Testimonials

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IMG_0316“I really enjoyed filming the stop-motion animation. We used Legos, which are good animating tools. Also, the sound effects made the movie come to life.” — Spencer

“I loved making the props because we got to be creative with different materials.” — Noah

“My favorite parts were building the set and editing our movie.” — Sam

IMG_0341“Sam was so excited to get to camp everyday and continue the filmmaking process. He didn’t even realize how much he was learning along the way. And the fact that he now knows how to use the iPad to make movies is priceless. Also, such a great idea to include the mentors. Sam loved working with Jaren! I would HIGHLY recommend this camp to any parent with a creative, intelligent child!!” — 5th grade mom

IMG_0362“I loved being a mentor for the kids and how they were deliriously happy because they could be as creative as possible. Ms. Ziff’s great to work with and completely thorough.” — Kenneth, student mentor

“I liked being a mentor because the kids are just so unique and have such different personalities.” — Sarah, student mentor

IMG_0631“I liked creating stories and editing because I love being creative. I can’t wait to be a mentor next year!” — Jordan

“Jordan was excited to come to camp each day and begged to stay late. He’s already planning to come again next summer!” — 6th grade mom

“The creativity was wonderful. I loved that each child learned all aspects of moviemaking. Evan now comes home focused and excited to do more, even after six hours of camp!” — 4th grade mom

IMG_0335“Kai had a blast…and he wasn’t swimming or surfing, so that is amazing! Great class!” — 4th grade mom

“Loved the camper-to-mentor ratio.” — 6th grade mom

“Jacob came home each day more excited than the day before. We will be back next year for sure!!” — 5th grade mom

IMG_0371“Connor was so excited and energized to go to camp!” — 4th grade dad

“The Tabletop Moviemaking course was great – curriculum, snacks, mentors were wonderful. We think you are awesome and look forward to future classes!” — 6th grade mom

 

“We liked making the practice video, learning how to use iMovie, working with the teachers, and sharing our work with other kids for their advice.” –- Noah (11) and Gabriel (8)

 

 

“Bella had a wonderful time at the camp and implements everything she learned for her everyday computer activities since then!” – 6th grade mom

 

 

“I loved that my son got exposed to writing from a story-telling perspective, and the digital media aspect was a bonus.  The culmination project was wonderful in that it was very personal and moving – not only my son’s because he wrote about my mother, but the other stories were equally moving, even though they were completely unknown to me.” – 5th grade dad

 

“What I loved about the advanced workshop were the fun and excited teachers, the new and sophisticated techniques and info offered, and the exuberance of my fellow workshop-mates.” – Kenneth (13)

 

 

“Vanessa and Patrick are enthusiastic, focused, talented, inspiring and fun. The creative environment they set up for the workshop fully engages the digital storytellers. The projects are thought provoking, worthwhile, heartfelt and soar with imagination.  Not only is it enjoyable for all involved, it is a workshop that develops and expands the storyteller’s narrative and technical skills. I particularly love the diversity of choices the storytellers make in the way, how and why of their subjects and narratives.”  – 7th grade mom

 

 

“Digital Storytelling Workshop is a rare program that combines writing skills with digital media. My fifth grade daughter made a documentary about the slaughtering of harp seals in Canada with a compelling narrative. Its social message was very powerful. On the last day of the program, parents were invited to a special viewing of the students’ completed work. I was so impressed by how heartwarming and poignant everyone’s finished project was. It was evident that kids put much efforts and time creating their digital stories and had fun doing it! I was also amazed by how dedicated Ms. Ziff and Mr. Kieffer were. They both worked long hours with the children and stayed late after the dismissal time. This is one summer program that is a MUST for all grades!!!” – 5th grade mom

 

“The camp was a wonderful experience and very cutting edge. The current trends with digital technology make this experience so rewarding and forward thinking. Thanks again so much for supporting the boys and providing them a great learning experience!!! Will you have a parents session?!”– 6th grade mom

 

“I appreciate and value everything from concept to the experience and final outcome of the digital storytelling workshop. I feel strongly the experience itself is the most worthwhile. It gives me both insight and a new perspective into my own storytelling skills. I am proud of my completed film and am grateful of the journey I took making it. I especially value my teachers: Ms. Ziff and Mr. Keiffer. I like their approach to the material, in particular asking each student to incorporate their own poetry and personal letters into their projects. I was grateful in how the teachers positively and effectively guided and influenced my work, how they skillfully interacted individually with each student, and how they always respected everyone’s point of view while they were giving us their valuable and constructive criticism concerning the narrative and technical aspects of all of our projects in the workshop. Also, I think it is fun looking at everyone’s work. I enjoy seeing everyone’s creative approach to their subjects as well as learning more about the subjects themselves who I found extremely interesting.” – Kenneth (12)

 

“As a parent, this workshop was so terrific in so many ways. Firstly, it sharpened and extended Kenneth’s story telling skills. Secondly, it gave him a tangible piece of art he created himself from beginning to end detailing the life experience one of his most favorite people. Thirdly, he worked creatively, productively and with gusto experimenting and pushing his own ideas and imagination, seeking the advice and critique from his fellow students as well as his remarkably talented and knowledge teachers. Lastly and most importantly, Kenneth experienced the joy and freedom of creating art itself. I recommend this workshop wholeheartedly. Your child will reap the rewards of confidence and creative prowess earned by exploring the process of great storytelling designed by Vanessa Ziff and Patrick Keiffer.” – 6th grade mom

 

“I was very impressed with Kenneth’s film about me. Not because it was about my life, but because it was so cleverly thought out and put together. The way Kenneth told my story was remarkable. He gave it a great deal of thought, effort and creativity. It was very professional. I am 90 years old and many of the younger generation of my family do not know much about my life but are curious of what I have lived through and of my experiences. Kenneth’s DVD was the perfect answer to all of my relatives questions about what I did in my life and what I thought about things back then and now. I love Kenneth very much and was honored he wanted to do his project on me. When I look at the finished product, I cannot only see the skill he has at telling my story but I can also see the love he has for me.” — Patricia (subject of Kenneth’s first film)

 

“I loved that the workshop combined writing with technology. It actually sparked an interest in starting my own business. I feel like I learned a lot without being under the pressure to perform.” –Jeremiah (11)

 

 

 “Sophie loved Digital Storytelling. She had a fun while working on her writing with the best writing teacher in the world, Vanessa Ziff, and she really enjoyed learning more about the digital media options and working on bringing her stories to life.  It was a great experience and the perfect amount of hours per day and the length of the camp overall was good too. Keep up the great work!” – 6th grade mom

 

“What I loved was that my son was able to express himself through a new medium that he had not had experience with prior to the class.  As we know, stories can be told many ways– beginning historically with the purely oral tradition, or in song, or through a combination of words, music and visual images. While I would love him to continue his creative writing in the traditional manner ( i.e. short stories or other written format), I am also excited at what the future holds for him in digital or audiovisual storytelling.  I think for him it was not as much as an educational experience as it was fun!” – 6th grade mom

 

“The boys loved actually creating a wonderful story they crafted from scratch. They liked the actual process of researching, writing and organizing the story. They truly enjoyed learning about the process and interacting with the other students.” – 6th grade mom

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