Moenkopi Youth Program – Tuba City

Breaking the ice: We were amazed with the kids. So well behaved, shy at first but the first icebreaker soon did it did the job and broke the ice as teams competed to build the highest structure out of newspaper.. ‘ last one standing wins’. Ray led the winning team with his physics. Following this, the kids began to open up, by the end of the day it was obvious we wouldn’t need any more ice breakers. Breaks were taken playing basketball on the indoor court at various points in the day. The kids were energised, the crew, slightly less so.

Pleased inspectors: The sight of the kids exploring the tools impressed the project director from the Moenkopi youth project and a group of visiting Gates Foundation people who fund the equipment at the centre.

Projects completed:

Pictorial intros: Polaroid’s were taken and put onto the white board. Each crew member and kid went onto the board with their names.

Hands on: A series of panoramic pictures around and about the centre were taken by the kids under the guidance of Nirit.

Word play: A playful exploration into the Hopi language and everyone’s defining characteristics got underway as each crew member and kid told the group what ‘Happiness is’ in one word. Everyone then wrote their word on a piece of paper, English one side, Hopi the other and presented their words to the camera. The crew then guided the kids to take the filmed images through to a finished piece. Basically, using word play to introduce all aspects of digital media production; concept, filming, sound design.

Things to work on
A Nikon Coolpix 5000 and a JVC dvcam were broken, so giving the kids a ‘how to handle equipment’ tutorial becomes priority for tomorrow.

Added diligence to the supervision of the kit at all times is re-enforced amongst the crew.

The heat: the computer room is actually a cunningly disguised sauna. No air conditioning but we do have one small fan.

Back at base:
Crew meeting >>
A project meeting was held to review the day and tighten the project planning for the rest of the week. Based on what was learnt about the kids today, the group decide to see if the kids want to involve their love of basketball within their exploration of their own language. There will be a basketball tournament, with the kids creating the promotional materials, the soundtrack and a short film about basketball.

Navajo traditions

Gill, Murray and Annabel drove through to the Wallmart at Flagstaff for essential technical supplies. Were glad theyre back, following their experience with large trucks happily sitting in the middle of the road. All obstacles were neatly avoided by Murray who was combating a day of intense work and heat by envisaging points in the landscape as looking mysteriously like the Scottish highlands, thus proving the power of the mind over matter, as that Scottish breeze kept him alert.

Meanwhile back on the Rez, Jon, Nirit, Lucy and Felix listened to Navajo tales of witchcraft. The spoken words were recorded, but, no images. To protect the anonymity of the individual, their voice will be disguised.