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Canyon Heights Academy Middle School hosted its tenth annual Documentary Film Festival. Each year the Film Festival highlights the students’ use of technology to create short films incorporating curriculum objectives in language arts, technology, public speaking and theology. As a theology project, the films are intended to help students express theological ideas through film as well as teach the students to be critical and thoughtful consumers of visual media through the creation of their own media product.

The syllabus for creating the film is designed to mimic the professional process from concept creation, marketing of the film, focus groups for input, a “run” in the CHA theater and awards.

Students in roles of writer, producer or director are required to write a screenplay, communicating a theological or moral, ethical message using imagery, color, sound and narration or dialogue. Sixth grade portrayed a Biblical story. Seventh grade presented a story portraying a Sacrament. Eighth grade presented a story related to defense of the Catholic faith.

Equipment like iPod Touch and iPads were used to film, edit, provide voice-over, add sound, etc. The students used iMovie or Final Cut ProX to create the final work.

Awards are presented for Best Story (one winner per grade), Best Production Value (flow, development, location, props and costume), Best Film Quality (cinematography, editing, light and sound) and Best Overall Impression.

Congratulations to this year’s winners!