A few years ago, in order to quality video editing, you had to have a a several-thousand dollar computer or editing system.
Nowadays, all you need is:
one of these three operating systems (Windows 7, Linux, or OSX),
a minimum 2 gigabytes of ram (memory prices are quite low),
A video camera or digital camera that allows you to take short movie clips
For the Windows Machines, there is Windows Live Movie Maker. You may need to go to the Microsoft for the free download. There are alternatives, including the more elaborate Adobe Premiere, but for creating a simple classroom movie or home movie, Windows Live Movie Maker should suffice.
If you are using a Mac with OSX or above, you have iMovie. For an additional cost you could by Final Cut Pro a more advance editing program than iMovie.
For Linux, there are several free editors including kdenlive.
While Microsoft, Apple, and Linux video editors do a pretty good job respectively giving you information about their programs on their respective websites here is the basic sequence of what you do when you make a movie. 1. Shoot Footage (a fieldtrip, softball game, child’s birthday party etc....) 2. Connect your Mini DV player to you computer using an open firewire port. 3. Start your movie editing software and allow it to capture the footage into your computer 4. Use the program to cut and copy the footage in a sequence you see fit 5. Add titles and credits and background music 6. Export the movie to a format of your choice. 7. Burn it to a VCD or DVD, send through e-mail, or put on a webserver, including youtube for people to view.