L&M students learn media and life skills

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Barbara Noble is Louisa-Muscatine High School’s Art, Graphics, and Media Production teacher. She teaches Media Productions, but most refer to it as Falcon Daily News or FDN.  Noble explained, “Our class purpose is to be a positive communication tool for our students, staff, and school community.  Students are responsible for creating an entertaining and informational ‘show’ weekly.”

Each student has different responsibilities and segments they are responsible for each week. Many of their segments are common to any news outlet, such as weather, sports, world news, or technology, while others are less common, such as “Meme of the Month” or “Dumb Stuff.” Other segments include “On a Different Note,” which features pop culture music as well as music groups within the school, “Places to Visit”, “How-To”, “Video Games,” and “Spotlight,” which features a student of the week.

The students work together each semester to build the class around their interests. “Each semester a new team of students decides on format for their episodes, components that will be included, the frequency of episodes, etc. The students are responsible for organizing, filming, editing, and publishing the episodes,” said Noble.

One student joined the class as a creative outlet. “I’ve always liked video editing and to be able to do that in school is awesome,” said junior Riley Korthaus. Another student joined to get out of a different class. “I was in a math class that was too hard, so I joined this class and now I love it. It makes me want to go to school,” said senior Abby Magana.

All of the students feel they have learned valuable skills from this class. Senior Hunter Werner said, “Most of us walked in here with little to no experience with video editing, and some of us hardly have any experience with computers at all. But, this is going to sound cheesy, this is a self-discovery class. We are learning why we make what we make.”

Noble feels the class is more about learning to work together and sees that the eight students in her class, while from different social groups, have come together as friends. The students benefit from the class in many ways besides learning media production. Junior Riley Skidmore said she’s benefited from the class because she’s a lot more involved in the school and more aware of school activities. Junior Amy Magana said, “In this class we have to learn how to manage our time or else we won’t get our episodes in. It makes me more organized.”

The class teaches more than just video editing. Noble said, “It is about personal responsibility, having permission to be creative, having an idea and developing it, solving problems and answering questions, understanding the importance of communicating effectively, and working together as a team. They have the ideas. They drive the class. I’m just here to make sure they stay on the road.”