While at IATEFL Glasgow 2012, I was lucky enough to see Khulood Al-balushi’s presentation, in which she shared various ideas for using movies with your students, as well as offering advice on how to choose suitable movies, especially important in the Kingdom of Bahrain, where she works as a Curriculum Specialist at the Ministry of Education. I asked her to share her ideas via my blog, and she agreed. Over to Khulood:
How can you make your students benefit from watching movies they like ?
Since movies are a rich source for language learning and they are considered to be fun and enjoyable, here are some practical ideas that you can implement to make use of movies in the English Classroom:
- Make students watch a movie trailer of the movie you intend to use and present the following activity:
This will help you motivate your students to watch and respond to the movie and can tell you if the movie is favored by the students. Otherwise you can look for a different movie.
Watching movie clips
You can make your students watch movie clips if the length of your lesson is short or if you intend to present a specific language skill such as reading, speaking, grammar or writing. The following are a few examples:
- Students can watch a scene of the movie “The Cat in the Hat” and write down the process the cat uses to make cupcakes.
- Students watch a scene from the movie “Volcano” and answer the following question: “What would you do if you were in this situation?” to promote critical thinking and present a lesson about natural disasters.
- Ask students to watch a scene from the movie” Cast Away” and ask them to think about the following question “What would you do if you were trapped on a remote island?” (critical thinking and second conditional)
- Students watch a scene from the movie “Titanic” and answer an activity that involves reading and vocabulary and promotes critical thinking by comparing the actual story and the selected scene. Click to download the activity: Titanic movie task
- Students watch the movie trailer of the movie “Inkheart” and answer the following question: ” What if you had the power to bring a book to life by simply reading it aloud?” to promote speaking and critical thinking.
- For creative writing and speaking, you can show your students a clip from “Spy Kids 2” movie and ask them to imagine being in a virtual reality game and ask them to describe their game in writing and present it to their classmates.
Watching full-length movies
- Students watch ” Charlie and The Chocolate Factory” and answer an activity that aims at discussing characters:
- Students watch the movie “Oliver” and read the book and then compare between the movie and the actual story by answering a given activity. Click to download the activity: The Movie versus the Book
- Student watch a full-length movie and answer the activity sheets which are designed for two different levels. Click to download an example: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
- Students watch the movie “Finding Nemo” and asked to produce a creative project such as drawing, creating bookmarks, designing a puppet show, performing a play…etc.
Of course, all of these activities can be modified based on your needs and your students.
By: Khulood Al-balushi