Sonoma County Office of Education

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Five-Minute Film Festival showcases student films

03/18/2015 - The Sonoma County Office of Education held the first annual Five-Minute Film Festival on March 16 at the 3rd Street Cinema in Santa Rosa. The event was an opportunity for students to demonstrate learning in a 21st century context and showcase their work in front of a community audience. To participate, students created short videos—no more than five minutes long—on the theme of “Growth.” They also made movie posters to highlight their films.

Over 110 videos were submitted. A judging panel selected the top 15 films and the 70 students who created them were invited to attend the Festival. The event mirrored the Oscars—students dressed for the occasion, entered the Theatre on a red carpet, and were photographed. Student filmmakers were seated at the front of the theatre and introduced as their films premiered. A panel of celebrity judges provided feedback on the films and gave the students pointers for future work.

Three films earned special recognition:


Among the films by grade 3-6 students, the judges selected Love Grows on You by Gwendolyn Phair, a sixth-grader from Orchard View School, for top honors.
—Teacher: Lisa Loughran


In the grade 7-8 category, Growth by Ben Vandermeer, Andrew Gotshall, and Bella Braga received the judges award. These students attend Kenilworth Junior High School.
—Teacher: Isaac Raya


The audience also had an opportunity to select a “popular choice” film. Growa by Taylor Alcozer and Tristan Angus-Henry, fourth graders at Oak Grove Elementary School, was the popular favorite.
—Teacher: Carinne Paddock


This video was taken at the first annual Five-Minute Film Festival on March 16, 2015. Special thanks to Lucky Knox Multimedia for producing this video recap of the event.


All 110 student videos are available for viewing on the SCOE website. Special thanks to the celebrity judging panel, including Daedalus Howell, Robyn Kopp, Nirvan Mullick, Pete Stringfellow, and Gabe Tuft.

More Information | See the Student Film Entries | Meet the Judging Panel