How taking part in the See It, Make It programme inspired our club

01 Jun 2016 BY Jess Duggan and Jen Marks in Into Film Club of the Month

4 mins
Jess Duggan and Jen Marks
Jess Duggan and Jen Marks

May's Leaders of the Month are Jess Duggan and Jen Marks from Abbey Catholic Primary School in Birmingham. Below, the pair tell us about how they've been developing their club members' filmmaking skills, as well as their own.

We have been running film club for 6 months for children in Key Stage 2 (years 5 and 6). We have used film to support our curriculum through the Blind cinema experience; this is where children had to provide the voiceover for a short film. The children developed their creative writing skills and worked with an experienced artist, using speaking funnels to talk to members of the public in a cinema. 

We've also been lucky enough to work with an experienced filmmaker through the See It, Make It programme to create a short film with our club members. The children have had lots of fun linking it to our curriculum topics, using the knowledge that they have gained in lessons and have worked collaboratively to create their own scripts, gaining experience with a variety of writing genres.

These opportunities have enabled pupils who are less confident speakers to excel, by working outside their usual comfortable environments and they have had to immerse themselves in the projects fully. This project is still active and has had a positive impact on the children's imaginative writing so far. We are very excited to see how much progress the children make as we continue on our journey. 

As film club leaders, we have been able to see the children in different learning environments. This enabled us to gain positive relationships outside the general classroom learning environments. It has also given us chance to develop our own skills in filmmaking, allowing us to see where and how film can be linked into the curriculum, thus providing a more interactive and exciting curriculum for the children. 

In order to develop our professional skills further we were also able to take part in Arts Award training, which allowed us to give the children the opportunity to link the skills they are gaining in the filmmaking process to achieve an award. As a staff we were able to explore how to provide the children with the right tools and encourage them to be creative when presenting the exciting work they are doing to others. 

In order to give the children the opportunity to explore film, we started by introducing them to some classic films. As a club we watched some classic, modern and best sellers; The Wizard Of OzThe Santa Clause and Pitch Perfect. The children watched the films over a number of weeks and then wrote film reviews, discussing them with each other. They were then able to share their opinions with others by posting their reviews online. 

Into Film provides the children with the amazing opportunity of going to the cinema, an experience which we as adults take for granted, however it reminded us that for children this might have an impact on their wider interests. They enjoyed watching Oddball and the Penguins on the big screen and sharing their experience with other members of the school community. 

If we were to give any upcoming leaders any advice we would recommend linking the experience to the Arts Award, as the children will then have the opportunity to gain a National Award for their hard work.

Registrations are now open for the 2016/17 edition of our free See It, Make It filmmaking programme. See It, Make It (SIMI) matches participating Into Film Clubs with a professional film practitioner to support both training for educators and skill development for young people through the making of a short film. The deadline for clubs to register their interest is Friday 10 June 2016.

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Jess Duggan and Jen Marks, May's Leaders of the Month

Jess and Jen have been running the Abbey Catholic Primary School film club for 6 months, using film to improve pupil's filmmaking skills.

This Article is part of: Into Film Club of the Month

Each month we celebrate one Into Film Club's achievements and talk to the club leader about how they approach their sessions.

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