Lethbridge Christian School enters My Parks Pass Canada Video Competition

By Garrett Simmons

Lethbridge School District No. 51

Communications Officer

If all goes well, Allison Overbeeke’s Grade 8 class at Lethbridge Christian School will be in Halifax this June.

That’s the grand prize for the My Parks Pass Canada Video Competition, as Grade 8 students from across Canada have uploaded their videos in an attempt to win what’s been dubbed as Canada’s Coolest School Trip.

The 18 Lethbridge Christian School students have spent months on the project, which features Waterton Lakes National Park, as the contest instructed student from across the country to select a Parks Canada location where they would like to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday.

“It’s the closest park to us and it was the first international peace park,” said Overbeeke, who explained why her class choose Waterton.

The process began in September, and the video was filmed in January, when the entire class made the trek south to the park.

Students were tasked with developing a timeline and storyboard for the video, which included a ton of research on the history of the park. Little by little, the project began to come together. And even though it is only a one-minute video, Overbeeke added her students put in countless hours to produce a polished video submission.

“As a teacher, this is so outside the box,” she said of the skills students utilized. “They’ve learned technology, teamwork and the thought process of putting together a script.”

They’ve also learned the art of promotion, as students handed out 1,800 pamphlets at teachers’ convention last week, reached out to local media and wrote a letter to the Lethbridge Hurricanes, with the hope the school can gain some time on the Enmax Centre video board during a game, to encourage locals to vote for their video.

“It’s not only just the video and taking photos, it’s thinking about the layout of the video, it’s being innovative thinkers and checking off a lot of other boxes,” said Overbeeke. “It’s been an incredible process and it’s really brought the whole class together. To see them really take ownership of this has been great.”

Students spent an entire day in Waterton filming the video, which begins with some outdoor time-lapse photography and a quick segment of a student colouring in a photo of the iconic Prince of Wales Hotel.

From there, the video showcases Waterton hot spots like Cameron Lake and Red Rock Canyon, a variety of park wildlife and photos of students at locations such as the park’s welcome sign and the downtown Wieners of Waterton restaurant.

Students wrestled with what footage would need to be cut, and how many photos could actually be used, as the class created 12 different versions of the video, before a final one was selected.

Overbeeke added students edited video, selected music, developed story boards, completed time-lapse photography, researched park history, designed costumes, acted in the video and provided the voiceovers.

Now, with the video submitted, Overbeeke and her students are playing the waiting game, as voting opens on March 6 and runs until March 24. The school with the most votes will head to Halifax June 5-9, while 10 other prizes are also up for grabs.

Only two students in the class of 18 have ever traveled to the east coast, said Overbrooke, who added a trip to Nova Scotia certainly would be an experience of a lifetime for her class.

“I’ve taught in this school for 30 years, and if I could take this class to Halifax, that would just be the best. We basically need support for people to go online and support Waterton Lakes National Park.”

Once voting opens on March 6, southern Albertans will be able to vote for Lethbridge Christian School by visiting www.myparkspass.ca. Votes can be submitted daily.

Date posted: March 2, 2017