PUTNEY — Eighth-grade students from the Grammar School in Putney have been spending some time this winter at the Windham Regional Career Center. They're immersed in a film course there taught by Michel Moyse, the founding director of the Center for Digital Arts in Brattleboro.
Moyse has had a long-term collaborative relationship with the Career Center.
The Grammar School students are clearly enjoying themselves. Cassidy Martin, from Putney, shared that she likes that "We can write up our own skits and that we'll be able to create our own movies from that."
Amelia Opsahl, from Chesterfield, N.H., has enjoyed learning to use digital editing software. "I like the software. It's really high tech and literally the same software used in making most of the commercials we see on TV."
The Center for Digital Arts opened in 1997 and since then has worked with hundreds of students, many of them through its collaboration with the Career Center. Their high regard as a community resource was the primary reason that Hannah Richards, visual arts teacher at the Grammar School, reached out to them for these classes.
The other impetus came from Richards' husband, Max Adam, who himself studied filmmaking with Moyse while he was a student at Brattleboro Union High School and taking some of his classes at the Career Center.
According to Richards, many of her students have had prior experience working on their own videos and stop animations in iMovie, "So the chance to work with Michel on more complex editing using FinalCut Premiere and other advanced software on the excellent equipment at the WRCC seemed like a natural next step to develop their skills and creativity."
Like many hands-on Career Center classes, this film course is providing students with an opportunity to explore their interests, expand their forms of artistic expression, gain new technical skills, and envision new possibilities for themselves, all of which the Grammar School says are hallmarks of an excellent learning environment, and one that its students seem to appreciate.
The Windham Regional Career Center provides technical and career training for students from the following high schools: Brattleboro, Leland and Gray, Twin Valley, Bellows Falls, and Hinsdale, N.H.
For more information, contact Anne Doran at 802-451.-3463.