After participating in the Let’s Make Movies camp, as researchers we recognized that we could import the five-day camp structure into an undergraduate writing methods course. Through this project, the pre-service teachers expand their concepts of composition to include the use of the multiple semiotic systems involved in film production. In addition, this project involves the systematic introduction of curriculum and its effect on the eventual production of media-literacy projects. In other words, the kids are held accountable for specific knowledge (disciplinary) and its representation in their products. Similarly, undergraduate students are held accountable for specific knowledge (composition process and instructional methods) in the process and product.
One of the instructors at the school, Allison Papke, was instrumental in coordinating the project. Allison is also a veteran counselor at the Let’s Make Movies (LMM) summer camp and the Going Green project used many of the instructional materials and techniques developed for the LMM camps.
Using a formative experiment design, Jenifer Schneider has led the CLC team in the examination of the elements of a new media literacies field-experience offered as an instructional modification within successive iterations of one elementary writing methods course. We analyzed the instructional contexts to determine the factors that support or constrain pre-service teacher instructional skill development and elementary student literacy production when they work together to create multimodal texts. Each project was designed in consultation with classroom teachers and intended to meet the needs of the students in connection to disciplinary and literacy goals.