Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Integration, Integration, Integration (Pt.1)

A conversation today reminded me that the main purpose of this site was to discuss and share ways of joining up a somewhat fractured curriculum, through creating digital media  (Digital Glue...OK)
Whilst teaching film making as a freelance, I was frustrated by rarely having the time to watch and discuss films. It just seems to make sense to teach reading and writing film at the same time, so that each experience is enriched by the other.
I mentioned below (Paper Publishing) an article for Teach Primary I'm writing. Initially Joe Carter, the editor, wanted a "box" to summarize the use of framing. Both Cary Bazalgette and I were unhappy with the idea - it would over-simplify a complex area. So there was, potentially, a standoff between a battle-scarred general of the media education world (Cary) and a time-pressed editor with a very general readership and house style to consider (Joe). I was hiding behind the sofa.
After a night's sleep (often the the best resort when needing a compromise), the answer that arrived was simple: watch films to see how other film makers use framing. All Joe needed then, was an attractive activity that might draw his browsing readers into reading the whole article.
I suggested that a good activity to help children focus on framing, prior to making a storyboard, was to: watch a short film, pausing occasionally to discuss how the next shot might be framed. It's a sort of visual cloze procedure that children are often really good at and enjoy. In the MLC conference video, I mentioned in my last post, David Buckingham talks about Creativity, Critique and Culture (3.59 - 4.36) and Guess the Frame glued the Cs  together: the game allows them to draw on their own cultural knowledge to critique a moving image text in order to create a better storyboard and, ultimately, film.
To be slightly less 'macro' than this, I'll blog about The Black Hole next....