Pompeii Days – 2012

Roman Names

Missing Persons – Pompeii

A terrible natural disaster has occurred, and people are desperately searching for their missing loved ones! Create a missing persons poster for someone in your 3AC class. Also, create one for the character you are playing in your newscast. The board will be located in the middle of the 7th grade hallway near the office.

Graffiti in Rome

Did you know that the earliest forms of graffiti appeared in Ancient Rome? Take some time during Pompeii Days to make your mark on the graffiti walls. There are walls located between the science rooms and the Humanities rooms and at the end of the hallway near the charging stations.

Examples from Pompeii:
“We two dear men, friends forever, were here. If you want to know our names, they are Gaius and Aulus.”
“Lovers are like bees in that they live a honeyed life”
“A copper pot went missing from my shop. Anyone who returns it to me will be given 65 bronze coins (sestertii). 20 more will be given for information leading to the capture of the thief.”
“O walls, you have held up so much tedious graffiti that I am amazed that you have not already collapsed in ruin.”
“If anyone does not believe in Venus, they should gaze at my girl friend”

Tech Help with Mrs. DeCardy

1. Planning, planning, planning, planning

Write your script, select your shots, document your source and THEN you are ready to start filming.  Use this Three Column Planning Table to get organized.  If you are organized, filming will be much smoother.

2.  Choose your media

Have these organized BEFORE you start filming.  You have three choices for your media:

  • Still images taken from the internet – organize them in one Album in iPhoto.
  • Still pictures that you have drawn and scanned to make digital.  These will be your background through greenscreening.
  • Background movies that you can report on with Picture in Picture or that you can place yourself into through greenscreening.

3.  Downloading YouTube videos

In Firefox:Screen shot 2010-12-13 at 1.33.10 PM

  • Get the Video Download Helper AddOn here and install it.  Remember restart Firefox after you have installed it.
  • Let the video fully load and then click the red/yellow/blue ballon and Download.  It will be an flv file.
  • Open the flv file in MPEG Streamclip and export the movie as a Quicktime (mp4 file).

In Safari

  • Let the video fully load in the browseractivity
  • Go to Window>Activity and find the largest MB file listed under the YouTube window.  Double click it to save.  It will be an flv file.
  • Open the flv file in MPEG Streamclip (you all have it on your computer) and export the movie as a Quicktime (mpeg-4 file).

4.  Test the sound on your computer.

System Preferecnes>Sound>Input:  adjust the slider so that the input level is about 2/3 of the way up.

Screen shot 2010-12-13 at 1.08.05 PM

5.  Turn on Advanced Tools in iMovie

iMovie>Preferences>Show Advanced Tools

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6.  Get iMovie Set Up

  • Start a New project:  File>New Project>Aspect Ratio 4:3Screen shot 2010-12-13 at 1.44.09 PM
  • Import Quicktime movies you have downloaded:  File>Import>Movies
  • Place Photos in project and set a general extended time for photo.
  • Place the Photos and Movies in the order of your script.

7.  Film with the greenscreen

  • Restest your sound – depends on microphone being used
  • Ensure good lighting

8.  Edit with greenscreening

Take the video of you with the greenscreen from your “bank” and drag it on top of the photo or video in the edit window of iMovie.

Screen shot 2010-12-13 at 1.53.20 PM

Screen shot 2010-12-13 at 1.53.44 PM

9.  Edit with Picture in Picture

For Picture in Picture, place the video you are reporting about on top of the video of you reporting.

Screen shot 2010-12-13 at 2.05.19 PM


Humanities Commercial
The possibilities are endless. Think about the topic you wrote about and presented before break. Make a commercial that would be useful and relates to your area of expertise.

Science Commercial
Some possible Mad science ideas to get you started, any other great ideas are welcome!

1)    Misconceptions in science

  1. Blood letting with leaches to cure the bad blood,
  2. The earth is the center of the universe and our sun and everything else revolves around it,
  3. There are 4 known elements: Earth, Air, Fire, Water.

2)    Advancements to Science

  1. Architectural wonders – How were they built
    1. i.     Coliseum
    2. ii.     Aqueducts
    3. iii.     Heated Baths
  2. First medical textbook – lots of observations from wounded soldiers and gladiators
  3. Science used in warfare
    1. i.     Siege tactics: Catapult, Ballistae, Scorpios, Onager
    2. ii.     Infantry tactics

Math Commercial
Choose to complete one of the following:

1.)    Slave sale.  With the currently developing natural disaster, there is an incredible discount on slaves!  You must:  pose original price, quote one price for a male and a female slave, suggest percentage discount, show bartering in action, have subsequent improved percentage discount, show new price, (offer a further discount for multiple orders?), and do it all in Roman numerals.  Your scene will also include an accurate depiction of a roman abacus, monetary units used at the time, and accurate (research this!) slave prices.

2.)    Coliseum madness.  The Coliseum was started in 72 AD under the emperor Vespasian.  In 79 AD, it is just about complete and the grand opening is just around the corner!  Scale replicas (lawn ornaments!) of the Coliseum are all the rage.  You must:  present a scale model of the Coliseum with a minimum of any five parts presented to scale.  Your presentation will include the original measurements of these five parts, the scale you used in your building, and the final size of the five parts on the model.  Your measurements should be in time appropriate unit (meters were not in use at the time…) Your scene could be a commercial for a lawn ornament, paper weight, or other memento…

Fun Commercial
Can be about any topic related to Pompeii!! Be creative and have fun with this one.

Pompeii Details

Pompeii Days

Picture 1

What it is?
Travel back in time to document one of the most devastating natural disasters in history. Using  all your math, science, humanities talents combined with all your creativity, tech skills, and musical ability, students will create a newscast from August 79 AD.

Why are we doing it?
Pompeii Days tie in subject matter and skills from all three cores as well as skills from your specials. Students will have the opportunity to collaborate and work together as a team to complete a product they can be proud of.

When will we be working on this newscast?
Starting Tuesday, January 10, you will be meeting in your 3AC class during core time. We will spend three days planning and preparing for our video and two days filming. There will be a film festival and awards ceremony on Thursday, January 19.

What guidelines does the newscast need to follow?
– 1 video per 3AC class
– 12 minutes maximum (10 minute newscast plus four 30 second commercials)
– Everyone has an on-screen and off-screen responsibility


More Student Examples:



Picture 1

Example of a real newscast:


Example of a student Pompeii newscast:


Friendly Letter

Friendly Letter rubricDid you know that what we call Israel today was once a part of the Roman Empire? You will be writing friendly letters to students currently living in Israel. Your pen pals attend the American International School in Israel (AIS).  They have spent a lot of time writing letters to you, and now it’s your turn to write back.

Follow the FRIENDLY LETTER GUIDELINES and write a 5 paragraph letter.

  1. Introduction
  2. Life in Shanghai & China
  3. Life at school (SAS)
  4. Life with family and friends
  5. Conclusion

Use the rubric at the right as your guide for scoring. Your letter should have a strong “voice,” clear organization and be free from mistakes.

Due Date:  Monday 1/9/12

Address to use for SAS:

Shanghai American School – East Campus

Shanghai Links Executive Community

1600 Ling Bai Road, San Jia Gang

Pudong New Area

Shanghai, China 201201