Young Citizens should read the full Participant Guidelines for information on creating, editing and uploading their video. Here are some extra tips and videos to watch:
The bundled editing programs available with most video cameras are not as easy to use, or accessible, as those already on most PC and Mac computers.
If it’s not already included with their computer Windows Live Movie Maker can be downloaded for free.
Of course, if the student has access to more robust programs such as Final Cut or Adobe Premier they are welcome to use them.
Canada's History Bumper
As part of your video, each participant must add a Canada's History "bumper" — a file that is inserted at the beginning to give all the 2014 video entries a unified look. Canada's History has prepared this file for you to use and you can download it now.
You should watch the top 2012 Young Citizens videos to get a sense of different formats and techniques that you can use. Remember: your video must be between 3-4 minutes long.
A Strong Format
Although this clip was produced by grownups and slightly too long for a Young Citizens’ video, their format is a good template to consider: open with the student introducing their topic, provide an interview with an expert, and integrate photos, archival documents and other research material.
Text vs Audio Voice-over
Cameras have an audio recording option which gives students the opportunity to break away from the text writing of conventional school work, however text can still be used to great effect as an introduction, conclusion or transition between ideas. Here is a good example for kids who prefer to use text rather than audio — notice the good intro, followed by a nice mix of other source materials.
When using text, be sure to proofread (and have a friend or teacher as a second set of eyes) to catch typos, improper grammar, spelling mistakes, etc. Watch the intro of this video again and notice the spacing of the first few sentences: double spaces between words where there shouldn’t be, a misplaced space before the period and missing space after the period. The names of the ships should be in italics.
When using music or sound effects, you must receive permissions from the rights holders and provide a copy of the permission with your submission. Any video using copyrighted materials without permission will be immediately removed from the website and considered ineligible.
This footage shows how to transition back and forth between the narrative of facts and re-enactments. Nothing will make a student feel more like a real filmmaker than a good re-enactment, but a re-enactment can require a lot of time and effort, depending on its complexity. The student should take this into consideration when planning out their schedule, arranging for other people to participate and collecting props or costumes.
Caution: If choosing to incorporate re-enactments they should be as authentic as possible. If depicting a speech, it should be the actual words of the speech, not a summary or modernization. We are not expecting Oscar®-level costuming, but clothing and hairstyles should be more appropriate to the era — a T-shirt, jeans and funny hat is not a costume. Piercings should be removed (unless integral to the shot); contemporary/funky hairstyles should be covered up.