With the kids now permanently at home, it is always a challenge to keep them entertained. Often drawn to their screens, getting them to do something different can be tricky. But why not encourage them to make their own videos?
Making their own short films not only keeps them occupied in a way that engages them, but it is a strong form of self-expression, which has been shown to ease stress and anxiety, as well as boredom.
Creativity is really great way to increase confidence and self-esteem, especially when they get to share their videos with family and friends.
The key to this is to really let them loose to do things their own way. By all means discuss their ideas if they want to and help them with the camera or computer if they need it, otherwise sit back until show time!
Use any device
They can use anything to film with, a camera, a phone, iPad or tablet, it doesn’t matter the quality, what matters they are doing something they enjoy. And if they don’t have anything to film with, they can use photos and set them to music or record a voice over. Both PCs and Mac sometimes come with a free video editor. PCs sometimes have Windows Movie Maker, and Macs and iPads have iMovie. If your PC doesn’t have Movie Maker, you can download GoPro Studio or VideoPad
Add some music and pictures
All are very easy to use, allow you to add music (for royalty-free music which can use on the internet go to Purple Planet or Free Music Archive), put in your own titles, import photos and video, and add a voice over. If your children don’t have their own photos, you can download some photos for free from a site like Pixabay, Pexels or Unsplash. (These have creative commons licensed images so can be used freely on the internet, but check the individual license for each image).
Choose a subject
If they don’t know where to start, ask them what they are interested in, what do they like about Pokémon, sport or ponies? How would they explain it to an alien or someone who has never seen it before? What are the best things about their favourite thing? What would they do if they were a toy designer or zookeeper? How would they make the world a better place?
Sit back and enjoy the movie
Sharing their interests in this way not only builds their confidence, but you might find out something new about your child that you never knew before! And sharing their video with family and friends gives children a real sense of community and connection. Not only this, they are learning about digital technologies, planning and organisation, their teachers would be proud!