Helping make our point with Video: Lesson Plan

Overview: Making our point with video

As a class, we are going to create a “video illustration” to go with our persuasive essay to the Department of Education. A video illustration is a short video that adds sounds and pictures to help communicate what is in our writing — like the video we made for the Math Workshop blog post.

The purpose of our video illustration will be to help us convince the Department of Education to stop the ban on certain parts of the Internet.

So far you have provided strong reasons, examples and facts in your persuasive essay. Now we want to choose what images and sounds can help us communicate those points in another way.

Overview: Planning our video

The first thing we do when making a video is plan what we want it to look like. We are going to do this by writing a description of what our video illustration should show our audience.

As a class, we will plan an idea for a video in 3 sentences and post it to the blog. You will then write out how we can show that idea using video and narration in your writer’s notebooks. Then you will post those ideas on the Internet as comments to our blog post.

When your ideas are all on the blog, we will look at them as a class and decide what idea we will use and how it will look. Then we’ll make the video!


Shared work

1. Review the Math Workshop Video

To get started, we will look at the Math Workshop blog post. Mr. Rhys wanted to show how Ms. Abodeely’s Math Workshop works. Here are 3 sentences that describe the idea that we illustrated in the first part of that video:

Sentence 1: Ms. Abodeely discusses strategies for solving number stories with her class.
Sentence 2: Ms. Abodeely first explains the strategies.
Sentence 3: Students share what strategies they will use.

Our video illustration will be 3 shots long. Each time we set up the video camera and record a few seconds of an activity then turn it off, we have recorded 1 “shot”.

Let’s look at the Math Workshop video as a class and write down the shots that Mr. Rhys used to communicate this idea to the audience, and what narration we recorded to help explain them.

2. Review a sample plan for a video illustration for our persuasive essay

Now, let’s look at an example of a plan for a video illustrating a part of your persuasive essay.

The following is an example of a plan for a video that supports the sentence in your essay that says, “It would keep us from getting to good websites.”

THE IDEA (3 sentences):

Sentence 1: Ms. Abodeely decides to find some a photo and supporting information from the internet about the African monkey that bit her in the leg to share with her class.

Sentence 2: She sets up the projector during her prep period and searches on Google for the perfect info and finds a description of a great site!

Sentence 3: When she clicks on the link all she sees is the “Access Denied” message, and she throws up her hands and screams!


Shot 1
What we see: A wide shot of the classroom with Ms. Abodeely in front setting up the projector.

What we hear: A narrator says, “Ms. Abodeely wanted to use the Internet to help teach her students about the type of Monkey that bit her in Africa.”
Shot 2
What we see: A mid shot of Ms. Abodeely searching Google. The screen will show with a summary of info on Monkeys. Ms. Abodeely will smile and click the link with her mouse, and the screen will show the “Access Denied” message.

What we hear: Narrator says, “She thought she found a perfect website by searching Google…”
Shot 3
What we see: A close up of the screen that says “Access Denied”

What we hear: Ms. Abodeely screaming, and the narrator says, “But, sadly, that website was blocked by the Department of Education because it has the forbidden word ‘game’ on it. Her prep time has been wasted, and now she has nothing to share with her kids except the scar on her leg…”

Guided practice

As a shared writing activity we will write a 3 sentence description of our video illustration. We will make a blog post using a laptop and projector that shows:

1.) the section of our persuasive essay that we are illustrating with video, and

2.) our 3 sentence description of our idea for what to show on the video screen.

Once we have posted our final 3 sentences, students will copy them down in their writer’s notebooks.

We will write the idea for the first of the 3 shots together as a class. We will enter the idea for the first shot as a “comment” to the blog post we create together.

Independent practice

In their writer’s notebooks, students will work write their own ideas for the remaining 2 video shots that will illustrate our 3 sentences with images and sound.

Once they have their shots planned and ready to share, they will enter them onto the blog as “comments” to the blog post containing the 3 sentence description of what we are illustrating, just like we did with shot 1.

Video Production

Once all of the student ideas are posted to the blog we will review them as a class, storyboard the final illustration, film it in class and add it to the computer, record our narration, and post it to the blog along with our persuasive essay.


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