At the start of this school year, Aloma Elementary School launched their Global Studies Academy, which will provide students with an in-depth study of countries around the world and help them to be culturally responsive, globally competitive, and technologically advanced. As an academy, it will serve all students who attend the school and there is no application required.
In order to create promotional information for students and parents, Aloma partnered with two of Full Sail’s Media Communications students, Eric Alvarez and Christian Trono, to create an informative video about the Academy and the services it provides.
“The most rewarding aspect of working on this project is giving something to the kids of Aloma Elementary,” says Eric. “It was really fascinating to see how excited some of these kids were to be on camera and how prepared they were. There was one kid who was so in the zone with his script that when we tried talking to him, it was as if we didn’t exist.”
Eric and Christian each had a hand in directing, while Christian handled the camera work and Eric focused on audio. Christian describes the editing process as his biggest hurdle, as it involved sorting through many different takes of the same scene to find the best clips for the video.
The video is currently posted on the school’s Facebook page, and will eventually be featured on their website as well. It will be used as an introduction for new students, and was featured at this year’s open house at the beginning of the year.
The Academy curriculum is built into students’ Social Studies and enrichment time, and each grade level focuses on a different area of the world. Kindergarten begins with North America and the Caribbean, first grade studies Australia, second grade studies Central and South America, third grade studies Africa, fourth grade studies Asia, and fifth grade studies Europe.
Aloma Principal, Dr. Jennifer Sanders, explains that the curriculum was designed to give the older children more difficult countries, while starting in America and the Caribbean for the youngest students to help them establish an understanding of where they’re from before they can understand their relation to the rest of the world.
Each month focuses on a different theme of study, from geography and history to academic life and religious traditions. “We knew that if we kept it very generic, the tendency would be to look at traditions in food, clothes, and music, and we wanted to go deeper than that,” says Dr. Sanders.
Students work on projects such as creating a banner that showcases the Great Barrier Reef to attending virtual field trips. The school has also introduced two new eagle mascots, Mike and Amy, and has launched a program similar to Flat Stanley or Where in the World is Carmen San Diego? that encourages students to take their own Mike or Amy with them during their travels and snap selfies to share on social media.
The entire program is based on a three-year roll-out, and Dr. Sanders says that they would like to incorporate more components of the program in the future such as an after school club, guest speakers, as well as an updated video and more collaborations with Full Sail.