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How to make a reading hack video blog

2 September 2015

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Have you ever thought about making your own video blog? Video is a great way to let others know what you care about or about something you’ve been doing and reach a wider audience.

A Reading Hack vlog is a way for you to share an idea that gets others to look at reading in a new way, whether it’s pulling apart two poems and putting them together, re-telling a story in a Flipagram or merging two fairy tales together. If you’re got a great idea for a hack design, or you want to invite others to your hack activity why not create a hack to let everyone know about it?

Watch some vlogs

If you’re looking for more inspiration, check out this example vlog we’ve made that shares the steps to complete a poetry hack:

Check out these vlogs from Zoella, Word Nerds and Holly McNish.

How to make your vlog

Step one: plan plan plan
You may want to brainstorm your ideas in a group, create mood boards on Pinterest, or map your ideas on paper using coloured Post-It notes. Think about what it is you want to do for your hack idea, and get practising! Try out the ideas on others and why not try it yourself, so you get an idea of how easy or difficult it is to complete?

Step two: break it down
After you’ve tested out your hack idea, make a note of the steps you need to go through to complete your hack. Maybe you need to start by finding a blog or photocopying a recipe? Is the next step to tear it up, to record a friend reading it, to turn it into a tweet? Write down a simple step by step guide to your hack.

Step three: think about each step
How can you visually represent the steps in your hack? Do you want to film yourself talking about it or doing it? Do you want to hold up placards that detail the steps? Maybe you want to do it all in one shot, or write it all down and film your hands moving the words? Plan each step of your video, maybe even write a script, so you know what you’re doing before the cameras start rolling.

Step four: film it (obviously)
You may have a camera or an iPad you want to use, but mobile phones are just as good and in fact easier to hold if you’re filming a selfie! Remember to think about your audience; don’t make the video too long (about 1 to 3 minutes is plenty), make sure background noise is kept to a minimum and the scene is clearly shot. You may want to edit your footage afterwards; there’s a great free editing feature on YouTube, but sometimes it’s best to take your whole video in one shot and avoiding having to do lengthy edits. The video setting in Instagram is great for filming small clips of footage in one video, but only lets you film for 15 seconds.

Get involved

Join this hack online here to show us what you’ve been up to.

Upload your vlog to your hack design page or tell us about it on Twitter.