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Super learning experience for RHMS drama and tech students

The “Super Hero Origin” films that were created by the drama and technology classes at RHMS, involved the use of the green screen in order to create many of the special effects and illusions. NHTV students Matt McCollam and Logan Bakken are pictured working on their video in the tech lab in front of the green screen wall.

By Amy Shanahan, photo courtesy of Scott Melanson

Two of the most popular and most acclaimed elective classes at Rocky Heights Middle School (RHMS), came together this semester to collaborate on a unique project. Under the guidance of drama teacher Maclain Looper and technology teacher Scott Melanson, seventh and eighth grade students in both drama and media production (Nighthawk Television, or NHTV) classes worked together to create “Super Hero Origin” films.

Students in NHTV first developed story lines and wrote professional scripts for their films. Meanwhile, students in the drama classes prepared, rehearsed, and created videos of audition monologues in hopes of receiving a role in one of the films. In conjunction with the audition video, the drama students worked in the tech lab with Mr. Melanson to create actors’ resumes and photographed head shots to use in their auditions. Mr. Looper worked with the NHTV students and instructed them as to how to direct a scene with actors.

The NHTV students then viewed the audition tapes, resumes, and head shots to cast the actors into their films. The visions of the NHTV students were brought to life by the drama students, as the stories were filmed, produced and edited. Mr. Looper remarked, “This is the most authentic project my class will have this year. These students are receiving real-world experience in a classroom setting.”

The end result was a collection of creative, entertaining films created through a collaborative effort between two extraordinary classes. According to Mr. Melanson, “The drama and video production classes are right next door and it only made sense to do a project together.”

To learn more about Rocky Heights Middle School and the elective classes offered, visit



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