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Films vs Books

Heather is a Primary Teacher from Canada who is currently working in London through Protocol Education. Heather tackles the debate of films versus books.

I’m sure a question most teacher’s or young literates come to ask themselves at one point in their life, is whether or not movies can inspire reading.

You’ve heard more than once (no doubt), that reading a book is much better than watching the film. That the adapted version of a series just doesn’t serve the book’s intimate and detailed characteristics which classify it as ‘literature’. Simply put, the film just doesn’t ‘do the book justice’.

Indeed, I’ve read many novels that have caused me to have immense emotional connections with the characters in their comprehensive portrayal that add to the depth of their past and thus their construction as a unique and human-like figure within a text. Their world becomes real, and takes on a life on its own (much like the world of Tolkien – who in fact, created entire languages based on the various races and tongues they were said to speak). Some even include a well-planned map!

We can find more in common with a character if we are allowed to imagine the words at will. We can create in our minds, a unique illustration that we, essentially, create independently with the aid of the author’s words. That character belongs to us, and in that invention, we become afflicted with the guilt or mishap that occurs to that individual. We become enthralled in all that they experience, and in how they are shaped. In viewing the smaller obscure things that make-up this individual, we can find ourselves drawn to similar traits or qualities that they exhibit in reacting or decision making.

Just like reading, which can make us eager to watch a film (as Harry Potter did); we may want to see how our own constructs compare with the views of Hollywood Producers. In turn, sometimes a film can inspire reading by bringing us into a world we may find intimidating or uninteresting, until we are exposed to a plot that pricks our interest.

Perhaps for lower readings in your classes, you can trigger that innate motivation by suggesting a book that’s already been turned into a film. The child then, already has a good idea of the images (conveyed onscreen), and may even find the plot more readily understood – thus, able to follow along and maintain focus as the characters’ are given dimension otherwise missed.

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Tags: Heather, LondonNorth, Canadian-trained, teacher, books, literature, films, characters, learning, experiences, insights

Category: Australian Teachers


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