My approach to teaching is heavily influenced by my work as a documentary filmmaker and as an advocate for community and participatory media. I believe it is irresponsible to teach the tools of media production without also teaching media literacy and storytelling. If we are going to make media, we must learn to be responsible storytellers and critical media consumers.
Media production is constantly evolving; the tools, the technology, the audiences, and how we reach them. Rather than ask students to master specific tools, I encourage them to understand the foundation and principles of media production and storytelling, while building the confidence that they can learn any of the tools and answer any of the questions that they face in their work as media producers and storytellers.
The most valuable skill one can possess is the ability to say: I don’t know the answer right now, but I’m sure I can figure it out.
I model this approach by joining my students in learning new tools as they become available.