Sunday, August 2, 2009

Using Drama and Film - Research

"I've seen the difference that using film makes to motivating and involving boys and I will work to make sure it becomes part of my practice.... the "wow factor" works as the films are so much part of what my children know, they are starting from a stronger knowledge base."

The UKLA's research project "Raising Boys' Achievements in Writing" has a small section [Section 3, pages 36 and 37] about the effects of using film and drama to motivate our boy writers.

The section refers to the linking of writing, drama and visual texts across the curriculum. Here is a list of some of the findings:

1. Drama as a tool for learning and not a separate subject domain.
2. Commitment to plan for a slower pace in learning.
3. Provide more space for reflection.
4. Allow children more time to talk before writing and more choices about how to record their work.
5. A commitment to spend more time developing both drama and visual approaches.
6. The use of drama to motivate.
7. Clear commitment to integrate the visual, i.e., film, DVD, stills, pupil drawings into the curriculum.
8. Use of 3D stumulus, music and videos alongside books for both fiction and non-fiction writing.


  1. I ABSOLUTELY love this. I work with students at an alternative school and many of my students are boys. I have learned that when I slow down my expectations and fold in more time for talk and reflection (though not too much - that can stifle as well) my students appreciate it and are more devoted to their learning.

    Film plays a big role in my English class, as well as History.

    I find it to be an excellent way to begin a writing project - more students are on the same playing field when it comes to understanding than with a text prompt. Plain and simple. Yet, the more they write the more the playing field evens out.

    I also like them to create film and multimedia projects - something else they appreciate it because it keeps them active :)

    Thanks for this post. I have added your blog to my feedreader.

  2. Tracy,

    Thank you for your kind comments.

    Isn't it terrific when what you are doing in the classroom is supported by research?

    Sounds like your students benefit greatly by using film, visuals and multimedia.

    Thank you for sharing.