Let’s talk…

Communication. An action we’re all familiar with. Literally and metaphorically this vital form of discussion, debate or speech; forms a vital part of our daily ritual. Why write about something which is a common occurance in everyone’s life? Why not say it? In an instance, this becomes relatable as we understand the principle of talking. But lets step back from this and understand why communication plays a part of our daily routine.

‘Let’s talk’ famous words quoted by Coldplay are essentially what this blog entry is about. Talking is an important form we’re all familiar with, but until we sit down and think about it’s infinite role in life we can begin to appreciate the importance of it.

PSC has given the opportunity to explore the importance of communication. Whether that’s with students or teachers, communication plays an important part in the running of a class. By identifying and replicating the teachers technique, I’ve found the level of interaction between students has increased. By keeping a professional attitude towards the role, communication plays a vital part in the development of our understandings.

This may all seem completely unrelated. But communication clearly plays an essential role in our everyday life. Team communication at work is necessary to complete a job or when writing a blog you need to communicate.

You may have noticed the tone of the entry has changed. I’m coming to the end of my placement as PSC. It’s been an exciting few months with lots of challenges along the way. It’s quite an unusual feeling knowing something is coming to an end. It’s not quite sadness nor is it fustration. Maybe its trepidation for the future. An uncertainty of whats next.

This post highlights the importance of ‘talking’ to one another. These skills are essential in everyday life. Whether outside the classroom or at home, I feel I have grown to embrace them. The future is an uncertain one but one that I will also embrace.

 

The Overview

Those who are new to the blog might not understand the title ‘Beyond Volunteering.’ Even though I’ll be continuing the blog after my module, this blog is a journey from now to infinity and beyond. Hence the title. It will track my progress from my 2nd year placement at PSC towards my job with EF this summer and beyond. Who knows were we will end up? Prehaps I should provide a little overview of my placement and what I’ve been up to. Heres a little extract from my prospectus I’m writing:

The Overview

“Peter Symonds College is an A-Level based institution dealing with Post-16 students from a variety of backgrounds. The College deals in various qualifications offering the students the choice of Academic studies to practical experiences. Whilst its focus is mainly on the sciences and other technical courses, the intuition also houses varying Arts based qualifications. The College prides itself on delivering an unbeatable student experience as well as astounding results. Peter Symonds boasts a 99.3% pass rate with results divided into sub categories per subject. These subcategories are divided into AS and AS2. With AS2 having a higher success rate over AS. My placement involved working with both groups of students within the Faculty of Arts. This would involve working within the Film and Media Studies department on a variety of projects. My role would involve aiding the students understanding of Adobe Premier and related programmes. As advisor I would inform students on technical acquisition of skills and communicating a specific style or genre connotation. Even though the placement is advisory based, it would provide me with the necessary foundations to pursue a career into teaching.”

Just a little extract from my prospectus I’m writing for the module. A small overview of the institution I’m working for. I’ve got to be honest, the writing style for this is a lot more formal. Rather than the informal nature of the blog. I thought it might give you guys a little insight into the College and what  I was doing. I’m loving the placement and hope it carrys on well into March. I’ve got two more dates sets for the end of next week so I’ll update the blog with more info about that. For more on my past exploits at PSC feel free to check out my other posts.

Until next time, I’d like to leave you with a few thoughts. Have you ever thought about ‘What could have been?’ or ‘Things could have been different?’ I’ll be writing about the past… again. But this time, detailing the ‘Wrong Path towards Uni.’ Another retrospective about the decision I took which lead me to were I am today.

 

 

Out of the Shallows… into even Deeper Water

The Adventures of Post-16 has certainly been eventful, each week presents itself with new challenges and hurdles to overcome. I’ve always said this would be an honest blog about my experiences into teaching. This weeks events have truly been eventful coming across file formats I didn’t recognise, being asked the inner workings of masks on Photoshop. You might be sat there thinking “This is easy” or “try harder next time.” Ive got to be honest, I was truly stumped. It surprised me to encounter techniques which I haven’t even covered in my degree. I was assisting with  A2 Film Studies. Maybe my degree I’m on focuses to much on the film and not the post production? It isn’t the first time I’ve ever been stumped but coming across technically challenging issues at this level was unexpected. The students I were helping out are extremely intellegent and extremely patient. Maybe my knowledge on the software was at fault, that I should prepared and familirised myself before I entered the classroom.

I had left the metaphorical shallows and waded into deep waters, so to speak. I had already noticed that some student’s were focusing on areas that I had no experience in whilst others were focusing on the editing via Premier Pro. Obviously, being comfortable with the later I turned my attention towards these guys. I could ensure that my knowledge from using Premier Pro could enhance there movie trailers.

In some respects, maybe I should have turned my attention towards those that were using software I hadn’t used. Prehaps it was a subconcious decision I took not to look like a tool. How can you prepare for something if you haven’t been briefed about it beforehand? The answer to that question… I don’t really know. I guess the good ol’ honest approach would say ‘Your responcible for your actions, go find out.’ I wish I had the ability to see into the future, were I could determine a situations outcome. Prehaps thats to OTT, maybe all I need is some common sense.

Generally speaking, organisation is one of my strong points, sometimes I’m to organised. On occasion things fall through the loop. Being producer for a variety of projects (during my degree) has improved my patience ten fold as well as preparation. One of the lessons I’ve learned is always have an exit plan. Or in this case alway have a plan.

It’s still keeping all my option open (career wise) but thats another post in itself. The focus of today’s entry was to show that you cant have everything go your way. That sometimes we encounter hurdles that we cant overcome… instantly. With a bit of hard work and persistance I might overcome them, until then I’ll have to make do with what I know. Back into the shallows, me thinks. 😀

Never stop Learning

Even though my placement doesn’t start again till next week, I’ve spent some time considering parts I’ve enjoyed that I haven’t talked about. Blogs are meant to be a retrospective and act as a point of reference. One aspect of placement was the ability to learn new skills within editing. I have used an older version of Premier Pro which has a built in DVD ripping tool. In the new version, the students learnt how to burn a DVD using Adobe Bridge. A package which is used across the Adobe Suite of programmes. This example may seem insignificant, however it showed me the simplicity of learning new skills which save on time.

The above reaffirms that you ‘Never Stop Learning.’ That the process will continue till your old and on deaths door. A little depressing, I know. But it’s true. Everyday you learn something new or build upon knowledge you already have. This blog will hopefully follow my journey from beginning to end. Whether that’s the next three years or thirty. No one knows. The beauty of blogs is that there timeless. My ramblings will still be here for eons to come. It might be forgotten, but it will always remain. Im still learning new stuff! 🙂

I was asked to show a student how to create a grain effect for an old TV. I had encountered a similar situation back in College that I could draw upon for this. Working with the student, we found a solution to the question. I found this extremely rewarding. It also increased my understanding of the software, as the edition used was different from what I’m familiar with. One skill that was necessary to apply was communicating the right message to the student and listening to there responce.

This week is my final time working with AS Media Studies. It’s been a great experience getting to know the cirriculum as well as the students work. Some of this experience harks back to my time doing Media Studies at GCSE as the focus on theory was used to gain a practical edge. I’ve learnt alot about myself in the process as well as helping towards the students final project before A2 begins next year. Using the updated software, I’ve learnt how to export video onto DVD using the Adobe Bridge software. Creating a secondary buring file for later projects/ or burns.

Working with Media Studies AS has shown me that communication is essential between the students and the technicians. Its a vital component in the success and delivery of the film. By determining a specific structure (early on in pre-production) we could speed up the application of editing.

I’m still getting use to the style of writing a blog. The previous few seemed like writing a diary. The last two paragraphs appear essay like. I apologise if these ramblings seem to go on… like a broken record player?? It’s difficult to seperate the blog from a more personal account and to meet the criteria of the module. This blog entry was designed to focus in on the areas I haven’t mentioned thus far. By doing so, I’ve brought forward the notion of reflection. (Hopefully) It’s an important tool. Even after numerous coffees, I still find it difficult to focus in. Maybe coffee wasn’t such a great idea? Who knows? What I do know is that Week 2 is fast approaching and the Horror of Film Studies AS awaits. 😉

It all begins with Everything

A massive thanks for stopping by da blog! Expect plenty of updates, thoughts and feelings based upon my experiences on placement this Semester. I’m at the University of Winchester studying a BA in Film and Cinema Technology. Bit of a mouthful, I know.

Standard stuff. Beyond Volunteering will trace my journey from my placement to beyond. Hence the title. Who knows what will happen in 5 years? I’d love to be working in Post-16, teaching film and media studies. My interest started at the beginning of my BTEC, 5 years ago. I studied at the Isle of Wight College in Moving Image. My interest grew whilst working with a great bunch of people. We would work on documentaries and dramas together throughout our two years. Looking back, this was a time when I was unsure what to do. Career wise or going to University.

The notion of moving onwards felt unusual and didn’t feel right at times. I knew I loved film, but I thought about diversifing into Journalism. Maybe I wasn’t ready for further education. Doing journalism was the biggest mistake I’ve taken. This reaffirmed my enthusiam for all things film. I thought I’d include some background to why I’d love to teach it. Not only is it rewarding its also a massive challenge. So far each day has proved exciting and dynamic.

My role at Peter Symmonds College is to help out with editing AS Crime Drama’s and Lifestyle Documentaries. If the students have a problem I try to help out. There’s several different groups in various different stages of production. Sitting down with the students, I begin to notice the quality of the material shot. One diffculty appears to involve students putting the footage into a structure. Working within a similar environment at Univerisity, I can relate to having the same problems myself. Sometimes its difficult putting together a story, if what you have is different from how you saw it.

It’s a difficult to write on paper or on a blog. It’s easier to talk about an idea than actually creating it on a computer screen. I knew from past experience the techniques I had learnt. By suggesting these to the students I began to learn one of the most important lessons I will ever learn. Patience. But thats for another day…

Blog at WordPress.com.