Martinsburg, WV, August 10, 2011 --(PR.com
)-- Getting students excited about learning can be a huge challenge. A new website has launched, just in time for Back-to-School, that hopes to help. Classroom Moments features brief (1-3 minute) videos, hosted by students, as well as activities and worksheets to accompany each video. Each month the site debuts 24 new videos, providing a growing resource for teachers and homeschoolers.
"We have had the project in development for over a year," says Darla Gaige, Executive Producer of the series. "In talking with students, we found that their biggest complaint about school was that nothing seemed relevant. So rather than focus on the traditional angles, we dug a little deeper. We found the stories that the kids might find interesting. For example, they might be more willing to learn about the Siege of Vicksburg after learning about Orion Howe, who was 14 when he fought at that battle, and became the youngest recipient of the Medal of Honor."
In addition to History, the site covers English, Vocabulary, Science, Math and The Arts. "We get a lot of feedback from our young hosts, and they are our test market," says Gaige. "I know we have a good episode when the hosts and our young interns can't wait to try the science experiments, are emphasizing the vocabulary words that they use in conversation, or get into discussions or competitions about the material."
Looking around the office you can see the effect. Three teenagers sit around a desk. They are laughing, throwing out film titles and humming songs. It looks like an average teenage conversation until you listen a little closer. "We're coming up with examples of leitmotif," says 12 year old Zoe Gaige, one of the show's hosts. "It's when a piece of music goes with a character, place or idea. Movies use them all the time, but don't really think much about it. And until we did the episode on Richard Wagner, we never, ever thought about opera composers. But he used the style all the time... Indiana Jones!" she cries turning back to her peers and humming the theme song from the show.
"Kids should definitely find it interesting," says Schylar Kees, another host who is also training as a director and editor on the series. "I've learned a lot, working on the show. And I think the fact that it features young hosts is a real plus. It shows students that their peers find it interesting and exciting. It isn't just another adult lecturing at them."
"I took a demo home last night," said Asia Jones, a 17 year old intern with the program. "My little sister watched it 3 times and wanted to do the experiment right then."
"And that's the goal," says Gaige. "Getting the kids excited about learning. Showing them that it can be fun."
Classroom Moments is available online at www.classroommoments.com as well as on DVD. For more information contact Darla Gaige at email@example.com.