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Explore Digital Storytelling and Filmmaking

In this curriculum, we will challenge students to create short films. Participants will explore the planning process for creating a short film from Pre-Production, and Production to Post-production. We will explore the process of telling documentary-style stories on cultures, music, or a social issue. This course will focus on using inexpensive mobile tools and apps, as well as, more extensive filmmaking tools if they are available. We will also compare and contrast how short documentaries differ from short promotional videos. The goal of this project is to construct a short film or PSA on a topic that is important to you.

Throughout the curriculum, we will discuss the process for creating, short documentary films, promotional marketing video projects, and even PSA projects will be highlighted. Making A Brand also offers opportunities for highly motivated filmmakers in our community to join webinars and meet with filmmakers for mentoring and other professional development opportunities.

Projects from filmmakers who participated in the creation of this course like the production team from God Said Give Em’ Drum Machines will be used as examples and referenced along with numerous examples that will be available to watch on our partner site  Students will who complete the course successfully also be provided opportunities to publish their own work on the site.

This is a self-guided course but Educators are encouraged to use the course to learn how to help students utilize simple and inexpensive tools to communicate their ideas effectively and tell meaningful stories in personal ways their peers will appreciate.

Learning objectives

In the course, you will:

  • Learn about effective digital storytelling
  • Analyze how short films can be used as marketing tools
  • Explore the components needed to create a short video message on a specific subject
  • Evaluate the factors that go into creating an effective, high-quality video using inexpensive digital tools like smartphones
  • Create a PSA that can be used as a tool for social change or a promo video to market a project or product


Educators can request licenses for the classroom and facilitation tips and strategy guides along with other resources to enable them to facilitate the lessons in the classroom. Free licenses are available to groups serving underserved areas when a need is demonstrated on a case-by-case basis.


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