boot camp


Do you envision yourself as a KIDS FIRST! Reporter?


Set Aside Some Time to Learn Something New
And Train to Join Our KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Team

Dates: register here
  • June 21 THROUGH 25
  • July 12 THROUGH 16
  • August 9 THROUGH 13
Reserve a space

Beginning Film Critics Camp


  • Develop vocabulary and criteria to critique and write reviews.
  • Watch, analyze and discuss films.
  • Examine behind-the-scenes contributors (directors to editors).
  • Review film in written and video format daily.
  • Learn how to create videotaped reviews.
  • Learn how to record and edit your own reviews in front of a green screen.
  • Learn and practice how to interview celebrities online or in person.
  • Meet working actors, writers, producers, film critics and other entertainment professionals.
  • Work collaboratively with your team members.
  • Learn about filmmaking programs that are available to you.
  • Share your knowledge with parents, peers and the public.


My eldest son, Rohan participated in the Boot Camp and has been a part of the KIDS FIRST! team since. It has been amazing watching his confidence in front of the camera grow over the last two years. His teachers have also noticed a huge improvement in his writing ability. Jennifer Foxe, New York City

My son Rami absolutely loved the Brooklyn Boot Camp. He says "it was challenging, but exciting. We got to watch movies and review them in both written and video format. It taught me a lot about the film industry. I would rate it 5 out of 5."

KIDS FIRST! Film Critics On Location



Advanced Film Critic Camp

(Pre-requisite: Basic Film Critic Camp or Enrollment in Media or Performing Arts Program)

  • Develop in-depth analyzing skills.
  • Learn how to improve written presentations.
  • Receive one on one coaching to refine individual on-camera performance.
  • Work collaboratively with other KIDS FIRST! Film Critics.
  • Improve interviewing skills and refine camera skills.
  • Meet and receive feedback from working professionals.
  • Explore the field of digital media, career options and industry trends.
  • Implement modes for social networks and streaming technology.
  • Learn how to shoot on green screen and create video effects in your home studio.
  • Learn how to create professional lighting in your home studio on a budget.
  • Learn how to record and edit your own radio show segment.
  • Visit and tour state of the art post production facility and meet with working professionals.
Digital Media Literacy Day

For Film Critic Campers and Parent or Guardian

  • Bring your own device and learn how to use it appropriately, from focusing, setting it on high resolution, uploading and sample in camera editing, to exporting media.
  • Learn strategies to encourage and support your child as a KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Team Member.
  • Explore various devices, (e.g. camera, hand held microphone, tripod / monopod, etc.) needed to record, edit and upload reviews and interviews.


If you have any questions, please contact our office at 505-989-8076 or email us here.


This workshop does not in any way guarantee the participant employment in the entertainment industry.


Online camps meet via Zoom for one week, Monday through Friday from 12 noon to 2 p.m Eastern Time / 9 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Pacific Time. There is an assignment given each day, which needs to be completed by the end of the day, no later than 5 p.m. local time. It will take approximately an hour to complete.

All camps are filled on a first come/first served basis. The camp fee is $120. To register, click on the big red button to the right.

Is this camp for you? Do you ...

  • Love, really love films?
  • Love talking about the latest films?
  • Envision yourself talking on the Red Carpet?

Learning and Fun Can Be One!

Each day, as you watch and review films, you will be developing your skills in ways that will surprise and delight not only you, but your parents and teachers as well. Skills like:


  • Critical thinking!
  • Critical Viewing!
  • Writing!
  • Oral - through interviews with celebrities on the red carpet or at press junkets
  • Self-esteem as you learn to use your voice!
  • Team building - while working collaboratively with other KIDS FIRST! reporters
  • Vocabulary expansion
  • Listening - when conducting interviews or listening to your coaches
After you complete this camp, you have the opportunity to join the national KIDS FIRST! Film Critics team!

What happens at camp? Take a look at one of our advanced camps...


Ranny.Gerry.KeeferRANNY LEVY
The invasive impact of media on children became the impetus, in 1991, for Levy to create KIDS FIRST! / Coalition for Quality Children's Media, dedicated to promoting and nurturing quality children's media as a vehicle for social change. A former educator, Levy designed an award-winning television series, Kidnetics, for PBS Affiliate, WNIT-TV, produced an ACE-nominated television show (Cable Magazine), and managed an independent film production and distribution company, OneWest Media, selling to national and international markets including PBS, the Discovery Channel and Showtime. Ranny has written two books, "The New York Times / KIDS FIRST! Guide to The Best Children's Videos" and "A Parent's Guide to the Best Children's Videos, DVDs and CD-ROMs" and is a frequent speaker at conferences about children's media.

Terry Solowey has a wide range of expertise in early childhood / elementary education and children’s media. She is a writer and developer of print and multimedia programs with a focus on outreach, curriculum and content development. Ms. Solowey served as Assistant Director of the Sesame Street Preschool Educational Program, as Manager of Outreach for Thirteen/WNET and Program Director for KIDS FIRST! where she continues to serve on the National Advisory Board. Terry works with the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Progam and is a certified instructor for the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Boot Camp.

Dr. Ed Greene serves as Senior Consultant, Educational Outreach and Partnerships at Hispanic Information Television Network (HITN), Brooklyn, NY. Prior to his work at HITN, Ed worked as director of educational outreach for a U.S. Department of Education Ready to Learn Transmedia project.  He has been an instructional leadership coach for principals and  PreK-2 teachers in Detroit Public Schools for Teachscape. Ed was a senior adviser and consultant to Cito USA and its Piramide Approach to Early Learning and director of global outreach for Sesame Workshop. Over his forty-year career, Ed has worked directly with infants, toddlers, preschool children, adolescents and families, as well as in a variety of roles and capacities in the philanthropic, private, public sectors and higher education.  He is a former board member of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, the High/Scope Educational Research Foundation and currently serves on the Boards of the Council for Professional Recognition and KIDS FIRST! / Coalition for Quality Children’s Media.

Angel is the Managing Video Editor for KIDS FIRST! Film Critics. He is a graduate of Santa Fe University of Art and Design with a B.A. in Fine Arts, majoring in Film Production. He also has an Associates Degree in Radio, Television and Media Broadcasting from El Paso Community College. Angel has many years of experience working in film, television and  radio. He originally developed an interest in film and TV when he was in high school where he was enrolled in his school’s weekly news show. After high school he enrolled in a community college and gained skills in lighting, writing and editing. He graduated from Community College in 2013 and, after taking a year off, enrolled in Santa Fe University of Art and Design where he strengthened his skills in lighting, editing, filming and other production areas.  He graduated with honors in 2017. Angel has directed some short films and helped produce others. He wrote and produced a PSA called No Child Hungry, which won an award for best PSA at The Chocolate City Short Film Festival.

Philomena is an artist, educator and advocate of child well-being. Philomena studied Media Technology at Jack Yates High School in Houston, Texas and earned a BA in Moving Image Arts from the Santa Fe University of Art & Design. Philomena has worked directly for the betterment of children since 2007 when she worked as a production assistant and juror for KIDS FIRST! She has worked with children of all ages in preschools, summer camps, museums and juvenile correctional facilities where she teaches video production, photography, theatre, painting and graffiti art, poetry and graphic novels. Philomena is the founder of the non-profit organization, Unlocked Minds, Inc., a programming resource that provides creative outlets, goal-oriented mentorship and professional networks to incarcerated and at-risk youth. Currently, Ms. Salem teaches at the Santa Fe Art Institute, Golden Acorns Camp of Living Arts & Culture, the Garcia Street Club Preschool and a certified instructor for the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Boot Camp.

** This event is subject to cancellation if adequate registration is not received or other unexpected circumstances make it impossible to take place.

All camps have limited enrollment and will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Boot Camp is a project of the Coalition for Quality Children's Media, a national, nonprofit (501-c-3) organization founded in 1991 whose mission is to teach children to become critical media users.


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