On the Air

GLOVERSVILLE – One morning at Gloversville Middle School, students were treated to the faculty dramatically singing along to the “Frozen” movie’s “Let It Go.”

The school watched the broadcast on YouTube after students recorded it as part of the “Gloversville Middle School Morning Show.”

“It’s just really fun thinking of new material and working as a team to make this entertaining,” said Maya Rivera, a seventh-grader who helps put together the daily show.

Since October, students have been taking the time to film, edit and produce the morning news program.

The primarily student-driven newscast features the morning announcements, public-service announcements, district-related advertisements, school news or features, and comical skits or jokes.

Students put together the show each day and post it on YouTube for all middle school students to see each morning in their home rooms.

Students from the non-credit student enrichment program, Writing and Media, and others with free time throughout the day work on writing, filming and editing the show, which usually runs for three to five minutes.

Seventh-grader Lane Daley said when the newscast first started, his peers said they wanted more humor and skits, so the show transitioned from a reading of the morning announcements to a full-blown show with acting and comedy.

“During the state test, we made really funny videos for the students,” Daley said. “The students were telling me ‘We need more humor, we need new material, we need more students, we need more skits,’ so we just went from there.”

Middle school Principal Mark Batty said when he came to the school, he found a full news set on the campus in a room that was being used as storage. He and school librarian Megan Hallenbeck decided it would be great to use the space as it was intended.

“[The room] had gone dormant over the last three to four years, so when I came in, I wanted to use it,” Batty said. “The over-the-loud speaker morning announcements don’t get heard or paid attention to, but when you add a little video or clips of things going on, not only does it give credibility to the announcements, but also allows all the parents to see what is happening on YouTube.”

After clearing the space, the middle school students began developing the prerecorded morning show, Hallenbeck said.

Hallenbeck and Batty said when the show first started, Hallenbeck took on a majority of the work putting the show together, including the technical editing process, but by next week, the show will be run entirely by the students.

“Different classes come in throughout the year, so it changes who is involved,” Hallenbeck said. “The students plan it, write it and shoot it, so the majority of this is student-driven. They are really getting into editing now, so by next week, it will be entirely student-created.”

Hallenbeck said when the show first started, the process was put together and filmed on iPads, but the show has since acquired more professional equipment such as cameras and a teleprompter system.

“It has really evolved and expanded in a short amount of time,” said Hallenbeck, crediting the show to more student involvement.

Hallenbeck said the students are learning about video and audio editing software, green screens, special effects and the tedious process of planning and organizing shows. They also are developing better writing skills.

The students involved simply say it’s fun.

“It’s just really fun thinking of new material and working as a team to make this entertaining,” said Rivera.

Rivera and fellow seventh-grader Jacob Grant said they have committed their time to the morning show to help attain their goals of becoming writers.

Batty said the newscast isn’t only educational; it also has brought the faculty and students closer, considering nearly two-thirds of the students and staff have been featured in the show.

Each episode is uploaded on YouTube. The entire building can play it during the home-room period. Parents can also find all of the shows by searching “GMS Morning Show” or visiting the school website.