The Headlines Today

Make your own news programme

What do you need?
  • A video camera
  • Paper and pens
  • People to appear in your film

As with any activity, they will need an adult to help them.

  • How many can do this?
  • Will suit what age?
  • How long does the fun last?

Create your own news programme showcasing the news in your house, family or school.

Step 1

Before the kids start, you need to encourage them to decide on what the news agenda is for that day. They need to have a clear idea of what it is that they want to film. It could be a tongue in cheek story of ‘What my family did this summer’ or a report on a youth club that’s closing down or the fact that the local stream dried out this summer and why this might be. The key thing to remember is to encourage them to keep it simple. Stick to filming one piece. Get this right and eventually they can progress to completing the whole show.

Step 2
Step 2

Once they’ve decided on the topic, they then have to plan out what it’s going to look like before they start shooting. They can do this by creating a simple storyboard. A storyboard is a drawing plan of what each scene of the film is going to look like – see picture, If, for example, it’s about the local stream drying up, they might have the presenter talking to the camera in the first box; the second box could highlight that they will be filming the stream; and the final box might be the presenter interviewing a neighbour. Under each box they should also feature bullet points for what that person is going to say.

Step 3

Next they need to decide who is going to be best to present each news story. They might want to do a camera test to see who would be best for each part.

Step 4
Step 4

It is now time to start shooting. See if you can find someone who can help edit the film using simple film edit software on a computer. If this isn’t possible, then the simplest way to do this is to film it in one piece of film, by stopping and starting every time you want to change the scene or camera angle.

Step 5

Once they get the hang of filming, then there are lots of clever and fun techniques that they can start to develop. A couple of suggestions are featured below:

Create an animation film of one of your toys

For this technique you need to make sure the camera is held somewhere really still. Balancing it on a table is ideal. To create the technique you need to film your toy for one second in one position. You then need to move it forward and continue to film each movement for another second. This takes time but it produces a brilliant effect. Animating Lego creations or an Action Man for example are both great places to start.

Create a magical effect where one person changes into another

Film the back of one person walking towards the door. Stop filming; go to the other side of the door and film again but this time with someone else walking towards you. When you run the film it will look like the first person has become someone else!