This is why kids are cool …

Last weekend our 11 year old son, Keenan, asked if he could go to his mate’s house. They had been scripting a video together at lunchtime and they wanted to film it. We were fine with that (actually stoked would be a better word!), so on Sunday he spent four hours at his mate’s house.

He came home in the afternoon and begged to use my Mac. He wanted to edit his movie so he could upload it to YouTube. I was writing, so he had to use his dad’s Mac – but first he had to go beach fishing, with his dad of course. At 8pm on Sunday he sat down at the computer and started asking me questions. Good questions: How do I import the video from the SD card? How do I import my chosen video into iMovie? How do I shorten each video file? After a quick 5 minute tutorial he was off on his own. He did some stuff without asking too, like adding titles, which I imagine he did via trial and error.  After 40 minutes he had a completed video – including hilarious credits! With a bit of help from Lee, he exported the movie and uploaded it to his own YouTube channel. Then he got on the phone to his mate to tell him to go watch it – oh, he emailed the link to the email address of his mate’s mum too!

The next morning when I dropped him off to school we heard his name being called out by a woman. It was his mate’s mum. She was so stoked with the video and laughed about how she’d asked if she could bring the washing in but they said it was part of their props, lol.

This is the perfect example of a passion-driven project. It didn’t take weeks to do, it took a few days. The boys did their brainstorming and planning at school (EXPLORE), their filming and editing together at home (CREATE) and shared it online and with their mates (PRESENT). Projects are everywhere and they can be so awesome.

How can we make sure that the projects we do at school are just as fun, inspiring and cool as this one?



8 thoughts on “This is why kids are cool …

  1. Passion driven learning is so important for student engagement. I think as educators we need to make the curriculum work for us instead of feeling like we are governed by it. If students were able to use their passions to drive learning in the classroom it would require a huge mind shift away from the one size fits all paradigm that exists in education today. My vision of the passion driven classroom would be one where students are directing their own learning, demonstrating their learning in different ways and the teacher would be tweaking the learning so that syllabus outcomes and standards (and most importantly skills) would be achieved along the way. Organised chaos.

    • Totally agree. I think Genius Hour goes some what towards making this a reality, as does Punk Learning. I’m going to be looking into both as a means to enhance project-learning. Thanks so much for your comment!

      • Genius Hour and Punk Learning…I’ll have to keep an ear out for ideas around those!

  2. Pingback: Week 5 Reflection: Inspiring Children | Jenny Welker

  3. This video is epically cool 🙂
    I think we can capture this kind of spirit by allowing students more choice in what they learn, and you are right – passion projects are perfect for that.

    Hey, if Keenan and his mate haven’t seen the YouTube series ‘Ask a Ninja’ before, here is a link to pass it on to them…I think it is right down their alley!

  4. Pingback: Week 7 Reflection: This is why kids are cool …

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