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Children and young people in Oban, Scotland were recently treated to a visit from up-and-coming British filmmaker David Stoddart, who returned to his own primary and secondary schools to talk about his career in the film industry.
David Stoddart studied at the Arts Institute of Bournemouth, where he was selected as a Trailblazer as part of a nationwide scheme that highlights emerging talent in British film. He has directed several short films, and has recently won awards for his documentary Driven: The Fastest Woman in the World.
Returning to Park Primary and Oban High, David Stoddart talked to children and young people about his life, and how he broke into the film industry, as well as his experiences within it. He also talked about how to produce and edit films, leading to a challenge for the pupils.
David was a star, and really inspired the pupils with a fun, educational and engaging talk. The kids learning experience has been enriched by his visit.Damian Heaney, teacher, Oban High
Pupils in each of the schools have been asked to work together to produce a short film using the filmmaking lessons they've learned from Stoddart's visit. Oban High will produce a small promotional film about their school, while Park Primary will make a film trailer about the Battle of Bannockburn, a famous historical battle that took place nearby. David Stoddart will return to the schools to view the finished products in February 2015.
These challenges embrace the Curriculum for Excellence, and will draw upon several educational departments within the schools, asking different fields to work together. This is especially true for Oban High's project, which will see the English department drafting the script, the drama department providing actors, the media department editing, and so forth.
We're proud to have been able to facilitate this event, which provided children a rare insight into the film industry, and gave David Stoddart a chance to return to his roots, and revisit the institutions that initially led him on the path to filmmaking. We're sure his visit will ignite that same spark of interest in a new generation of Scottish young people.