This year Victoria College was one of four schools selected to take part in the INTO FILM Filmmaking Programme. A core aspect of the programme is the provision of filmmaking support and opportunities for young people across the UK, enabling them to confidently develop the skills to make their own short film. Filmmaking is an accessible and beneficial tool for engaging pupils, giving them a voice and affording them the opportunity to share their stories with others. In addition, filmmaking supports the development of a range of transferable skills including communication, teamwork and problem solving.
A group of Year 10 Pupils at Victoria College received professional support from a local film practitioner, Matt Curry (www.bluebirdmedia.org). Pupils lead the programme from the development, creation and the production of their own short film. The pupils quickly learned that filmmaking is a team activity and requires a range of different skills; drawing on the strengths of everyone involved and enabling each person to achieve. Creative thinkers worked on the ideas, talented writers took charge of the script, ICT experts handled the editing, organisers became directors, and performers acted; there was a job for everyone.
The programme supported the development of all aspects of communication skills including presenting ideas through group work, writing and reading scripts and listening to direction on the day the film was being shot. These activities helped all pupils involved become more confident communicators.
Making the film increased their confidence and self-esteem, both during and after the project as they discovered new skills. Their creative input was taken seriously alongside film professionals and the positive work environment gave them a context to accept and develop from peer feedback and specialised guidance.
Once the programme completed and the film was finished, INTO FILM sponsored an event at Queens Film Theatre where all four schools from across Northern Ireland were able to debut their films on the big screen. It was a great event and a wonderful opportunity for collaboration with the community and surrounding schools. The pupils at Victoria College were delighted to see their end product showcased in a big cinema, “It was such a fun day and I couldn’t believe it when I actually saw our film up on the big screen!”