Washington Evening Journal
http://washington-ia.villagesoup.com/p/1144211

Neighbors Growing Together | Jul 31, 2014

Delivering weekly update

By Xiomara Levsen | Mar 20, 2014
Pictured above are the eighth-grade students from Highland Middle School who are participating in the Middle School Weekly Update. Their teacher, Stephanie McGirt, is on the far right hand side. She told her students a month ago she did weekly updates at the school she previously taught at. McGirt asked if they wanted to do something like this at Highland Middle School, to which the answer was yes.

RIVERSIDE—Lights, camera, and action is now something 20 or so Highland Middle School students say to one another each week.
Stephanie McGirt, eighth-grade English and language arts teacher at Highland Middle School, said she brought the idea to her study hall students a month ago.
“I said at my old school we did it [made video weekly updates],” McGirt said, “and then they said, ‘We should do it.’ ”
“Nathan [Butler] and I were the first people in line to be the anchors, so we automatically got it,” said Bailey Harmston.
Some of the topics the students cover include sports, school news, highlights from different school activities, Talk to Thomas, word of the week, and other topics, the class said.
Every Monday the class gets together and discusses the topics they’d like to feature during that week, McGirt said.
“On Mondays we talk about what went well the previous week and what didn’t,” McGirt said, “and then we talk about what video can be done during the next week. Some of them [the students] do it during STAT class and some come in during seventh-grade study hall. We try to get it done during the day.”
By Friday the students have all of their video work done. The class uses Microsoft Movie Maker to put the Highland Middle School Weekly Update together.
Then, it’s uploaded to the Highland Middle School Web site, McGirt said.
A green screen has been purchased for the weekly update, which the students will most likely start using next week, McGirt said.

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