This week, RCTV is the playground for the creativity of kids attending the RCTV/Writers & Books Summer Camp for kids ages 9 through 12. The kids learn all about creating media.

One of the things they learn is how to operate the cameras, to floor manage, to handle sound, and to direct in RCTV’s studio.  They’ll show off their studio skills to their parents on the last day as they actually shoot a show live with parents in the room.

The area where you really see their creativity explode is when they create a 90-Second Newbery Film Festival Submission. The kids are tasked with selecting a Newbery Award or Honor book and determining the plot, writing the script, auditioning for parts, and putting together the props and costumes.  Oh, and did I mention, adding a twist to the story? That is where their creativity really gets fired up!

While there is certainly adult supervision, training and oversight, the camp is “all hands on deck,” and the kids do the filming and direction as well.  Sometimes the camp directors do the editing, with guidance from the kids. Other times, when the kids already have experience with editing, they edit the films, in time to show parents the rough cut at the ending celebration on Friday afternoon. This year, these ambitious kids chose two books: The One and Only Ivan and Number the Stars. Wait until you see the twists they’ve added to these plots!

The camp is not all work (although none of the kids seem to feel as if it’s work).  They also play games such as bus stop, poison dart frog and others. They also get a chance to play, and sometimes film, outside.

This year, we collaborated with The George Eastman Museum, Writers & Books and KidsOutAndAbout to host the first Rochester-based public screening of the 90-Second Newbery Film Festival at the Dryden Theatre. Close to 400 attendees laughed at James Kennedy and Linda Sue Parks’ onstage antics, and the kids’ 90-Second Newbery films, submitted from across Monroe County. The event was such a success that we plan to host the festival again next year, featuring works created in 2016.

If your child or teen is interested in participating in an RCTV/Writers & Books Media Camp, we’ll be holding two more this summer. The camp that runs the week of August 8 from 9 AM to 3:30 PM is for ages 9 – 12. The camp that runs the week of August 15 from 9 AM to 3:30 PM is for ages 13 to 16.

We are always thrilled to work with the kids in these camps, to encourage their creativity, and add to the educational resources that can help your child in his or her academic career!

For more photos and some fun video from the camp, check out our facebook page and the photo albums.

Welcome Writers & Book Campers! | RCTV Media Center