Critically Analyzing Content

Jacob Burns Film Center is an invaluable resource for learning to deconstruct film.

Several of the following activities were developed after attending their Summer Teachers Institute.

Why should you care?

Deconstruct documentaries to see how they persuade.
How does the first few minutes of An Inconvenient Truth establish Al Gore as a person to whom we should listen?

What do you see?

Communication depends on agreement of how we represent meaning.
Mighty Times: The Children's March
Controversy: Listen Read
You can find the film @ Teaching Tolerance

Can you trust your eyes?

An effective (and engaging) activity is to watch "Behind the Scenes" features on DVDs to see how special effects are constructed.
Elf & Lord of the Rings are great for exploring perspective. After watching how they achieve some of those great shots, I give my students cameras (vidoe or still) and let them try to recreate their own play on perspective. This activity is always a favorite with students of all ages.

It's All in the Editing

Original Trailer: The Shining
The Shining Recut

Using machinima to explore concept of camera angles & music