Cover image: Creative use of film-making in global learning

Creative use of film-making in global learning

In January 2013 the One World Centre on the Isle of Man issued this challenge to local primary teachers: Could your primary class make a four-minute film interpreting “It’s Not Fair!” in a global context? Six schools said “Yes!” and the results were shown at an Oscar-style ceremony at the beginning of May. Each school had a different approach, including: Stop frame: Images against a personalised soundtrack: If you would like to have a go, then these are some of the things to consider:
  • There are many different themes that could be used. Almost any topic that your class is studying could have a global aspect, but here are a few suggestions:a) Trade – why should the families that produce the cocoa beans, tea, coffee, bananas and a range of other goods that we use still find it difficult to feed their own children, help them to go to school and find health care? The Fairtrade Foundation website could be helpful here: Water – why do we spend a lot of money buying bottled water even though we have clean water in our taps when millions of people have to walk long distances to get even dirty water? A starting point could be Water Aid: c) Education – why can’t millions of children go to school? Send My Friend to School could be helpful here: d) Country based – perhaps your geographical theme of studying a different location could trigger an idea for the film.
  • Once the theme has been focussed into a particular topic, it is a good idea to plan the shape of the film. It could be based around a story, song, rap, poem or news story. The plan could be in the form of a story board using pictures to express what each sequence of the film could look like. Alternatively, words could be used instead of pictures. Groups of children could develop their own storyboard/plan either for one section, or for the whole topic and a winner chosen for development. This is one possible source of a template for a storyboard:
  • Will the whole class work together, or could they work in groups?
  • Do you have confidence to help the class, or is there someone you could draw in? One Manx school had access to a professional film maker who helped with the final editing. The Department of Education on the Isle of Man has a computer bus which schools can book; several schools benefitted from this IT support.
  • Beware of copyright materials. One Manx school sang their own version of a hit song, but the words and music are still covered by copyright. Some images and written materials may also be subject to copyright. Many schools have access to Garageband which is all copyright free. Some of your pupils may be able to write their own song or rap.
Teachers who entered the Manx competition were enthusiastic. They found it an excellent, creative way to focus learning. Some were surprised at the skills the children demonstrated. As well as the global learning that was taking place, the youngsters developed team-working abilities and improved their story-telling, persuasive writing and IT skills. This is the winning film, produced by Sulby School (the photo at the top of the page is of filming taking place): Details of other commended entries are on the One World Centre, Isle of Man website. If you’d like to be a guest entrant to the Manx Film Competition 2014, please e-mail for further information. Rosemary Clarke One World Centre, Thie Garey Ny Cloie, St Johns, Isle of Man IM5 1AE Tel: 01624 800 464 email: