Next up in the Category Tips Series: Documentaries! Students may be experts with technology, but there are some substance and style issues they should pay attention to when creating documentaries.
- "Say cow, see cow." The images on screen should match the script that is being read. If you are speaking about the bombing of Pearl Harbor, don't just show random pictures of Hawaii, or stock footage of planes. Make it match!
- Use primary sources as images. Photographs are not the only images that work for documentaries. Use newspaper articles, documents, posters, propaganda, advertisements or artwork, to name a few.
- Divide the documentary into sections with headlines. For clarity, it helps to insert "headlines" in between sections, so viewers know what is coming up next. Keep them short and sweet.
- Record the script in small increments. If you try to record too much at once, there is more of a chance you might stumble over lines. Find a very quiet place, and record 30 seconds to one minute at a time.
- Music and footage can be helpful, if they advance your argument! Don't just use music to use music. Make sure it has a purpose. Also, using historical film footage is a great idea, as long as it matches your subject and helps your analysis.
- Keep track of all images used. You will need to account for your all of you images in your bibliography. Just citing "Google Images" does not count!