Many young people believe their generation has important things to say but assume no one is listening. We are committed to giving them the tools to make their voices heard.
Adobe Youth Voices' mission is to empower young people to Create with Purpose. This challenge to young people and educators is intended to foster a more intentional strategy for media making, one that is purposeful, designed to have impact and effect change. The collected resources shared on the Adobe Youth Voices Essentials website illustrate a number of ways to make purposeful media, defined by a set of criteria that embody the philosophy of "Create with Purpose."
This challenge to young people and educators is intended to foster a more intentional strategy for media making, one that is purposeful, designed to have impact and effect change. The collected resources shared on the Adobe Youth Voices Essentials website illustrate a number of ways to make purposeful media, defined by a set of criteria that embody the philosophy of "Create with Purpose."
In all corners of the world, the imperative to improve student learning is clear. When technology is used to foster collaboration among youth and to enable them to express their views on topics important to them, learning becomes more relevant and students more engaged. They can explore their views in-depth, gaining new insights and creating work that can change their lives and the lives of others.
The Adobe Youth Voices program is built on research showing that motivation and engagement are prerequisites for learning. Student-centered teaching makes connections to the real lives and everyday experiences of students. As a result, they are drawn into the learning process and compelled to take ownership of their learning. In Adobe Youth Voices, young people employ video, multimedia, digital art, web, animation, and audio tools to explore and comment on their world, leading to breakthrough learning experiences.
Youth and educators are co-creators of knowledge in the Adobe Youth Voices model. Educators and mentors become facilitators of student-generated knowledge, not presenters or keepers of information. Educators participating in Adobe Youth Voices hear directly what young people value and care about, and can base assignments on their concerns. This shift is essential in helping students connect the skills they learn in school with their own life experiences. It also broadens youth awareness of issues, as they discuss with and witness the work created by peers on a variety of topics.
The Adobe Youth Voices program and resources have been crafted to carefully respond to the needs of young people, educators, and the communities they serve, with a number of very targeted, intentional outcomes. These outcomes were developed collaboratively with the EDC evaluation team, and reflect our best collective thinking on results achieved through these kinds of collaborative, youth-centered, media making experiences.
to the makers and audience
an intended audience and impact
clear point of view or specific perspective
but also educator-facilitated
evident in style and content
derived and led by youth questions
effective use of tools and techniques
When youth create with purpose, they are driven by their own questions, asserting their own perspective, and making intentional choices about their media tools and process to create a work that will be meaningful to the audience.
From the beginning of the creative process and along the way, educators can guide young people toward topics of personal and community relevance. Find materials to support youth in creating with purpose within Essentials, including project examples, stories, and curriculum.
Youth media making gives young people the opportunity to build vital skills and express their unique perspectives on the world around them. Youth media as a practice is fundamentally project-based learning—a creative process in which young people formulate media project ideas and themes, plan their production, review their work and the work of others, and share their original work with an audience in hopes of effecting change. Engaging young people in this way takes advantage of the media-rich environment in which we now live.
A movement or a field? A process or a product? Youth media is all of these and may look different depending upon where you live and the medium that is used. All over the globe, young people are now gaining the access and the means to create, construct, or produce powerful media work in their own voice and from their own experience. However, youth media is not only a product, but also a process that engages young people in critical analysis, social activism, collaboration, and leadership. It is a movement owing much to artistic, social, political, cultural, and educational movements. It is informed by progressive educational practice, youth development, and grassroots activism.
As you embark on perhaps your first effort to facilitate youth media making, know that you are a part of a larger community of artists, teachers, educators, and youth leaders who have placed value on youth media both as an activity and as a practice. For more than 30 years, youth media activities have integrated constructive techniques that are ideally suited for engaging youth in explorations of personal and community issues while at the same time cultivating technical and cognitive skills. Youth media organizations have been highly effective at supporting the creation of unique, independent media that speaks for youth interests and issues. The work is exciting and innovative and reflects the diversity, creativity, and determination of young people who are eager to tell their own stories and make a difference. It is our hope that by integrating Adobe Youth Voices principles into your instructional practices, you will contribute to the continued growth of the youth media field while helping your youth gain skills and a voice in their communities.
What is the value of engaging youth in these activities and how do I convince parents, my administration, and colleagues that this is worthwhile? Young people are inundated with media every day. The statistics are staggering regarding time spent in school versus time spent watching TV, surfing, texting, or blogging. The variety and volume of digital content and the frequency with which young people encounter it is unparalleled. As opposed to a bad influence and a distraction, Adobe Youth Voices educators approach media as an opportunity for engagement and as a powerful tool for developing young people’s 21st century literacy, critical thinking, and storytelling skills.
Today's education and employment landscape requires a new skill set for full participation. Young people need to blend technical skill, collaboration, and academic accomplishment to truly excel. Employers seek workers who are innovative, adept at multitasking, and able to analyze and integrate diverse sources of information. Youth media and technology programs employ a distinct and vital set of practices that, when adopted by the broader education and youth development community, truly expand young people’s opportunities.
Adobe Youth Voices strives to provide opportunities for young people to be the creators and producers of their own media messages, thereby creating their own independent and alternative work. As youth create, they are learning both the strengths and limitations of each media form. As their ideas transform into media works, they transform into literate, active participants in society.
The Adobe Youth Voices program, including the materials and training strategy shared on this website, has been developed in partnership with Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC). EDC offers youth development professionals and educators comprehensive services and resources for using media and technology tools to create exciting learning environments. EDC's approach to professional development is rooted in years of collaborative work with schools,
community organizations, and educators designing, implementing, and evaluating ways to use new technologies to enhance learning. EDC assists the Adobe Foundation in all aspects of the Adobe Youth Voices program, such as partner support, training design, community management, and materials development. The program materials draw on numerous sources, including existing Adobe and EDC publications as well as the work of our partners and other leaders in the fields of youth media and education.