Silver Team - Reality TV Lesson
Miss Aggie and Miss Shantelle
Wed July 15 – Thu July 16

Overview: Students learn about reality TV production through the study of reality television shows, through readings on reality television, and through the production of their own reality television.

Learning Objectives:
--Students will learn the differences and/or similarities between dramatic or situational comedy TV and scripted “reality TV”
--Students will learn about how reality TV shows are made in terms of how they are shot and how they are edited
--Students will learn that reality TV caters to specific audiences and creates messages appropriate to those differing audiences
--Students will learn how to edit video footage using the Flip camera software to make their own “reality TV” bios and profiles for the wikispace

Materials Needed:
--Flip camera and a tripod
Duration - 3 or 4 full days
1) Teachers will discuss with students their favorite reality TV shows, what themes and topics are addressed on those shows, whether the shows are “entertaining,” “informative,” or “persuasive.”
2) The following day in class, teachers will record the entire length of the class (at least 4 hours) in a “documentary”/reality TV style. Camera can be placed on tripod for the duration of class or one teacher can record students throughout the day. Students and teachers will then view portions of the footage together to get a feel for what the camera captured throughout the day.
3) Students will read and discuss article on how reality TV is produced (“How Media Constructs Reality Television”). In reading this article, teacher will explain the meanings of unfamiliar words, including “construct,” “casting call,” “dialogue”
4) Teacher will show clips of reality TV shows to students (examples could include: Tiny & Toya, The Real World, Survivor, Big Brother). Teacher will ask students to list what elements they notice within the reality shows (e.g. interviews, lapsed time, establishing shots, makeup and hair).
5) Teacher will compare introduction of a reality show (e.g. Run’s House) to the introduction of a sitcom (e.g. Friends) and discuss the differences and similarities in how the introductions are created and what expectations they set up for audiences.
6) Teachers(s) will make two videos from the footage of the classroom shot during the reality TV shooting day. Each video will have been edited to reflect two different purposes and be intended for two different audiences. For example, if one video to be made to show your boss a “productive learning environment,” and the other video to be shot for a commercial like Chuck E Cheese. These differing videos will show students how two entirely different stories can be told from hours and hours of footage. Teacher(s) will discuss the different depictions for the different audiences.
7) Students will learn to edit footage through the Flip software. They will sit at computers with all the footage we’ve captured with assignment of making their own “reality show” of themselves – a 2 – 3 minute profile of themselves that they’ll post to their wikispace profile. Teachers should emphasize audience for these pieces.
8) Students will also upload their videos onto their wikispaces.

Student Self-Assessment:
I can identify the different themes addressed in TV shows, such as persuasive, informative, and entertaining.
I can identify whether or not a TV show is being touted as a reality show or whether it is a dramatic or situational comedy show.
I can think about what is being omitted from reality shows.
I can edit a video to present myself to a specific audience.
I can identify what audience is captured in a reality show and what techniques are used to our attention.