Once I finished watching, I wanted to know more about this teacher.
Meet Mr. Avina!
Q: How long have you been teaching?
A: I have been teaching for 10 years, 9 years in kindergarten and one in 6th grade.
Q: How long did this project take?
A: The project took about 2 months. At the beginning of January, I began searching through my iTunes songs to find music that I loved and would best fit the story. Once I decided on the songs, I edited them with GarageBand to make them kinder-friendly. When I returned from break, I threw the Good Morning song out the window and replaced it with Madonna & Garbage. At the end of January, we began filming. By the end of February, the kids had learned the songs well enough to have their vocals recorded on my iPhone. The last scenes were shot at the beginning of March.
I was so CERTAIN that he spends his weekends with the film industry in California so…
Q: You appear to have some film experience… Can you tell us more about that?
A: I do not have film experience. I LOVE drama and the performing arts and I have been directing plays for 10 years, but this was my first venture into film. It was very much a trial-and-error process (fun and frustrating), and I ran it by friends for constant feedback as I was editing.
Q: How did you go about filming this? Equipment? Editing software?
A: Some scenes were filmed with the whole group. Other scenes I filmed while the kids worked at their desks or were at their centers. The majority of the film was shot during recess and lunch. I pulled out small groups of kids and filmed it little by little (which is why it took so long to make). I used a Sony digital camera and a tripod.
I used GarageBand for the music and iMovie to edit the film.
Q: If a teacher wanted to attempt a similar project, where would you suggest they start?
A: If a teacher wanted to do this, I would suggest reading the story for about a week and having different students act out different parts so that the teacher can have an idea about casting. Have a script ready, but be prepared to change it as the story evolves. Kids are creative, they will read beyond the text, and they will come up with their own lines and scenarios. Going with the flow is key.