Filmmaking Teacher Resources
Find Filmmaking educational ideas and activities
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Understanding History, Religion, and Politics in Jerusalem and Beyond
Students examine the reasons behind the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Exploring multiple perspectives, they discuss the concepts of peoples' rights and justice in the area. They practice applying conflict resolution principles as well.
Exploring Women's History
Learners read and analyze Jessie Benton Fremont's travelogue of her trip out west in 1849 to identify the gender roles, social attitudes and class distinctions of the time. They then adapt the the travelogue into a film script.
Research is a great way to extend the writing process. Learners gather data about their personal heroes and create a multimedia project. They write about their heroes for the "My heroes short film festival and competition," and create a short film depicting their hero.
If I Could Talk Like the Animals. . .
Students read and discuss a film review of the animated movie Antz and then write a monologue from the perspective of a non-human organism.
Soldados: Soldiers' Stories
This lesson will help students practice conducting an oral history interview, increase knowledge about what it is like to be a soldier, gain knowledge about the Vietnam War and gain knowledge about the Chicano experience in the U.S.
Political Asylum Talk Show
Learners view videos, visit websites, and read about the nature and changes made to the idea of political asylum. Beginning with Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi Germany, they will explore policy change throughout the years. The lesson culminates in a simulation of discussions regarding the tragedy of SS St. Louis.
Life, Camera, Action
Young scholars investigate the history, politics and culture of Somalia. They analyze media coverage and portrayal of the country. They focus on the role of media in reporting on Somalia and the current debate over the film Black Hawk Down.
Free Speech or Hate Speech?
Students see the difference between protected and prohibited speech as guaranteed by the First Amendment. They explain why free speech is essential to a democracy and consider how best to deal with speech they find offensive.
Journalism in War Time: What Does the Public Need to Know?
Students view the film "War Feels Like War" about journalist's experiences in the Iraqi War and discuss the role of journalism in war. They evaluate different media sources for war reporting and determine the questions they want to see addressed.
The Learning Network section of the New York Times produces high-quality teaching materials. This issue gets middle or high schoolers reading an article about how people use art to express their response to high-stress events. They work in groups to craft and practice skits illustrating a tragedy and explain how it could also be formatted as a short video. This lesson is a thoughtful inclusion for your performing arts class.
Students research the different perspectives of important groups and figures involved in the American Revolution and apply their findings to write and perform monologues depicting this pivotal time in history.
Students consider how a political candidate creates a campaign image. They, in groups, create short biographical films promoting various candidates currently running for office in the United States.
The Secret is Out
Learners explore ideas about journalism ethics as they relate to Watergate and discuss various issues related to an anonymous source being revealed. They write letters to the public editor of The NY Times about credibility and anonymous sources.
Should They Stay or Should They Go?
High schoolers share opinions about labor unions, discuss the recent split within the AFL-CIO, and write an article based on interviews with union members.
Stuents explore aspects of bravery, family relationships, and teamwork as well as the darker human aspects of deviance and confession as they read the journal of the main character Paul Fisher and dramatize events from the novel in videotape format.
Documenting Child Labor in Nepal
Young scholars plan and research on a topic regarding child labor in Nepal. They create a script and storyboard for a documentar production, then use a digital camcorder to capture video.
Exploring Arthurian Legend
Students investigate the evolution of the King Arthur stories and analyze them as a window into the culture that preserved them. They trace the legends through their earliest versions through medieval and Victorian times and into the present.
Journeying to Create
Show a video clip that descripes how taking a journey can change a person's outlook on life. Learners write a paragraph about a place that uses imagery and tone to create a specfic effect. They evaluate their journal entries as well.
Much Ado About Something (Lesson 2)
Students view more video clips of Shakespeare's plays. They answer comprehension questions over the video. They are introduced to the language Shakespeare used as well.
My Country, My Country: To Vote or Not to Vote
Students view a film about elections in Iraq. They examine the story of a doctor and his decisions to vote. They work together to complete a worksheet about voter turnout.