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Develop media literacy skills. Analyze online behavior, then create a video ad using proven techniques. Summarize the campaign.

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Project Includes:
Teacher Guides, Student Workbooks, Customizable Resources, Review Questions, Extension Activities, Sample Files, Templates, Parent Letters, Assessment Tools
Tech Integration:
Business Studies, Language Arts, Media Arts
Tech Skill:
Animation, Data Management, Digital Citizenship, Spreadsheet, Video Production, Word Processing
Blender, Excel, Word, Docs, Forms, Sheets

In this project, students gain essential media literacy skills by becoming digital marketers. They produce a video ad to sell a new product. Their campaign begins with an analysis of selling tactics used in media messages. Next, they investigate how their target customer interacts with online advertising. To further prepare for the task, students explore video production techniques. Once aware of how companies manipulate viewers, they team up to create an advertisement using Blender. Upon completion, they summarize their marketing campaign in a professional report.

  • Media Literacy and Video Production Lessons
    Develop critical thinking for a generation of students who live in a world of nonstop media messages and information. By first analyzing commercials and then creating their own ads, students build awareness of techniques used by advertisers.

  • Real World Content
    Project-based learning challenges students to devise solutions to authentic problems. Students are engaged when they tackle a task that is meaningful to them. By creating their own video ads in this project, students not only master technology skills, but also build critical life skills such as problem solving, creative thinking, effective communication, and more.

  • Collaboration and Teamwork
    Although each student creates their own unique video ad, they must first work together in production teams to storyboard, plan, and film video footage. Together, they consider target audience, selling techniques, and convincing messages. They team up to decide on the action, characters, props, and camera position. After filming the raw shots as a group, each student uses Blender to produce their own final product.

  • Resources Designed for Middle and High School Grades
    Included in the project are a Teacher Guide and Student Workbook, which comes in both printable and paperless worksheets. Assessment Tools include a Summary of Skills Checklist, Storyboard Planning Sheet, and Evaluation Rubrics. Review questions and enrichment challenges are additional optional activities.

  • Free, Open-Source Software
    Use Blender, an online computer graphics software tool to teach video production techniques. No need to purchase expensive software!

Session 1: Analyze Online Advertising

Students investigate their exposure to online advertisers. To start, they consider consumption of media messages. Next, they critically think about how selling tactics, hidden messages, and stereotypes in video ads might influence their behavior or thinking. Afterwards, they build a questionnaire using Forms to discover how people interact with online advertising. These metrics will not only raise media awareness but will also inform placement of their video ad in upcoming sessions.

Session 2: Appy Camera Techniques

Students become videographers. To start, they analyze video ads to notice how shots, angles, and movement convey a message. Next, they experiment with a video camera to capture wide, medium, and tight shots. As well, they explore how zoom, pan, and tilt control viewer attention. These operational techniques will be used later to produce their own video ad.

Session 3: Explore Video Editing Tools

Students discover how to use Blender tools to create an ad. First, students customize the program window for video editing. Next, they import clips and explore how to arrange media in the timeline. By adding text overlays, effects, and transitions students produce a 15 second video that will captivate customer interest. These production techniques will be applied in the upcoming sessions to advertise a new product.

Session 4: Advertise a Product

Students design a video ad concept. Working as part of a creative team, they develop an advertisement for a new product. They write a script and storyboard each shot. Upon completion, they apply their knowledge of marketing and video production techniques to capture the footage.

Session 5: Create Video Ad

Students become video editors. They produce their own unique video ad using the footage captured from the previous session. To start, they import media into Blender. They then apply their editing skills to produce a fifteen second video ad. Tips support learning.

Session 6: Report Marketing Strategy

Students summarize their marketing campaign. Using either Microsoft Word or Google Docs they explain how their video targets a specific audience. Based on survey data, they recommend the best time of day and digital channel for the ad. To create a professional-looking document they format the layout to include a table of contents, headings, page numbering, and more.

Optional Media Literacy Lesson Plans
  • Spot the Selling Techniques: Analyze a video ad.
  • Control Ads: Learn about tracking tech.
  • Slogans and Catchphrases: Create slogans.
  • Word It Well to Sell It Fast: Explore sales tactics.
Produce a Video Ad using Blender

Integrate technology into a media literacy, digital marketing, or video production unit. Activities are ideal for middle and high school students.

  • Analyze ads to identify persuasion and production techniques
  • Build a survey about online behavior and interpret results
  • Capture different shots, angles, and movements
  • Work cooperatively in a production team
  • Plan and organize ideas using a storyboard
  • Isolate a frame and split a clip into two parts
  • Delete frames, add transitions, and apply effects
  • Add and format text overlay
  • Record a voice-over or import background music
  • Summarize a marketing campaign in a report

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