Windows Movie Maker is really easy to use as long as you have video already in a format that it accepts. For a list of these click here. The easiest way to create a video in one of these formats is to use Movie Maker itself to do so. If you want to get out a bit there are other ways to make video that are easy too, just follow the advice below. Or don’t. See if I care.
In Movie Maker
In the pane on the left-hand side of the Movie Maker interface (if you have a webcam, and on the laptops you do) there is a link at the top of it that says something like ‘Create a video using something-or-other’. When you click this it will run a little wizard and open a window where you can record from the webcam. Once you have finished and click the bottom of the screen it will automatically dump this into Movie Maker ready for you to work with.
If you are using a desktop the process is the same but you will need to attach a webcam to your PC if it doesn’t already have one.
If you want to take your filming to the field, you will need a camera. The best ones to use at the school are the black, digital Canon PowerShots. These can be borrowed from the library. The advantage of these over the Kodak ones is that they create a movie in .avi format which is supported my Movie Maker.
To get videos off these things (in my experience) you just plug it in to your laptop and it’ll start a wizard and do it itself. Once you have done that, find it using the import video link in Movie Maker.
I wouldn’t start from here
What you don’t want to do is record something using the school’s video cameras. These will not talk to the laptops and, once you have created a DVD with them it’ll be a nuisance to try to convert it to anything that Movie Maker will recognise. If you have created a DVD, the best thing to do is throw it out and start again (which I have done for you Simon. You’re welcome).