Workshop Descriptions

Real to Reel: Understanding Documentary Film and How It Can Be Used In Your Classroom

Session 3: Grades 3–5

Digital media is a powerful to in the classroom, telling your own story is a power tool to humanity. The Utah Film Center's Education Team of Leslie Means and Mariah Mellus are pleased to share with you Real to Reel, a presentation for 3rd-5th grade classrooms that focuses on various aspects of documentary story telling. While exploring filming techniques, we'll discuss how these techniques affect our perception of the content, and try our hands at conceptualizing and creating story boards for your own documentary film. 90 minute presentation, 45 minute instruction 45 minute hands on activity.

Mariah Mellus

Mariah Mellus is writer, educator and connector, connecting people with causes and causes with resources. She first worked for the Utah Film Center as a Community Liaison and Outreach Coordinator, creating events that related the Utah Film Center’s programming with that of other community organizations. Over the past decade, her work has evolved to reflect her early childhood development background and her passion for educating today’s youth in the art of digital storytelling.  Currently, as the Community Programs Manager of the Utah Film Center, she designs and curates the Tumbleweeds Film Festival workshops, continues to build a strong community network around independent film and engages students across the Wasatch Front by bringing films, filmmakers and digital storytelling strategies into Utah classrooms. Committed to youth, education, culture and community, Mariah serves as the chair of St. John’s Child Development Center, is on the Board of the Utah Cultural Alliance, and is a Senior Staff Writer for the Salt Lake-based SLUG Magazine.

Leslie Means

As education coordinator for the Utah Film Center, Leslie Means has been part of launching film-related programs in Utah public schools, introducing children to animation techniques and documentaries, and arranging field trips for thousands of students to see award-winning films — including a campaign for the documentary “Bully.” She has worked with the Utah Film Center since 2010, when she was a volunteer at the inception of the Tumbleweeds Film Festival for Children and Youth. A lifelong movie fan, Means studied filmmaking at the University of Utah, and has taught film-appreciation courses at The Open Classroom, a co-operative K-through-8 school in Salt Lake City.