Because of the advancement in technology, present day generation are more interested in visual stuff like television, cartoon movies and mobile phones. It is generally observed that most kids all over the world spend long time in front of these electronic devices watching with unabated interests . I was just wondering how we could use this interest to promote and facilitate the teaching of English as a second language.
As it is known that most people like films, therefore using it as a tool for teaching English as a foreign language could be a brilliant idea. However the question that arises is how effective could teachers use movies?
It would be advisable for a teacher who wants to use movies to teach to take into consideration students’ taste. In this case, the teacher should check how interested the students are in film, because there is a tendency that not all of them might be interested.
If it is discovered that majority of the students are interested in film, the next issue to consider is the type of film to be used to teach them. In this respect, one might take into account the students’ culture. The film that is introduced in class must be carefully selected to avoid any scene that might be inappropriate to students’ cultural sensitivity .This is to prevent negative backlash that will be detrimental to the process of teaching and learning English. A culturally accepted film will effectively promote the teaching and learning process.
On the other hand, identifying films or movies containing characters which are generally loved and accepted by students can positively promote students understanding and therefore the learning process. For instance, if you know that your students love Mickey Mouse ,Tom and Jerry, then these can be used for class presentation.
After completing the above steps, and you have chosen the most appropriate and acceptable movie or film, then you would like to use it in a manner that students would derive benefits from it. The following activities can be used by a teacher to make using movies in class academically rewarding:
Firstly, I would like to show the movie in one session if it is a short one to give the students a general overview of what it is about. Nevertheless, before starting, I would like to ask them to look for how certain words are used by the characters in different situations. And also for them to predict what would happen in the next scene or at the end of the movie. This is to make them focus while watching.
A teacher might even transcribe the words of the movie in the form of text. This can allow the teacher to treat the scenes of the movies like paragraph by paragraph and gives students the chance to read what they have watched. In this way, when the movie is played scene by scene, each scene would be analyzed in class to extract grammatical, lexical as well as practical usage of the language in real life situations.
In conclusion, using movies in a class by setting specific goals for the students prepares and enables them to progress even out of the classroom, because they would have acquired the skills that help them to deduce language benefits from any movies that they might watch. I would be most appreciative for any comment about how to use movies effectively in classroom.