National recognition for Skye primary school pupils’ film

Pupils from Elgol Primary School and their head teacher Ian Murray are pictured with Marc Smith and James Adams, who assisted them on their video shoot. Photo credit: Willie Urquhart – WHFP.

Pupils from a tiny Skye primary school recently made the finals in a national short film competition.

The youngsters at Elgol primary were challenged to make a one-minute film on the theme of ‘what Scotland means to you’ for the competition organised by the National Library of Scotland. In their film, pupils showcased the area’s famed stunning scenery and local wildlife, and their active involvement in playing shinty, to illustrate what the country meant to them.

The video was made in collaboration with parents Marc and Ailsa Smith, who run the video and animation company Cuillin Collective, while another parent, James Adams, helped them to record the soundtrack.

During filming the children gained experience of working with a drone camera and green screen technology. The film was screened at the National Scottish Youth Film Festival in Glasgow in November – and although it didn’t win, the well-received production will be preserved for future generations in the National Library of Scotland’s moving image archive.

Head teacher Iain Murray said: “It was a fantastic opportunity for the children to work in partnership with parents through the process to plan and produce both the film and the soundtrack. The children thoroughly enjoyed the process and gained experience of working with a wide range of technology.

“It fits very well with the skills for learning life and work agenda at the school. The skills developed through this process can be transferred to other areas of learning at the school. The children are extremely proud of what they have achieved and were delighted to be able to promote the local area in their film.”

What the pupils said

Bethany Macintosh (P5): “I enjoyed doing the filming and music because it gave us the chance to work with people who knew a lot about these things. It was a really enjoyable experience because we used lots of different technology to make it.”

Ailish Henderson, (P7): “It was amazing because we got the opportunity to use technology that we had not used before. If we got the opportunity I would definitely do it again.”

Maryann Mackinnon, (P7): “I think it was a big achievement for the school and it makes you feel proud. Getting the chance to use technology that I had never used was great.”

Jessie Adams, (P4): “It was great to see your ideas turn into the finished film. I loved being shrunk in the video.”