Sitting in the desks normally occupied by students, a group of high school teachers turned their attention to the double screen at the front of the classroom earlier this week.
Don Goble, a multimedia instructor, greeted them from St. Louis, Mo., where he sat on the other end of the video conference call.
The teachers had assembled in the Golden Isles College and Career Academy classroom for one of many sessions they completed for the annual Camp T & I, a collaborative faculty workshop for teachers across the state.
The session with Goble on Thursday morning was hosted for video production teachers and focused in part on how this education is beneficial for students.
“If our kids don’t want to be newsmakers, filmmakers, journalists, that’s OK,” Goble told the teachers. “The skills that they’re gaining through cinematography — writing, production, collaboration, teamwork and editing — will make them marketable.”
GICCA has served as host for Camp T & I, a professional development workshop, since 2010. The camp is open to teachers of career, technical and agricultural education programs (CTAE) including architecture, construction, metals, audio/video graphics and automotive education.
CTAE programs have grown significantly in Georgia in recent years. As the programs expand across the state, Camp T & I grows as well. This year, 170 teachers registered for the event, which was spread out in the classrooms and labs at GICCA.
“It allows an opportunity for teachers of the same programs to get together,” said Hilton Neeld, the graphic design instructor at GICCA. “… It’s us sharing that creative knowledge.”
The teachers review state standards, exchange lesson plans and ideas and explore new technology and other teaching tools.
Goble’s presentation for the video production teachers was delivered using technology that students will be able to use in their classes.
“At the touch of your cell phone, you’re in the conference,” said Kevin Pullen, the broadcast and video production instructor at GICCA.
Video and film production programs are among the fastest-growing CTAE programs in the state, Pullen said. When he first started attending Camp T & I, he said about six video production teachers took part. This year, about 70 video and film production teachers came to the workshop.
“This is a little bit of our time to do (technology education), but it’s a little of our family reunion time too,” said Pullen, who brought shrimp and grits to serve to the group Thursday. “… This is our chance to get face to face and kind of be in the same space together. We celebrate that.”
As Camp T & I grows, larger groups of students across the state will in turn benefit from this collaboration, Pullen said.
“The skills that you are teaching are lifelong skills,” Goble told the teachers.