Remember those good old school days when one of the most exciting events was a performance by the school choir or the end of year play or a dance in the local community hall.
How times have changed.
A typical day for 21st century school children now involves robotics, computer programming and even making movies.
Great Lakes Learning Community students have been busily acting, animating, greenscreening and filming in an effort to pull together its combined film festival, Film by Pebbly.
Film by Pebbly is not a competition, but a celebration of student creativity.
However, prizes will be awarded for the most humorous, best technical and the most creative by guest judges, Kerryl Haire, director of schools, Great Lakes Learning Community, former Great Lakes College senior campus principal, Steven Nicholas and well-known local fimlmaker, photographer and bodyboarder, Shane Chalker
Film by Pebbly made its debut with Forster Public School in 2016 when it showcased 42 movies put together by students and their teachers after a huge amount of professional development to ensure the teachers were well-equipped to teach the children how to produce films.
The night was so successful that there was standing room only in a 750 seat auditorium.
The parents and community were enormously impressed by the talents of their students.
Spurred on by the success of the project former Forster Public School principal, Rick Clissold, and staff then decided to extend it to all schools in the Great Lakes community.
As a result, this year a number of primary and high school students have entered films into the festival.
Seven primary and secondary – Forster, Hallidays Point, Bungwah, Tuncurry, Pacific Palms, Wingham, and Great Lakes College – are participating in the festival.
The festival is already in the process of extending into Taree district schools.
Film-making actually forms a part of our English curriculum now and that has resulted in a growing number of film festivals all over the State.
NSW has led the way in this area and to date has more than 20 film festivals showcasing the film-making skills of public school students.
These festivals began as the brainchild of former Miranda Public School principal, Glen Carter and Film by the Sea founder, Karen Beutler, Glen Carter and Karen Beutler will also be there to celebrate our night with us.
Both students and teachers involved in the film-making get such a huge sense of pride and achievement out of seeing their efforts showcased on the big screen in front of a live audience.
An invitation has been extended throughout the community to get a glimpse of the behind-the-scene efforts of the film-making process at Club Forster on Thursday, September 20 from 6pm to support public education and students in The Great Lakes Learning Community.
Tickets are available through www.trybooking.com/XPRN and are only $8 each or $25 for a family of four (additional children extra).