Twenty-one students from Jen Colantuoni’s homeroom class at South Elementary School went to the studios of Londonderry Community Access Television to put together news broadcasts relating to health and wellness issues.
Rotating in four groups of five to six students each, the students went
on the air and/or shadowed a student in Londonderry High School’s Advanced Television class, taught by Karen Robinson. The first group before the camera featured Nathan Haigis, Emily Milton and Marissa Duragamo, and each gave a convincing report on the need for exercise, proper nutrition and new discoveries to healthy living.
“We were asked by Mr. (John) Beaulieu to do a newscast and we were doing health at the time, learning about body systems and healthy living and how to keep your body healthy,” Colantuoni said. “So each of the four groups wrote reports about different aspects of health after they learned about all the body systems. Then they put it together into a news broadcast, and we recorded interviews and a Skype interview. We have informational articles, healthy living tips and we even have recipes.”
One of the segments included a recipe for a healthy snack that was done by Owen Rouse, 11. “You layer yogurt on the bottom of a bowl or tall glass and then add a layer of cereal and then a layer of fresh fruit like these strawberries. Then youdoitagainanditisa tasty snack,” Owen informed his audience.
When asked by floor director Maria Panacopoulos, 17, a senior at Londonderry High School, if he was going to eat it after the segment was over, Owen declined.
Tyler Geisel, 11, enjoyed his few seconds on the air but was nervous.
“I was kinda nervous because I knew my friends and everyone would be watching and when it was over, all I could say was thank God, and the stress just lifted away,” Tyler said.
The students had pretaped interviews with classmates, and those interviews were interjected during the segments.
The students also learned not “wiggle” their script and to look at a particular camera when it was their turn to speak. Microphones were clipped to their shirts, and the girls had to remember not to let their long hair touch the microphones. The students who weren’t on camera were shadowing the high school students in the booth and watching their classmates on monitors, as camera angles were switched from one angle to another.
“The kids are really cute and it’s a lot of fun, and we can be more interactive with them as they learn how to take direction. For them it’s their first time, and they’re doing great,” Pancopoulos said.