Making & Marketing a Bar of Soap – Chemistry Class Infuses #MakerEd, #EdTech, & #DigitalMedia @WeVideo @EDUcre8ive

Written with my colleague, Dr. Celeste McDaniels, who teaches Chemistry.

In our 2017-2018 chemistry class, students took up the challenge of integrating creativity with science and technology by making and marketing unique soap bars, utilizing chemistry and technology skills in our new Discovery Center building. Students began the project brainstorming a unique design for their soap mold and then carving their molds from styrofoam using the vacuum former in the Bullis Innovation and Technology lab (BITlab). After making the soap molds, students used Google Drawings to design labels to decorate their soap box and printed them using the vinyl cutter in the BITlab. After learning more about saponification and the required ingredients for soap making – an oil, fat, and base – students were ready to get in the chemistry lab to make their bars of soap. Finally, student groups wrote a 30 second commercial script to market their soap. In the Digital Media Studio, students were able to film their commercial with a green screen background. With the help of WeVideo, student groups used their creativity to create exciting commercials that marketed their own unique soap bars.

Why We Chose WeVideo for This Project

In an effort to allow all students the opportunity to video edit as part of their high school experience, we have been piloting WeVideo this year. Some of the reasons we looked to WeVideo initially were:

  1. We do so much collaborative work in our classes. Before piloting WeVideo, most students were working in iMovie, which meant that group work was limited to one machine. WeVideo allows students to create collaborative projects, which was an essential requirement in our search.
  2. Since we are a BYOD school, students have a variety of laptop types. Most of our students have Macs, which translated to most video editing projects being delegated to the students with Macs. And since iMovie editing is isolated to one machine, if that student happened to be absent from class, students in that group were left unable to work on their project for the day.
  3. With WeVideo’s new royalty-free asset library, students are able to easily add free-use media content (video, music, images) to their videos.

The soap commercial was a prime example of how we envision creative teachers utilizing WeVideo to further their classroom instruction and make the learning fun. This project introduced students to a video timeline editor and to using a green screen. Our Digital Media teacher helped students learn about the proper lighting, staging, and other essentials for creating quality video content.

Using WeVideo encouraged all students to participate in the project. They used assets from the WeVideo library to add creative backgrounds and soundtracks to their projects. They were able to effectively work in groups and the teacher was able to find all projects in the WeVideo dashboard, eliminating the hassle of sending video files back and forth. To more easily share finalized projects with a public audience, we used the export to Google Drive option in WeVideo. We hope you enjoy some student exemplars below:

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