Students in the Douglas High School Culinary and Media Arts classes have joined up to offer a cookbook featuring all original recipes.

“The way the cook book came about was Stephanie Robles have been wanting to do this since the school year before last and it took a while to get going,” Media Arts Instructor Mark Silverstein said. “For whatever reason we could not get it together last year but this year we just sat down and started doing it.”

Silverstein’s wife, Maggie Schmidt, is the Culinary Arts teacher at DHS and she, Mark and their students sat down and began working on this project.

“I had three students working on it, Rosa Bautista, Stephanie Robles and Brianda Moreno,” Silverstein said. “That’s pretty much all they worked on the whole year.”

Silverstein said the media arts students did most of the work then when it came time for the recipes and the food design then the culinary arts students got involved providing the recipes.

“We chose the recipes from what they gave us then they started the food styling when we started the photography,” he said.

Silverstein said pre-orders of the cookbook are available.

“They can email me at msilverstein@dusd.k12.az.us,”he said.

Several DHS media arts students recently had a viewing of two music videos, two movie trailers that his classes created, a commercial and a journalistic feature on Angie Hernandez, a math teacher at DHS.

The media arts class just completed its fifth year.

“It has been going great,” Silverstein said. “The advances that have been made from when I first started teaching … now that we have fully embraced it as a media arts class as opposed to a technology class, the whole thing has shifted. It has opened it up for creativity with the kids.”

Silverstein says he has seen the program grow immensely in the last five years and he’s had tremendous support from both Judy Herbert as well as Melissa Rodriguez.

“They helped us get our ability to show and distribute our work out there,” he said. “We did not have a lot of the release forms in place to show our work.”

Silverstein says because of their help his students can now do anything in the community as well as the school district and be okay.

Silverstein taught six classes last year and will teach another six this year.

“This year I will be teaching three levels of media arts,” he said. “I will be teaching an intro class, an advance class and then a software class where we’re working on the adobe suites,” he said. “The students really seem to love it. They get to act, they get to write, they get to direct, do makeup, create props. They do everything you would see on a major film set. … We have all the equipment you would see on a low to medium size budget type of film.”

Silverstein has helped steer some students towards studying photography, journalism, and graphics.

“I have a good handful of students that I expect will enter the industry,” he said. “The great thing about this is it’s really a communications course so whether they go into the industry or not they are learning how to do interpersonal communications because they have to work in teams all the time.”

Silverstein says he’s really proud of what his students have accomplished.

“I’ve seen the growth over the years,” he said. “We are finally at the point where we are turning out film makers who I would feel comfortable with some of them going into the industry at an entry level now.”