Friday, January 20, 2006

DVDs and teaching

I happen to love movies and so I've accumulated quite a few films on video (wot's that grandad ?) and dvds. A few years back I found a way of using them to help me teach. So instead of being a saddo film buff/anorak I'm collecting valuable teaching material. LOL.

Anyway, The idea is that I give my students a film to week to watch. In that way;

1 - They get about 50 to 60 hours of listening practice per year as opposed to the paltry two to fours hours usually provided by course/exam practice books.

2 -The subject matter is more fun. Better they watch Harry Potter than listen to mind numbingly dull discussion on bee keeping in Shropshire.

3 - It's more realistic. Movies come closer to reflecting real life spoken langauage than most of the stuff in their course books.

4 - You get a wide variety of English, both geographically and socially.

5 - Students realise that you don't have to understand every, single nuance in order to get the message. A great confidence builder.

Usually, I choose movies I bought in the UK that don't have subtitles in foreign languages (or at least not in Greek) to ensure "honesty" in my students. For those students who find this overwhelming in the beginning ask them to put on English subtitles to begin with.

What do you do afterwards ?

Write a summary of the plot.
What you liked and disliked
Review as article
Review in the form of a letter to a friend
Ideas for a sequel
Comparison of the film with the book
Find the IMDB review (see user comments section) you most agree with

If you have any other ideas feel free to post them in Comments or -mail me.

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