way of instruction on Movie Maker while we experimented in my class. I just demonstrated how I was building my sample right along with the students, and we figured it out as we went. Within days, many of the students knew more about movie maker than me. Check out the movies they produced related to The Things They Carried on the mission page.

Post Modernism has many different guises, but one aspect of the literary movement that most agree on is the belief that combining the opinions of many people, including particularly the perspective of the common man, can portray reality more truthfully and powerfully than any single professional or elite viewpoint.

The focus in this mission is to get you looking at, and representing, many different perspectives in your research. Students will take information from different sources and use it for a new purpose. Since it is highly unlikely that the original sources they glean their information from were written with the purpose of comparing with themes from the book you are reading, students must rework the information in order to use it successfully in their task.

This kind of reworking, known as ‘decontextualizing’ and then ‘recontextualizing’ information, requires thinking at a very high level. Students must first select appropriate information from the original contexts and then organize and connect it in ways which are suitable for the new purpose(s) they want to achieve. In this mission, the research will be recontextualized in the form of a multilayered short movie presentation combining many different points of view.

Start your project by looking at the Twenty Questions Mission.

Once you have decided on the question you want to research, it is important to make some connections to the book we are reading in class—my class was reading Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried, but any novel will work for this. Widen your view to consider not just your specific question, but also the keywords you choose to represent the real focus of your research question. How are those keywords represented in the book we are reading? Find a few pertinent passages from the book, read them aloud, and record using either Audacity or Garage Band. Export as .mp3 or .wav files.

Download a few movie clips related to your research question from Youtube. Also find some related songs or music videos to use as background music and download from Youtube as an mp3 or as a video if you want some clips to include.

Start working in Movie Maker or iMovie with the clips, music, and recordings of passages from the book to create your presentation. Once you start putting your presentation together, be ready to go back to the book to look for passages relevant to the different places your research leads you.

Now, widen your search by looking for interviews on Youtube with famous people, authors, or educators speaking about your research topic. Download and integrate clips into your movie.

Use captions to visually point out what your thoughts are about the different elements you include in the presentation. You may also quote from related articles using captions.

Layering audio is the most complex step; if you want to have background music with your voice over it, you have to put in one layer of audio, publish, and then put in another layer. It really just requires practice to get the hang of.

The final step is to answer all of the reflection questions and to record your thoughts on how your view or perspective has changed through the process of building your presentation. Incorporate this into your presentation.