Lesson: Rewrite the Script of Imperialism: Short, Short Film Workshop
- Clipboards – one for each group
- Paper and pens for each group
- Fabric and costumes
- Sheets (light-colored, to draw backgrounds on) or a very large whiteboard
- Attached Short, Short Film Kit (9 pages)
- Video editing software (comes with your flip camera, iMovie comes on Macs)
- Cords to connect cameras to computers (note that cell phones have a wide variety of USB ports)
- Classical or “theme” music available on computers for laying over video
Print out a copy of the Short, Short Film Kit for each group. Trim the top of each page down to where the text starts. Reverse the order of the pages, so that the longest page is on the bottom. This will guide students through the film making process step by step.
Remind students that this project set us out to try some mini-filmmaking and now that we clearly understand how imperialism happened and many of its consequences, we are ready to make films that imagine it ending differently. (MORE POSITIVELY! THINK ABOUT EMPATHY!)
Walk students briefly through a clipboard using an example case. An example is Jamaica, where the United Kingdom could have chosen to pay the amount they didn’t spend on the labor of slaves and indentured servants who worked in their colony there, on building the education infrastructure for Jamaicans. There could have been sponsored study abroad and world-class universities for all young people. This would have put Jamaica at the top of research, technology and arts in the world and draw foreign investment in their companies. Jamaica could have become a wealthy and advanced country. This could be shown in a short, short film by depicting Jamaican slaves becoming free, being handed passports and books, being invited into a fancy classroom, earning diplomas, and then putting on suits and making money or traveling around the world. Emphasize to students that in many cases the story can be told without dialogue, and this makes filming exponentially easier.
Students design, practice and make films in small groups.
Show films at an appointed time to the audience of your choice. Allow students to explain briefly if they have not used dialogue. Grade students using attached rubric.