Osaka, Japan – Panasonic Corporation today announced the seven finalist schools representing seven countries for the Panasonic Kid Witness News (KWN) 2015 Global Contest. The Grand Prix winner will be selected from among them and announced on August 26 at the KWN Global Awards Ceremony in Singapore. This is the first global awards ceremony to be held in Southeast Asia.
KWN is a hands-on video education program that Panasonic operates as part of its efforts to support education of future generations and is currently being promoted in 19 countries and regions. The company provides video cameras and other equipment for video productions to elementary and middle schools participating in the program. The KWN program is also a competition that honors the video works created by children every year. To produce videos, students choose a theme on their own and handle everything from planning and scripting to filming and editing. Currently, some 5,000 children and teachers around the world are taking part in the program. The program, which began in the United States in 1989, celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, and more than 170,000 children have participated to date.
This year's KWN Global Contest saw 553 schools from 19 countries and regions take part in the program by submitting five-minute videos. Under the broad theme of either communication or ecology, the videos focused on issues closely linked to children's lives through the eyes of children, such as the impact and interactions through social media, environmental issues, earthquake disasters and interactions with family members or physically challenged individuals. Synopses of the seven Grand Prix nominees are shown on the following page.
This year's seven finalist videos can be viewed on the official website for the KWN Global Contest 2015 at: http://www.panasonic.com/global/corporate/kwn/contest2015/
Summary of the seven finalist videos:
(Listed by country in alphabetical order)
|Country/Name of School Video Title||Theme Category/Synopsis|
|1||Beijing Haidian Wanquan Primary School||Communication: A girl, who lost her mother, lives with her father, stepmother and stepsister. She feels she doesn’t belong to the family as no one celebrates her birthday. The video appeals the importance of providing children with love and affection of the family.|
|2||Secondary School Isernhagen||Communication: This documentary focusing on a traveling circus family shows their unique lifestyle, different from that of ordinary people, through daily lives of circus performers and their children, and backstage scenes.|
|Living Differently - Circus Mulan|
|3||Nakoso 1st Junior High School||Communication: Fukushima is still under the influence of Great East Japan Earthquake that hit the area four years ago. Middle school students in the region learn the importance of connecting with others through participation in a charity relay marathon in Tokyo and activities to support Fukushima.|
|Run! Nako-ichi Run!... for Fukushima|
|4||Benoni Secondary School Papar, Sabah, Malaysia||Communication: A teenage girl gradually gets addicted to taking selfies with her mobile phone, spending many hours every day. That leads to a drastic change in her personality, then results in an incident. The video conveys a message that you should accept the way you are, not how you look in photos.|
|JUST CLICK IT|
|5||Clementi Town Secondary School||Communication: The video shows interviews with students and college professors, exploring how people perceive their self-worth through their persona on social media. It warns against putting too much focus on social media. The video combines animation and live action.|
|6||Montfort College||Communication: A visually impaired girl attends a non-special-needs school and, while worrying about burdening other students, she overcomes struggles at school and eventually accepts herself and achieves academic results with her friends’ support.|
|7||Val Verde High School||Communication: A teenage girl goes through a mysterious experience while falling in love with a boy whom she met through SNS. The video brings awareness to the dangers of friendship social networking sites, with which many teenagers are obsessed.|
|FACE TO FACE|
KWN got its start in 1989 in the U.S. as a hands-on video education program supported by Panasonic North America, which supplied video cameras and editing equipment to public elementary and middle schools to make news programs from the perspective of children. The program was subsequently expanded on a global scale. At present, 553 schools from 19 countries and regions participate in the program.
KWN is designed to foster creativity and presentation skills among young students. Supervising teachers cite further merits of the program such as a heightened awareness of the environment and the community as well as development of team skills among participants through the process of creating videos. The global network of KWN schools also provides a platform for international exchange among KWN students.
19 countries and regions participating in KWN:
(Countries listed in alphabetical order)
|North America||Canada, United States|
|Central and South America||Chile|
|Europe||Austria, Czech Republic, Germany, Slovakia|
|Middle and Near East||Iraq, Lebanon, United Arab Emirates|
|Asia||China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam|
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