This semester I have been given a year 7 science class, which although is out of my qualified Phys Ed area, lies within my own personal interests. At the present we are studying the Solar System and the elements that exist within it. ┬áThe students have been highly engaged as we (including me) learn about all of the incredible things within space. With this in mind I wanted to utilise their enthusiasm for the topic and come up with a unique assessment piece that would not only be fun for the students, but fun for me to assess. This is what I came up with…

1. At present there is an excellent series airing on Australian Free to Air TV called ‘Voyage to the Planets‘ which is freely downloadable on the series website.

2. Each week the students are given a copy of the weeks episode and import it into Windows Movie Maker.

3. They are then responsible for editing the 50 minute footage into a trailer no more that 1 minute in length.

4. ┬áThis new ‘trailer’ is then added to the previous weeks trailer to make a highly succinct voyage of the planets loaded with interesting information from the solar system.

So why do I feel this is a valuable piece of assessment? Well at the completion of the series the students will have edited the entire series into a much more manageable size. This information is much more likely to be retained and developed in future years. This method has also peaked my students interest within space even more so, with the students usually watching and taking notes of the scenes they will use within their trailer from home.

So far it has been an incredibly successful assignment idea that I will be trialling in other subject areas. What do you think? Does it have merit?