Digital Media Class
One of the classes currently offered at Caldwell Career Center Middle College for the Advanced Technology Academy students is Digital Media. Digital Media students are learning how to design graphics using Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator, how to take pictures from different angles with professional lighting, and how to create short videos and commercials. Students seem to enjoy this class, so we thought it would be interesting to find out what is their favorite part of the class.
Guy Myers, the Advanced Technologies Academy leader, teaches Digital Media and Advanced Digital Media to the sophomore class. When asked what he liked most about teaching the class, he responded; “It mixes my two favorite things, art and technology.” He is skilled in both subjects, and even though he is educated in all the software the students use in class, he explains that the most challenging part of teaching the class is “Keeping up with software changes and having to unlearn and then relearn after software updates.” Understandably, he said his favorite project was the “ Camera Angles Video project, where the students learn different camera angles and techniques.”
We asked student Max McMahan a few questions. When we asked if he thought he was more successful when collaborating on a project, his answer was “When it comes to creativity, yes, and we get to have fun with each other along with getting everything done before the deadline.” He also agreed that it was easier to get the work finished and to decide what needed to be done. When asked if it was easier to catch mistakes, he responded “Yes, because if you made a mistake then your partner can see it and fix the mistakes you can’t see.”
Collaborating on a project or assignment tends to help students by having someone else there to check for mistakes. It can also be helpful, because the group or partnership can bounce ideas off of each other to figure out what they want to create. Collaboration is an important way for students to learn how to work as a team, and learn to incorporate more than one idea into a project. Working together provides an opportunity for students to learn from each other as well as learning from a teacher. It encourages kindness towards fellow classmates and allows students to practice work in a group setting.
When interviewing Advanced Technology Academy student Morgan Tiffany, we asked her some related questions. The answer she gave when asked if she thinks we should have more creative freedom in class was “Um, yes and no, I think we do get a lot of creative freedom like with the smiley face project we are doing right now, we can do whatever we want, but I think there are certain projects where I just want to do what I want.” We agreed that all schools should offer more creative freedom, we then proceeded to ask if she thought other schools should offer Digital Media or a class that is similar. She responded with “Sure, it’s a good opportunity to get ahead in learning these applications. It also gives students an opportunity to explore and be very creative while creating projects that could prepare them for future careers.” She then went on to talk about her future career “I will definitely go into animation or something similar. Since I will have taken Digital Media, I will already be skilled in vector animation, since we learned Adobe Illustrator and it creates vector drawings, because it is a drawing application. I will also be skilled in Adobe Photoshop, so if I went into a job where people take pictures of models I would be able to go into Photoshop to make sure they look pristine.”
In conclusion, we believe that Digital Media is a wonderful addition to the Advanced Technologies Academy. We encourage all classrooms to implement more creativity and to help advance people towards creative and logistical careers. We are proud to be able to participate in courses like these. As a result of this course and courses like this, we will be skilled in software we would not have otherwise learned.