How an Into Film Club in schools can bring staff and students together

09 Jan 2018 in Into Film Club of the Month

5 mins
Astley Community High School film club
Astley Community High School film club

Our Into Film Club of the Month for January 2018 is from Astley Community High School in Northumberland. Colette Da Prato, school inclusion officer, and Rachel Martin, school librarian, have been running the fortnightly Into Film Club for nine years. Astley Community High School film club is a popular, with a large membership base, who not only enjoy watching and reviewing films, but whose members also get the opportunity to film their own trailers and screen them on the big screen at their local cinema.

Below, Colette talks about all of the great things her Into Film Club gets up to.

Our Into Film Club forms part of the Year 9 enrichment programme, where students choose an activity from a number of options. Into Film Club is very popular, and at the moment we have a student membership of 55.

Every fortnight, we meet on a Wednesday afternoon and simply enjoy movies together. It's a moment in our busy school timetables when we get together as a group and share the experience. When we have finished watching a movie, students are encouraged to write a review, expanding their film knowledge, vocabulary and literacy skills as well as potentially winning prizes which include free cinema tickets and movie merchandise.

During our annual ‘Activity Days' (at the end of term before we break up for the summer holidays) we at Astley Film Club like to add to students' experiences in relation to film. We usually include a day of movies and this often ensures that a trilogy is screened, such as James Bond or The Hunger Games, etc. Add popcorn and ice cream and you have the ingredients for a great day.

The following day, we attend a ‘pop-up' cinema run by the Tyneside Cinema, which gives students an opportunity to make a television advert. Props, scripts and plots are all developed with expert help. The ads are filmed and a green screen is used if necessary.

The last day of our activity usually includes a private screening of a film of our choice at the Tyneside Cinema, but before the film is screened, students are surprised when the adverts made the day before are screened before their chosen film comes on. This is a great moment, and a great experience for students to see themselves and their work on the silver screen.

Students in Year 10 and Year 12 completing their Duke of Edinburgh bronze and silver Award can volunteer their services to Astley Film Club. Here they can gain experience in administration tasks, helping to manage film club events and contribute to the judging of Year 9 film reviews.

If I was to give would-be leaders one piece of advice I would say there are processes to go through, it takes commitment and being organised. However, the benefits to interpersonal relationships between staff and student are immense. I love sharing the film experience with students and cannot imagine my work life without it!!!

Overall, our Into Film Club is a success here at Astley Community High School. We love our movies and enjoy sharing them together.

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.

View other Articles in this column

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