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NNPS-TV has blueprint for EDC video success

Dream Builders title screenThe EDC intro video title screen
Photos: Video capture

NNPS-TV's production team has the "blueprint" to create a perfect Engineering Design Challenge video, which is apropos for the latest iteration of the hands-on STEM competition, which was sponsored by James River Architects.

James River Architects boasts designing many local buildings including Riverwalk Landing in Yorktown; the Monitor Center at the Mariners' Museum; and Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery.

The video NNPS-TV made to introduce the design challenge is called "Dream Builders." It was shot by Station Manager Jim Anklam and Producer Nik Long, and edited by Production Specialist Aaron Moore.

The Engineering Design Challenge is part of Newport News Public Schools' ongoing STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education initiative.

model of building
A model on display at James River Architects

The challenges are held throughout the year for elementary, middle, and high school students. For the competition, student teams put their STEM knowledge to work, designing and building something, in this case a model of a building.

This time, students were given one of four different assignments: creating a model of either a STEM school, hair salon, grocery store, or an all-you-can eat buffet restaurant. Each assignment had criteria like a minimum number of tables and chairs or parking spaces or including a bakery and a deli in the grocery store.

This EDC was for second- and third-graders. It was held June 7 at Newsome Park Elementary School.

NNPS-TV's video is played at the beginning of the event to give the students background information prior to the challenge being revealed. It presents scientific instructional information and relates it to the sponsor and the challenge at hand.

Anklam and Long shot video at the office of James River Architects to show the types of models the architects create for their projects. They used three different cameras to achieve different effects, like a DSLR camera that can create shallow depth of field. They also used rack focusing, which is a technique where the focus of the lens is changed in the same shot, bringing something into focus that previously was not.

Moore used that video and some aerial video of the USS Monitor Center they already had to create the intro video, adding transitions and effects and a title screen.

Long did the voiceover, using a script that was written by STEM Instructional Specialist Kevin Nelhuebel and finalized by the NNPS-TV production team.

The video includes NNPS high school students being given a tour by James River Architects President R. Anderson Moberg. These students, from Heritage High's Governor’s STEM Academy, assisted at the EDC. They presented the challenge on stage and helped the young students when needed. A representative from James River Architects was on hand as well, to help the students with their projects and any questions they had.

The NNPS-TV production team "designed and built" another fantastic intro video, helping support the STEM curriculum in Newport News Public Schools.