Into Film and BFI launch free MOOC for teachers

Into Film

Into Film is a UK-wide education charity, supported by the BFI with Lottery funding, which puts film at the heart of children and young people's learning and personal development. It offers numerous opportunities for teaching and learning through film including: free film clubs offering access to a diverse catalogue of thousands of films, dynamic curriculum linked and enrichment resources, guidance for filmmaking and film reviewing, training and CPD for teachers, and a free, education-focused annual Into Film Festival for 5-19 year-olds which is the world’s largest youth film festival.

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Education charity Into Film, in partnership with its main funder the British Film Institute (BFI), have launched Teaching Literacy Through Film, a new, free online course running from 25th January 2016. The MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) is the first of its kind in teaching literacy through film. Running over four weeks, the flexible course led by film education experts from the BFI and Into Film, and will examine the debate surrounding film as a vehicle for teaching literacy, alongside recent evidence demonstrating significant improvements in children’s reading and writing through use of film texts.

This course is available on the social learning platform FutureLearn, and will help teachers throughout the UK to learn tried-and-tested strategies for using cinema to raise literacy attainment. It will provide an introduction to the ways in which film and filmmaking can engage pupils through the use of a range of teaching approaches and frameworks, and will demonstrate how the medium can be used to help develop analytical and life skills of children and young people.   

“This course highlights superbly how film can transform the way pupils and students engage with literacy in their learning,” said Simon Pile, assistant headteacher at Anson Primary School, after reviewing the MOOC. “As a teacher the course is packed full of ideas, techniques and resources that won’t just change your classroom, but could affect a whole school change towards embedding films and filmmaking across the curriculum.”

Participants on the course will develop a variety of techniques and strategies to enable them to confidently use film in the curriculum to raise attainment in literacy. A key aspect involves finding out how to use film as text to develop learners’ critical thinking, analytical and contextualisation skills, with an introduction to the key concepts of colour, character, camera, story, setting and sound – the 3Cs and 3Ss – and how learners can use these to analyse and decode film and other texts.

Mark Reid, head of BFI Education, said: “Evidence shows that for finding out about the world film has become the medium of choice for children and young people. The curriculum should reflect this – film should be part of what they learn and how they learn. The BFI and Into Film are working together to put film right at the heart of young people’s education and cultural experience. In developing this course we have brought together our expertise, knowledge and resources into something engaging and focused that will introduce teachers to the whole range of ways in which film can support literacy.”

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