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A Take on a Gothic Poem: Tablet Film-making and Literary Texts

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This article focuses on a tablet film-making project involving a group of English and Drama student teachers, their university tutors and a class of boys in a South London school. We reflect on the potential for learning about aspects of the curriculum that emerged from the technology we were using and the approach that we took. We explore how the pupils responded to the process, developing their interpretations of a pre-twentieth century text with originality and creativity while drawing on their knowledge of wider culture. We analyse how the spontaneous and improvisational approach is facilitated by a structured stimulus and degree of prescription about the task. Our focus is on the features of tablet film-making that are prompted by the cultural location of the technology in the lives of young people. The ways that the students drew on the unexpected inspiration of their immediate context emerged as salient because they were able to view and evaluate their work throughout the process of making it. This offered a visual frame of reference (often overlooked in schools) that seemed to be key to the students’ engagement and learning, suggestive of Berger’s claim that ‘we never look just at one thing; we are always looking at the relation between things and ourselves’ (Berger, J. 1972. Ways of Seeing London: British Broadcasting Corporation and Penguin, 9).
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Keywords: assessment; digital technology; dramatic action; film-making; reading; response; tablet; visual

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Institute of Education, University of London, London, UK

Publication date: July 3, 2014

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