The international success of a quality UK cartoon video for small children shows that video could help many reluctant learners to understand 'how to read' or 'find out where they got stuck', especially those unwilling or unable to go through clerical activities at a computer.
All the school or large class can join in the project, in one way or another:
• Students with skills in computers, graphics, technology, writing, music, composing, organising, researching, narrating, singing, join in every stage and develop their skills further.
• Very good readers advise on what helped them learn to read
• Learners with difficulties to advise on how they are stuck and
try out solutions.
• Everyone with bright ideas at all levels in the school advises and comments and evaluates at all stages.
• All students helping to make the video will have a real stimulus in thinking about reading and spelling. 'What do you think people need to know to be able to read?'
TARGETS.Any audience can be selected - young or old, strugglers, teenagers and adults, English language learners, ethnic groups such as aboriginal, using their own culture, or a comic version mainly for laughs - for example, with a sound-track speeded like Donald Duck.
• A higher school profile for reading and community effort.
• Improved literacy throughout a school.
• A diagnostic tool to find where failing learners are stuck.
• Win a prize at a film festival, for a work of art.
• Evaluations by trialing versions from different schools can identify what proves most helpful to the target audiences, and these successes can be turned into widely-available versions. Videos and follow-up CDs may be suitable for wider distribution and export as an Australian Innovation.
COSTS. Where a school or centre has computers, and access to a CD-drive, a color printer, scanner, black-and-white fotocopier, a simple word-processing program and grafics programs even as simple as Photoshop LE and Appleworks that 8-year-olds can use, and a tape-recorder, then introductory production need involve no further costs except stationery and phone/postage, up to stage B. Sponsors might be found.An early experimental version, and newer storyboard are available plus consultant assistance
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