Flixtime & Shakespeare
The class: Mr. Gustafson's English Honors and AP
The goal: Analyze Shakespeare's sonnets in a creative way that will be longlasting, educational and interesting. Present projects to the class.
The project: In pairs, create a presentation and 2 videos analyzing the assigned sonnet. Each student is responsible for either the octave or sestet. Select music and images that will enhance the sonnet and bring it to life. Present your analyzation to the class.
The tools: Shakespeare's sonnets, Flixtime, PowerPoint We looked at a few options but ultimately settled on PowerPoint for the presentation piece and Flixtime for the video piece (some other options were Prezi and Animoto). We chose PowerPoint because all students were familiar with it and we chose Flixtime because of a few reasons:
- Students were able to make free 60 second video clips (as opposed to animoto 30 seconds)
- Ease of use
- A huge audio library with lyric free music.
Mr. G. and I met several times prior to the actual in class lesson, we emailed back and forth my examples and he created a rubric for the students. I settled on the somber sonnet 146 to create as an example. I chose music that flixtime included and found images online to create my two videos. These videos were what I used as a demonstration for the students. Mr. G gave me a somber sonnet to work on as an example. I must say I learned so much more about Shakespeare than I ever remember. I highly recommend completing a sample for any type of lesson that you assign that uses technology. It gives students an example of what a finish product looks like, it gets them excited about the project, it allows you to test tools and also to encounter some of the problems that students might have regarding bugs, time alottment, etc... If you are interested in completing a similar project, I can create the sample for you.
Sonnet 146, Octave
Sonnet 146, Sestet
Students were assigned sonnets by Mr. G. before I got to class. I went into the classroom and showed the students my example, explained to them the process, Mr. G. handed out the rubric, and we answered questions, we then moved into the lab. They were given one 90 minute block and then they had the rest for homework.
Below are the flixtime videos that two groups created. I did not include the PowerPoints with them. When the students presented the videos along with their analyzation, it was very powerful. They completely understood their sonnets and conveyed them passionately. They also got a lot out of listening to their peers present. (I'm sorry I can't embed these, I don't have access to the students' accounts, simply follow the links)
Kendra & Katie: Sonnet 18
The rubric Mr. G created:
0 or 1
Missing elements or poor selection of text font, music, images. Fewer than sixty seconds.
The text font, music, or images fail to convey the meaning of the sonnet.
Selection of text font, music, or images needs improvement. Sixty seconds.
The text font, music, or images do not connect clearly to the sonnet.
Good selection of text font, music, and images. Satisfactory. Sixty seconds.
The text font, music, and images are appropriate for the sonnet.
Outstanding selection of text font, music, and images. Creative. Sixty seconds.
The text font, music, and images significantly enhance the meaning of the sonnet.
0 or 1
Some omissions of information and/or inaccuracies. Evident need for more preparation.
Minimal, poorly done, or not completed. Type and slide design show little to no effort.
Satisfactory and accurate explanation of the sonnet. Could be more thorough or insightful.
Good use of PowerPoint type and slide design. Shows fair effort with limited creativity.
Thorough, accurate, and insightful explanation of the sonnet.
Excellent use of PowerPoint type and slide design. Shows outstanding effort with high creativity.
0 or 0.5
Reads from PowerPoint slides all the time. No eye contact. Presentation too brief, unclear, vague, limited, or poorly thought out.
Reads from PowerPoint slides quite a bit. Poor eye contact. Provides unclear, vague, or poorly thought out explanations.
Reads from PowerPoint slides at times. Could improve eye contact. Provides clear and basic explanations but lacks detail.
Does not need to look at PowerPoint slides. Excellent eye contact. Elaborates on ideas effectively, thoroughly, and insightfully.
Unacceptable or incomplete works cited slide.
Works cited slide included but with errors.
Correctly formatted works cited slide.
The follow up
All of the student comments were so positive and the finished projects were so excellent that we thought this was an extremely successful project.
"It was a fun project to do and it did help me learn the sonnets."
"I took a lot of time to create the flixtime and choosing the orders of pics and music. I liked using flixtime, it was an enjoyable project. It really brought Shakespeare's sonnets to life and help me understand the tone and meaning of the sonnets."
" I loved flixtime! It was something different that we have never done before. I learned a lot from doing this and from watching others."
"I learned a lot more about Shakespeare! My peers interpretations and analysis of the sonnets helped me greatly."
Thanks for reading! I really enjoyed this project and hope you did too!