This is a very special blog post as it is the first time I have had a guest blog post before. This post is written by Rachael Millar who is an English teacher at saltash.net. This was the first time Rachael had used the KINECT in her classroom and this is what happened.
My Year 8 English class are working on a unit called News in the 20th and 21st Century, so I thought an excellent way to make it 21st Century would be to use the KINECT Green Screen to let the pupils be ‘real’ news reporters. Pupils prepared news reports in groups of 4, including anchors and weather people. I uploaded two images: one of a newsroom, and the other of a generic weather map of the UK. The groups then used these backdrops to perform their reports.
The buzz that the group received from the satisfaction of performing their reports in front of the Green Screen was palpable, and certainly ignited their interest in the subject and gave them the added incentive to really put on a polished performance. With a smaller group you could also use the full 5 image slots to create a backdrop for an ‘on location’ reporter which would add to the professionalism of the whole project.
All in all using the KINECT added an element of professionalism which helped the pupils take pride in their work. I will certainly be looking to use the KINECT again: In the English classroom I am planning on using it to let pupils prepare Speaking and Listening presentations, the backdrop illustrating any point the pupils wish to emphasis; and in the I.L. (Integrated Learning) classroom I plan to use it to allow pupils to create short Documentaries which track the progress of a river. A video of part of the lesson can be found below:
We are hoping to develop this idea and use the KINECT Green Screen to broadcast news reports around the school. So watch this space for updates. Many thanks to Rachael for taking the time to share her experiences with the KINECT and thank you for taking the time to read this.
You can download the KINECT Green Screen form here for free: