boot campDo you see yourself as an Entertainment Reporter?
Or a screenwriter?
Join us for one of our Online Summer Boot Camps

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

  • July 11 - 15: Reviewing Films & Watching the Newest Releases (ages 9-14; ($120)
  • July 18 - 22: Interviewing Talent (ages 9-14; $120)
  • July 11-15 & 18-22: Let's Write A Short Movie Script (ages 11-14; $240)
  • July 25-29 & Aug 1-5: Let's Write A Short Movie Script (ages 15-18; $240)HITN.BOYS.GIRLS
Deadline to Apply: 30 days prior to the start date of each camp.

Reserve a space


WHAT HAPPENS AT CAMP?KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Boot Camp, Reviewing Films






  • Develop vocabulary and criteria to critique and write reviews.
  • Watch, analyze and discuss films.
  • Review film in written and video format daily.
  • Learn how to create videotaped reviews.
  • Learn how to work with a green screen.
KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Boot Camp, Interviewing Talent


  • Learn how and where to conduct research for your interview.
  • Practice interviewing skills with your teammates.
  • Meet and interview a working actor, writer, film critic or other entertainment professional.
Let's Write A Short Movie Script
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  • Work independently and with your team writing a short script.
  • Create a script that KIDS FIRST! will pitch to a filmmaker to produce.

I am so grateful Ethan is part of this magnificent organization. He has learned so much about the entertainment business and has grown as a kid reporter. KIDS FIRST! has helped Ethan to do well in school, it has taught him to be independent and responsible. KIDS FIRST! has given Ethan many opportunities in the entertainment business as well. This organization is definitely a stepping stone to work on different areas of the entertainment business. Martha P., KIDS FIRST! Mom

Gloria Estefan and Ethan




Ethan P. and Gloria Estefan at Vivo Press Event

I appreciate having the opportunity to be part of KIDS FIRST! It has helped me to have confidence to do oral reports at school and it makes it easier to write essays or written reports.  I get to meet celebrities and I also get to watch movie premieres. Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic

KIDS FIRST! has been a fantastic experience for my daughter, Samantha. She improved her writing and learned invaluable interviewing skills. She also was able to interview some well-known actors and filmmakers, which was very exciting.  - Anastasia Goodstein, New York City

KIDS FIRST! Film Critics At Work



Anna Clara B., at work

Advanced Film Critic Camp
(not yet scheduled for 2022)


(Pre-requisite: Film Critic Camp #1 or #2 or a current KIDS FIRST! Film Critic)

  • Develop in-depth analyzing skills.
  • Learn how to improve written reviews and interview scripts.
  • Receive one on one coaching to refine individual on-camera performance.
  • Improve interviewing skills.
  • Refine on-camera skills.
  • Learn how to promote your own reviews and interviews on social media.
  • Learn how to edit your own reviews and interviews.


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

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


Each camp will meet for 2 hours online Monday through Friday from 12-2 p.m. Eastern time (11 a.m. -1 p.m. Central; 10 a.m. –noon Mountain 9 a.m.-11 a.m. Pacific) – so you can join from anywhere.
All camps are filled on a first come/first served basis with a maximum number of 13 campers per class.

Camp #1: KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Boot Camp, Reviewing Films (one week)

July 11-15. $120. We will watch and review films, learn the ins and outs of writing reviews, learn how to videotape our reviews, and work collaboratively with our team members. Afterwards, campers have the opportunity to join the national KIDS FIRST! Film Critics team! You will develop your …

  • Critical thinking skills
  • Writing skills
  • Self-esteem and confidence
  • Ream building skills
  • Vocabulary and grammatical skills
Camp #2: KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Boot Camp, Interviewing Talent (one week)

July 18-22. $120. Pre-requisite Reviewing Films boot camp. Learn how to prepare for and interview talent, whether in person or via zoom. You will practice with other campers, plus have the opportunity to interview one more celebrity guests. Afterwards, campers have the opportunity to join the national KIDS FIRST! Film Critics team! You will develop your…

  • Researching skills
  • Preparation skills
  • On-camera skills
  • Editing skills
Camp #3: Let's Write A Short Movie Script:

(Two weeks) Fee: $240. Short films all start with one small, great idea -- an unlikely hero, a ridiculous world, a surprising situation or a crazy villain can easily inspire a visual story that can be told in ten minutes or less. Learn to write a short movie script!

Join us for live online classes. We have two sessions, one for younger kids; one for older kids. Each camp will meet for 2 hours online Monday through Friday from 12-2 p.m. Eastern time (11 a.m. -1 p.m. Central; 10 a.m. –noon Mountain 9 a.m.-11 a.m. Pacific) – so you can join from anywhere.

  • Ages 11-14: July 11-15 and July 18-22

  • Ages 15 -18: July 25-29 and Aug 1-5

Instructor: Chris Thomas.

Take a look at one of our previous 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.

Chris Thomas is an award-winning screenwriter and a seasoned creative writing instructor who specializes in helping young writers get their stories out of their heads and down on paper. A Senior Visual Strategist, she has written and produced animated educational tools for the national anti-tobacco trials, as well as presentations for the DOJ, the Oklahoma Bombing trial, the FAA, NATO, and NASA. As a Senior Film and Video Producer she is the recipient of three Alfie Awards including the Judges Choice Award, The National Retail Council’s Heineman Trophy and an ITVA award for outstanding Achievement. She served on the Board of Directors for the Boulder Writing studio and most recently, her screenplay, Desert Run, took first place in the Writemovies National Screenplay Competition and finished in the top 10% of the prestigious Nichols Competition. Her work has also been recognized by the New Mexico Film Foundation. Chris holds an MA in Elearning.

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 Advisory Board and works with the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Program. Terry is a certified instructor for the KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Boot Camp and a member of the KIDS FIRST! National Advisory Board.

Dr. Ed Greene serves as VP for Partnerships and Community Development at the 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 has worked at KIDS FIRST! for two years and 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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