Introduction to video camera functions

Author: Susan Reilly
Lesson Plan:

Lesson Plan #1



Course: Introduction to Video Production


Unit: 1

Lesson Number:  1


Enduring Understanding (Objective): Camera Functions


Essential Questions: Stress the importance of proper camera functions to “get” the best shot.


NY State Standard Addressed:

Standard 1: ELA: Students will read, write, listen, and speak for information and understanding. ( I will have students read from informational text; the manual. Students will read and follow written multi-step directions to accomplish a task.


Standard 1: Art: Understands and applies media, techniques and processes related to the visual arts. Understands how the communication of ideas relates to the media, techniques and processes one uses.


Standard 3: Technology: Technology productivity tools. Students use technology tools to enhance learning, increase production, and promote creativity.


Evidence of Understanding:

Students will come back to the classroom with footage that fits the criteria of the lesson. There will be no technical problems.


Materials required: Camera, Batteries, camera manual.


Student Preparation: None.


Anticipatory Hook:  Having video memories is great fun & nice to have.

                                    Planning saves time.



Procedure - Step by step explanation of Activities/Strategies:

I will go over the camera manual with students explaining different common functions, as well as important pages. For example: Page 6 of the Canon ZR950 manual is a large picture with arrows pointing out the major camera function buttons.

Review the basic camera functions from the manual. This useful resource is good a place to start when trouble shooting a camera malfunction. Power batteries vs. DC on / off switch.


Proper battery installation and charging insures camera power. When the camera is powered on, it is important to check the battery charge time in the LCD monitor, then insert a tape. We will then go over the procedures used if the battery runs out. I will point out where the DC input is housed to recharge the battery. Next we go over modes of the camera, such as VTR vs. Camera. Focus is an important skill for the camera operator. This particular model camera has two different viewfinders. We will use the camera manual as a guide while exploring which view finder works best for students. Other areas covered will include lights, which affix to a camera shoe, external microphone jack and a head set jack.


Break down big ideas.  Plan for the following questions:

Why use the manual and why we keep this resource in the camera bag.

Which pages of the manual are great reference pages?

How to review video shot ensuring you have captured important images.


Activity: Accommodations for student Diversity

Have a check list for students to cross off before shooting. Review checklists a number of times.



When we have 5 minutes left, depending on how far along we got, review material.


Assessment: Students will shoot 1 minute of video to be turned in at the end of the class for critique.


Reflection: Critique footage.