In one classroom at William C. Jack Elementary School in the Glendale Elementary School District, students do more than go to the movies n they make them.

The students had help from their teacher, Bryce Budoff, who recently won first place in a contest sponsored by Apple Computers. The award was given for a movie he and his students made last year.

Budoff's video, "Helper Jobs," won first place in the K-6 instructional video competition called the iCademy Awards and took best of show among 40 entries from across the country.

The contest was part of the Microcomputers in Education Conference held last month in Tempe.

The movie is a 30-minute instructional video in which students describe and illustrate their assigned classroom "jobs," such as switching on computers for the day, or keeping their peers in a straight line for trips to the playground and cafeteria. Students filmed each other and worked with editing software to complete the project.

In making the mini-movie, Budoff said third-graders learned language arts skills, how to behave on a "movie set" and how to project their voices.

"The kids wrote (and memorized) scripts and story-boarded what they wanted to do for their helper jobs," Budoff said. "It was really great."

Each student's film debut, in which they answered the five "Ws" (who, what, when, where, why), lasted 30 to 45 seconds.

Only a few of Budoff's former students have heard about award, but the 28-year-old teacher hopes to have a reunion with the entire class to present the award.

"That was a wonderful group of kids to work with last year," Budoff said. "I had a two-year bond with them."

A Glendale native and graduate of Glendale Community College and Arizona State University West, Budoff teaches a class of 26 second or third-graders at the primary school. (The class is "looped," with second-graders becoming third-graders in Budoff's classroom, for a total of two years in the same class.)

Instead of being a magic bullet, Budoff said technology is just one more tool for students to use.

"Most of the stuff we do in here is still in the book," Budoff said. "And it's still in whatever our curriculum is. I start from there and I try to figure out ways I can make it interesting, using technology in some form.

"I think (technology) is important; otherwise, I wouldn't do it. But I don't think it's important in everything we do. I think that it's just as important as the overhead projector, the stereo, that kind of a thing. I think computers are a tool that we need to be using."

Budoff said youngsters should be exposed to computers in primary grades, "because they will be expected to use them in fourth, fifth and sixth (grades)."

In addition to bringing technology into his classroom, Budoff touches other classrooms in GESD by sharing his knowledge with teachers in the district through professional development classes he teaches a few times a year.

Budoff sees even more professional development in his future.

"I'm heading way down this path of technology integration, but doing it more with preservice teachers and for teachers already in the classroom who are wanting to learn more," Budoff said.

Budoff is also an ASCOT teacher. ASCOT, which stands for Arizona Classrooms of Tomorrow Today, is part of an international grant through Arizona State University.

ASCOT teachers are role models for their peers, principals and student teachers, who are invited to observe the integration of technology into teaching techniques in the classroom, Budoff said.

Budoff's next professional development teaching assignment will be at the upcoming Way Out West conference sponsored by the Arizona Technology Educators Alliance (AzTEA), scheduled for 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. May 11 at Arizona State University West, 4701 W. Thunderbird Road.