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The Lookout | January 20, 2018

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Videos highlights innovative teaching

Videos highlights innovative teaching

Jeremy Kohn
Editor in Chief

LCC’s “Classroom in a Minute” is a series of YouTube videos designed to highlight classes and show the creative and innovative ways professors teach inside their classrooms.

LCC Performing Arts Coordinator Melissa Kaplan talked about her involvement in the program.

“The idea was to encapsulate in one minute the essence of that particular class,” Kaplan said.

Kaplan, along with history professor Jeff Janowick, recruited LCC professors to participate in the project.

LCC Video producer/director Justus Rohlfs spoke about the beginnings of “Classroom in a Minute.”

“This project came together as the brainchild of Paul Price, the director of media services at LCC,” Rohlfs said.

Rohlfs, the one behind the cameras, said he can anticipate when something exciting will happen while shooting,

“You are literally waiting for perfect little moments,” Rohlfs said.  “You listen and then you know when to hit record and who to focus on, because you are engaged in the conversation.”

Rohlfs said he visited each class twice and is very cautious not to interrupt the class and disrupt student learning.

He said he used different camera techniques while shooting the “Classroom in Minute” skits. He even used a camera on a race car that ran on coffee.

“I strapped a tiny camera to the car and got some great angled shots for the video,” Rohlfs said.

Rohlfs said he hopes these videos brings some exposure to classes with low enrollment. He encouraged people to see the fun and exciting side of the classroom atmosphere.

“You have this preconception of these classes of just being boring work,” Rohlfs said. “When you can see visually how enjoyable it is for students — that they have these state-of-the-art resources – and see how well they are using them.

Kaplan talked about how Rohlfs’ creativity really shined in the creation of these videos.

“Justus is a fabulously creative producer and videographer and the instructors had a great time coming up with creative ways to enhance the videos,” Kaplan said.

One of the most tedious parts of the editing process, Rohlfs mentioned, involved choosing music for the videos. Rohlfs used different music such as powerful drums for staged combat, and soft electronic music for molecular biology.

“There were about 300 tracks I picked,” Rohlfs said. “Only like 30 of them were decent.”

The video producer asked students and student-employees to be a part of a focus group to narrow down the songs and make the final cut.

In future “Classroom in Minute” videos, Rohlfs said he would like to highlight different classes.

“I would like to go do some classes at LCC West Campus,” Rohlfs said. “West Campus has so (many) visually interesting things going on — like welding and all kinds of trade programs. That would be fun.”

“Classroom in a Minute” videos can be found on the LCC Stars YouTube page at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCooBEHa6gWTqCNkumznO-vw.

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