A Passion for Pathfindering

PATHWAY
Self: Belonging and Responsibility
AGE GROUP
12-14 years, 14-16 years, 16+ years
Anticipate Time
3 hours min
GROUP SIZE
2-5, 5-15
Values
Confidence, Creativity, Enthusiasm, Loyalty, Respect

Synopsis

Pathfinders produce a short video advertising their pathfinder club.

Through participation in this Pursuit, the Pathfinder will:

  • Understand and appreciate the fundamental aspects of advertising
  • Execute the filming and editing of a Pathfinder advertisement
  • Cooperate with a team in the development of the project

Scripture Focus

Memory Verse

John 10 : 10
I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

God has blessed us with all the ingredients for a rich and abundant life. All we have to do is immerse ourselves in it. Take the challenge and run with it!

Preperation

If no Club leader has video production knowledge and skills, another person will need to be asked to present some of this information to the Pathfinders. Specialised help in this activity will really assist the achievement of a ‘professional’ feel in the finished product. However, if there is no such person in your church community available to do this, you may like to explore the option of enlisting help from someone from a video shop. Sharing the nature of the target group and the intent of the activity just may reap professional help without cost! (Don’t forget to give them a card of thanks. See Activity: “Card Campaign”. ) If no such assistance is forthcoming, don’t discard the activity. It can be done as simply as you like!

  • Gather a number of objects which remind you as a leader of different memories of Pathfinder events and happenings from the past. Place these in a box or bag for sharing.
  • Video a number of advertisements, which show a range of advertising styles and angles.
  • Purchase as a prize a big ‘freckle’, big ‘jaffa’ or another oversized sweet.

Outline

  1. Gather the Pathfinders into a group where they are comfortably seated. In a casual way, start to reflect on some of the fantastic experiences you have locked away in your memory as leader of fun Pathfinder events, experiences and happenings which are great to look back on. Casually take the objects you have chosen out of your bag or box and, one by one, reflect on them, their significance and the particular memory they conjure up (Some of the items may be obscure). Focus not only on general experiences but specific humorous or moving happenings your particular club/unit has experienced.
  2. Invite the Pathfinders to share special memories from their Pathfinder experience. Reminisce about the highs, the lows, the challenges conquered, and the feelings of elation at having done it! Initiate a number of ‘Remember when…’ statements.
  3. Divide the Pathfinders into small groups and invite them to identify what, to them, are the best things about Pathfinders. Write the list down on a list on Butcher’s paper.
  4. Invite two Pathfinders to come forward (select two good “talkers”). Seat them on chairs facing each other with knees touching. Tell them that they are going to have a talking competition and try and “outsell” their Pathfinder Club to each other. When you say “go,” each one is going to begin a passionate speech about their Pathfinder club. (Thus both individuals will be talking at the same time). This “speech” will last one minute at which time the rest of the group will vote as to who was the salesman of the moment, ie. who was the loudest! You may then like to present them with the “big freckle” (or other sweet) for them having such a big mouth about their club. Ask: “If we were to advertise our Pathfinder Club to the world, how could we get this list we value – across to our audience?”
  5. Share how you as a group are going to prepare a two-minute video to advertise their Pathfinder Club. Engage in a solid brainstorming session to discuss approaches to such a task. Encourage divergent thinking and outrageous approaches. The more creative the better!
  6. Play your videoed television advertisements, stopping after each one to analyse the approach the advertisements have taken. The set, the atmosphere, the approach… At the end of all the ads, ask:
    • Which ad did you like the best? Why?
    • Which ad had the most unusual selling angle?
    • Did any ad use humour?
    • How many of the ads had music in the background?
    • What was the effect of this?
    • Did any ads use unusual camera angles?
    • What was the effect of this?
    • Did any ad use the element of surprise in any way? If so, how did this affect the appeal of the ad?
  7. Ask the participants to describe their favourite ad. Ask:
    • Why do you like it?
    • Why do you think it works?
  8. Decisions about your advertisement need to be made concerning:
    • A dominant ‘selling point’ of their club and how this concept can be portrayed. (taken from their list)
    • The ‘feel’ of the video.
      • Will it use humour ?
      • Will it have a theme?
      • Will it be an emotionally based ‘snapshot’ or will it give definite information in a documentary style?
      • Will it involve complex editing or will it flow?
      • What style of music will best complement the video?
      • Will it use fantasy or reality?
      • Will it exaggerate for effect or be realistic?
    • Who is our target audience? (Is it the older church generation, whipping up support for Pathfindering ventures, or is it prospective Pathfinders who need to know about our new way of doing things!)
    • Then ask the participants to pretend they’re the viewer and ask themselves What do I currently think about Pathfinders? and What’s in Pathfinders for me? (They must pretend they are not Pathfinders, but rather the average viewer. These questions will be highly significant as they make decisions about the direction of the ad.)
    • Whose viewpoint will be adopted?
    • How can we “show” Pathfindering rather than “tell” about it! Will there be a sense of “story” to the advertisement?
    • Which things on our list of “positives about Pathfinders” will be explored?
    • How can we include humour?
    • What catchy slogan can we use in our ad? (eg. Oh what a feeling! Toyota.)
    • What mistakes do we NOT want to make?
    • Will there be a presenter?
    • Will they relate to the target audience?
    • Remember the winning advertising sequence: Attention/Interest/Desire/Action, ie. Get their attention, keep their attention, create a desire in them to want your product for themselves, create this desire so strongly that they will act upon it! (This exercise could be a great strategy for building up your Pathfinder numbers!) Advertisements tend to appeal to feeling rather than fact. Capitalise on this in your advertisement.
  9. When this task is completed, list the roles required to achieve this exercise. Include such things as:
    • Producer, (General overseer)
    • Director, (directs all details of the filming process)
    • Script Prompter (if necessary)
    • Script Writer Actor/s (if necessary)
    • Props Stunts (if necessary)
    • Cameraman
    • Film editor
    • Lighting person.
      Participants will also need to create:
    • A production plan, involving a flow chart of stages;
    • A time schedule
    • A commitment sheet requiring a pledge to meet established deadlines.
  10. Once the approach and direction of the ad has been decided upon, the filming process should be written up as a Storyboard. This overall plan consists of a series of small boxes in a line, which detail the camera’s angle, subject matter and distance from the action, thus allowing all film shots to be thoroughly prepared. The Director will refer to this storyboard in his / her direction of the filming process.
    Cameraman Tips
    Don’t forget general filming rules:

    • Show it, don’t tell it! Never do with dialogue what you can do with action.
    • Don’t cross the line, ie. Keep the camera consistently on the same side of the action. Pretend the camera is the audience. It sees what they will see.
    • Always plan shot size.
    • Don’t wobble the camera (unless specifically for effect). Control it! If there is no tripod, rest the camera on anything stable – a pillow on any surface will suffice.
    • Consider unique camera angles for effect.
    • Don’t have the sun shining on the lens of the camera or in the actor’s face.
    • Actors, don’t look into the camera (unless specifically for effect).
  11. If this Pursuit is being approached as a ‘serious’ advertising campaign in your local area, it may be beneficial to do some ‘market research’. Outline your concept to a number of individuals from your target group and get their opinion about the appeal of your ad. If it is missing its mark, you may have to rethink your approach.
  12. Search out an opportunity to play the video to your target audience. (A viewing in Church would be a good start!) A Copy of the video can be kept in the Church Library.

Debrief

Reflection
  • What was the most rewarding part of this Pursuit?
  • What was the most challenging part of this Pursuit?
Interpretation
  • How well did your group work together?
  • Was everyone involved?
  • Did you feel you were a valuable part of the task?

Rate the group performance on a scale of 1 – 5:

  1. I enjoyed working with the other members of my group 1 2 3 4 5
  2. I thought other members encouraged me 1 2 3 4 5
  3. I thought our group worked well together 1 2 3 4 5
  4. I found comments about my role from group members useful 1 2 3 4 5
  5. I found comments about my role from group members positive 1 2 3 4 5
  6. I thought all group members did their best 1 2 3 4 5
  7. I think our production was really ___________________ 1 2 3 4 5
  • How do you feel about the finished product?
  • What did you learn about yourself?
Application
  • How can you use what you learned in other situations?