LINDEN, NJ - School No. 4 in Linden will host its second annual Fifth-Grade Film Festival on Monday, April 6, in hopes of building on the great success of last year’s inaugural event.

The gala evening, which starts at 6 p.m., is part movie premiere and part Oscars-style awards show that caps off students’ study of media and digital storytelling. The project highlights the fifth-graders’ creativity in a unique way, while also helping students to develop the collaborative and technical skills needed to lead in the 21st century.

Groups are working ahead of time to create, write, perform, film, edit, and market their short film. Students then gather at the festival with teachers, parents, and community leaders to watch the films and honor each group in an Academy Awards-style event.

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The project was created by technology teacher Mitch Gorbunoff as a way to inspire students to embrace their creativity and passion.

“I’ve always felt that projects like the film festival serve as a great learning tool because the kids have more buy-in,” Gorbunoff said. “What better way to assess if students understand digital storytelling than by having them tell their own story through film.”

Between 60 to 80 people are expected to attend the festival at School No. 4, which is home to over 400 students in Pre-K through Grade 5.

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