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Creating a Storyboard with a Script

Last Updated: Apr-30-2010

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Developed By

  Moira Woods

Lesson Title

  Creating a Storyboard with a Script

Length of Lesson

  Two Weeks

Lesson Unit

  Video Production





Michigan Content Expectations



  Storyboard and Script



Copies of American Film Institute's storyboard and script


Copies of American Film Institute's Project Evaluation Rubric

Samples of former students' work


Recommended: Post "Big Ideas"

Write on whiteboard:  Essential Questions





Unit Abstract:  Students work collaboratively to produce a film for review by their peers and teacher.  This nontraditional format for learning helps students to think and communicate through a visual medium rather than just by using the printed word as a means of communicating.  while students are learning how to write a script, create a storyboard, incorporate different camera shots, how to block, and how to shoot with good camera angles they also learn how to analyze and revise their work.


Big Idea(s)



  • If you fail to plan - you plan to fail! Quote by: Don Bluth
  • Pictures tell a thousand words
  • Written and drawn details are essential tools for communicating well

Essential Questions



  • Why is it important to know who your audience is when creating a story?
  • Why are the elements of a story important when creating a story?
  • Why does the audience need the story told in sequential order?
  • Why are details so important to a story?

Learning Objectives



Students will be able to:
Create a script and storyboard that includes the following criteria:
1. a specific genre
2. audience description
3. story title
4. a detailed visual, (storyboard) with written directions and actors lines, (script) for each video shot
5. film shot written for each video shot
Revise and edit their script and storyboard using the following criteria:
1. project title is written at the top of the paper
2. story content has a beginning, middle and end
3. story content is in sequential order
4. a film shot that compliments each video shot
5. all details are included in the script and storyboard
6. correct grammar, ie. parenthesis around script directions and correct spelling

Summative Assessment



AFI Screen Education Project Evaluation Rubric
A – 4 Stars
Story = The story is very clear and interesting. The story has a beginning, middle and end. Excellent; no room for improvement.
Storyboard = Storyboard is easy to read, and all elements for the shot are clearly described.
Camera work = Uses four or more camera angles. Shots are framed and well lit. Camera movement is smooth and steady, using a tripod.
Acting = Actors create believable compelling characters who enhance the film. Actors clearly know their lines.
Editing = Film has transitions, music, titles and credits. Editing choices all work to create a distinctive flow and flavor.
Production Values = Film uses story and period appropriate costumes, props, locations and sets.
B – 3 Stars
Story = The story is clear. The story has a beginning, middle and end. It holds the viewer’s attention.
Storyboard = Storyboard is mostly eaty to read, and all elements for the shot are described.
Camera work = Uses three or more camera angles. Shots are framed but sometimes too light or dark. Camera movement is mostly smooth but needs a tripod.
Acting = Actors mostly stay in character and communicate the story. Actors mostly know their lines.
Editing = Film has transitions, music, titles and credits. The film sometimes struggles to have a continuous flow or tone.
Production Values = Film uses costumes and some attention is paid to accurate propes, locations and sets.
C – 2 Stars
Story = the story is difficult to follow at times, but the general ideas were presented. Struggles to keep the viewer’s attention.
Storyboard = Storyboard is difficult to read and doesn’t clearly describe the shots.
Camera work = It uses two or three camera angles. Shots are light or dark and or zoom in and out. Camera movement is shaky and unsure at times.
Acting = Actors sometimes struggle to remember their lines and create believable characters.
Editing = Film has an incomplete feel with no transitions or music, just different clips put together.
Production Values = Film minimally uses costumes, props, locations and sets.
D – 1 Star
Story = The story is not clear. The story has no beginning, middle or end. It needs major improvements.
Storyboard = Storyboard is very hard to read and does not clearly communicate filmmaker’s intention.
Camera work = Uses one or two long continuous shots. Lighting is bad. Camera movement is distracting and shaky. Camera zooms in and out without warning.
Acting = Actors do not succeed in creating believable characters and distract from the film by either not knowing their lines or by looking into the camera.
Editing = Film has no editing done whatsoever. Raw,imported video in no particular order.
Production Values = Film does not use costumes, props and sets at all.

Resource(s) available for this section

Lesson Opening

Lesson Opening:
** Students will view and discuss videos from former students. They will critique what works well and what doesn’t work well, and why. After viewing the first video, which will be an exemplary example, we will discuss what constructive criticism is, its goal, and its guidelines for guaranteeing that we use it. 
Students will practice using constructive criticism to discuss the rest of the video samples.  
(1 class period)

Lesson Opening Co-teaching Plan

Make sure your students understand that, "Your storyboard will act as a “map” for the production crew to follow while producing the video. Develop a well planned storyboard so production problems will be reduced, the production time will decrease, and so it will assist in the editing and postproduction of the video.
Your script is a key element in completing your storyboards. The information and ideas you develop must be condensed into a written script before you can include the video shots in your storyboard. Remember to include all of the important aspects about the topic, but don’t overwhelm your viewer with the script. Keep the intended audience in mind while you are writing your script. Background music and dialogue should be geared toward the norms of the viewing audience. 
Finally, make sure you take the time to share your storyboard and script with others so they may assist in the revision process. This will help ensure that your production crew will be able to follow your work. But remember the director needs to be able to make necessary changes while filming the video and the video editor needs the ability to edit the raw footage so it becomes a final product that will communicate your information and ideas well."


Possible leading questions:
1. When telling a story what does the writer need to do so the audience can understand the story?
2. What makes a good story?
3. What are the “elements” of a story?
4. Why are “details” so important in a story? How necessary is it to use a lot of details when creating a story?
** Students will read samples of former students’ storyboards and scripts. Next, they will move into groups of three and choose one piece from the three choices. Then they will assign themselves as either an actor or a director/camera operator and figure out how to perform the storyboard/script. The actors do not need to memorize the script, but they need to try and make the character come alive. The director/camera operator needs to figure out and let the actors know how to move while performing each shot. Also, the director/camera operator needs to start exploring where the best camera angle is for each shot.
(1 class period)
Check for Understanding:
** Each group will have a chance to share their work and discuss what worked well and what didn’t and why.
While students are discussing each group’s work, the teacher should bring to light how important it is to speak loud enough and stand so the audience can be a part of the scene. Also, the teacher should make sure students are aware of the importance of camera shots and camera angles.
(2 class periods) 


** Students will receive a copy of “Storyboard Glossary of Common Film Shots” and as a whole class they will discuss when each shot should be used and provide an example using a movie or TV show they have seen.
Check for Understanding:
Students will receive a storyboard/script that has different camera shots written on the first line of each shots script. They will need to draw an example of each shot in the correlating, blank storyboard. 
Students will use the Elmo to share their work with the whole class. 
(1 to 2 class periods)
** Students will brainstorm different genres while a list of the genres is listed on the board. Each genre will be discussed along with examples from TV and movies. Students are encouraged to share with the class which genre they would like to explore and why.
Students will receive a piece of paper that includes a place for their name, hour, story title, genre, audience description and a short explanation of their story. They will complete the paper and be ready to start working on their storyboards/scripts during the next class period.
(1 class period)
Check for Understanding:
** Students will start class by explaining what the title of their story is, a brief description of their audience and a short explanation of their story.
During this time everyone should ask questions and make suggestions on how the creator may make the story better.
Students will then attach several blank copies of the storyboard/script and a list of all of the items they need to include in their storyboard/script. They will begin drafting their first copy of their storyboard/script.
(1 class period)
Check for Understanding:
While students are creating their storyboard/script the teacher needs to continually answer questions and check students work to make sure they understand and are able to continue to create their work. When three students have successfully completed their storyboard/script then they are paired up to read each piece and decide which one they will be videotaping.
(up to 4 class periods)