My oldest son is not one to read but he is very visual. He learns best through videos, creating, drawing and even making little videos on my phone and computer now and then. Needless to say when I saw that there was a chance to review Online Christian Filmmakers Academy from Family Gravity Media, a division of Families For Christ Ministries, Inc., I figured this could be an excellent way to really encourage him in this area. Perhaps I could use this to inspire my little filmmaker in an educational way. 🙂
This is amazing! It’s an online film academy taught by Ken and Zack Lawrence (father-son team) that have produced a number of films including In His Steps, The Pastor’s House, and lots more! Ken is a certified Career and Technical Education instructor in Audio/Video & Film. Zack has worked as a producer, director, actor, and on film crews. He also wrote, produced and directed the feature film In His Steps based on the Christian classic by Charles Sheldon, and he produced the web series Indy Christian Review, which ran for 100 episodes. These guys are just the right ones to be teaching this course! Talk about knowing your material. 🙂
There are five sections to this course (which includes tests, pdf downloads, and more!)
- The Camera
Each module contains about 5 lessons (module 2, has 15 lessons) and there are quizzes throughout.
These guys are great instructors! The videos are short enough to keep my son’s attention but not at all lacking in detail. My son likes how he can comment as he watches the videos. Although he is only now starting to as he watches the whole thing from the beginning again. Within every video they teach not just what you need, but they also offer lots of great suggestions for how to manage without certain things. For example, a PVC Shoulder Rig. Never heard of this before. My son says, we need one. We aren’t going to run out and buy one of those….The Burns’ offer an alternative for this. So they have some great tips as you go along to ensure that you really can do this course, completely, without spending an arm and a leg on equipment!
I love how they encourage throughout the class, for our kids to get in there and give this a try. Again and again our kids are reminded: Don’t just watch the videos, but try it for yourself. Learn and then do.
My son is eleven years old and I can never find my cell phone because he loves making videos! And he uses it quite often actually to make videos and take photos. We have been considering getting him a video camera of his own in the near future since he really is enjoying making videos of magic tricks and foreign language learning and Bible stuff too. It’s fun to see him working with his brother and sister now and then too (his little sister is always willing to be his assistant) as they do all kinds of crazy and creative stuff together!
He is currently shopping online in the hopes that he will get a nice new video camera in the near future. He is also watching this course again, from the very beginning much more closely this time around. I love that this sparks such an interest in him; it speaks volumes to me that he chose to go back through this course again on his own.
Another great thing about this course is that they are constantly adding new content and updating the videos. So they are really up to date on all the latest and greatest when it comes to this stuff! (not so good for my tech loving boys perhaps ha-ha)
Most of the videos are about 5 – 10 minutes in length, which is great for all of my kids; even my littler ones enjoyed watching these now and then with their big brother. Additionally this makes for a great learning experience for our kids. There isn’t too much information and the little they are given is done in such a way that they are able to understand and then replicate it on their own. What a great way to learn!
While this course is $299 for a year’s access, for a limited time, they will take $100 off of the price when you use the code FALL2016. And when you do buy this course, you can use it for ALL of your kids (we have four ourselves), so if all of your kids want to do this course, they can all do it. Isn’t that a blessing? I know my younger son (7) really wants to complete this himself!
Honestly I am usually very much against movies and technology when it comes to my kids. Having been raised without any of this stuff, I see so much opportunity for our kids to really grow and learn away from screens. But this, for my reluctant older son who thinks “school stinks” right now, this is such a powerful tool. I am seeing him learn so much more because he is excited to learn and study and then make a show for others to see. My oldest son has made videos of him doing and teaching magic tricks; he loves to share all kinds of Bible stuff, even language learning (he loves foreign languages) and he is hoping to use this to help teach others how to play drums in the near future too. What a great way to inspire and encourage our kids to have a love of learning!
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Online Christian Filmmakers Academy via Facebook.