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START EDITING NOW! (Classroom Workshop Edition)

By Bill Davis
Videocraft Workshops

(480) 443-8669
10869 N Scottsdale Road, Suite 103-180
Scottsdale, AZ 85254

START EDITING NOW! Classroom Workshop Edition is a DVD tutorial on video editing. The package contains 1 instructional DVD (which includes 3 workshops) and 2 DVD-ROMs (which contain movies to be edited for each lesson). To use this training, you must have video editing software already installed on your computer. (For this review, we used Adobe Premier Pro 2.0.)

START EDITING NOW! does a great job covering the basics of video editing. The workshops will teach you about various cuts, dialogue editing, and scene pacing. The workshops introduce you to the concepts and then allow you to design a video flow for yourself. This process cements the lesson's ideas in your mind as you produce your very own masterpiece.

This particular edition has been designed for classroom use and sells for $129. Even though intended for classroom use, this product works well in a homeschool situation. The target age range for this workshop is high school. But as we all know with homeschooling, when children are given the chance to pursue their interests, they often excel in one area or another at younger ages. For this reason, if your child of any age has experience in or is interested in video editing and playing with the video camera, this software could be beneficial.

Our 9-year-old son, Christian, had already had some practice with editing and making video montages. START EDITING NOW! helped to extend that knowledge to enhance his editing techniques. He was also introduced to storyboarding, helping him to create a full, flowing story with video.

Christian would first watch a bit of the DVD workshop for instruction. The teacher, Mr. Davis, is engaging and teaches the concepts well. Mr. Davis would introduce a concept and then ask Christian to download a video clip or two from the DVD-ROM into his own video-editing software. Christian then had the chance to try out for himself a few of the concepts introduced by Mr. Davis.

One of the highlights of this course was the way it allowed for Christian to edit a variety of scenes in different ways. The instructor didn't give strict step-by-step directions but allowed for creative license. Christian was able to take the various scenes that were provided and then develop them in his own way.

The biggest drawback to START EDITING NOW! Classroom Workshop Edition would be the price. Although for the quality of instruction the price is reasonable, many homeschoolers will find the price too steep. (Also, prospective buyers should consider that one must have a decent computer and video editing software to make this program work.) The only other drawback to this program is that the scenes used for editing center on "typical" teenage culture. Although none of the scenes would be rated PG-13 by any means, the boy/girl relationships, peer dependence, and lack of respect for authority could bother many homeschooling families. Perhaps the folks at Videocraft Workshops would consider making a START EDITING NOW! Homeschool Edition!

This is what Christian had to say: "What I like best about START EDITING NOW! is that it helped me a lot at editing and making videos on my software. I learned about cut-aways, video-only inserts, cutting, take-aways, and crossovers. I love it. It makes editing fun. I would recommend this program."

Product review by Ron Burt and his 9-year-old computer whiz son, Christian, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, LLC, September 2007

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