Quick MovieTalk Thoughts

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17 thoughts on “Quick MovieTalk Thoughts”

  1. I really appreciate all the work Jody and others have done for this MovieTalk thing. We don’t need an infinite number of activities, just a few heavy hitters that can hold the weight of 15-20 minute spurts of delivering CI. MovieTalk works perfectly, or at least it did today.

  2. I did my first movie talk today, too. I echo you James. We spent about 5 minutes on just the first 2 seconds of the video and 30 minutes on 20 seconds, and we have about 15 more to go.

    I never realized how powerful this is.

  3. I also think that MovieTalk (and variants) is a very flexible thing. You can make it almost just narration of the scene at the level of your students’ comprehension, making two passes at each short scene (once to view and maybe hear it, a second pass to get target language narration). I do this with a full feature film.

    Or you can add circling and discussion, more involvement with students, as James did today. I think of this more like YouTube and Discuss. Video use is great.

    1. This is a good point. On the one hand we have what I have described, going through a video very slowly with lots of circling. Diane calls this YT&D (YouTube and discuss).

      Then there is when we have students watch a full movie, presumably a movie in L2, like a French film. That would be more streamlined in that the movie could be allowed to play for longer spurts, with replaying just for simple narration as Diane describes. This she called MovieTalk. One question: Do you let these feature-length movies play with sound and subtitles? No subtitles? For what you have called YT&D we seem to all agree to play the clip on mute, because likely it is not in L2 originally anyway (like the Mickey clip).

      Do we want to set this distinction in stone? It seems important to me for clarification purposes.

      1. I think we need to be careful NOT to use the moniker, MovieTalk, unless we are doing MovieTalk. MT is not done with the movie soundtrack on, period. It’s done by watching short snippets of a movie (the goal being to watch the entire film in these consecutive snippets) and then, hearing narration provided by a teacher while watching it again. The original MT uses feature-length films with college students. Since most of us don’t teach college students, we tend to show shorter-length films. Original MT appears to be

        Watching a movie/film/video/or snippet on youtube with the sound ON is called watching a movie/film clip/video/or snippet. If we stop and discuss what we are seeing and hearing to make it more comprehensible, then that’s called “stop and discuss for clarity.” It’s not MovieTalk.

        Since the originators of MT have done so much work to refine what it is they do and have certainly formalized the process, I think we should be careful about attaching the name MovieTalk to other activities which are similar, but not MovieTalk.

        I feel that this is similar to the TPRS or comprehensible input instruction dilemma. Lots of people say they do it, but are doing something very different and attaching those names to their activity. It just feels more respectful to me to only use the MT term if that is what we are doing. I don’t think it’s up to us to decide. It’s already been decided by those who came up with it and developed it. http://glesismore.com/movietalk/index.html
        – copyrighted content

        1. Well said, Jody. I agree. I should have entitled my post “Quick YouTube and Discuss Observations.” I probably won’t be doing MovieTalk proper for a while, because my students–even third and fourth year–still need me to go super slow as in YT&D in order to get anything out of anything.

  4. I did a Movie Talk my 3rd day of school with both my 1 and 2s. It was the Wildebeest short (1 min) from Martina Bex’s blog. It amazed me how well it worked. I did a Movie Talk the 3rd day of school and created a reading from it that we all read and chorally translated the next day. It was extremely powerful, coming that early in the semester.

    1. Yes. Please share!! I REALLY want to do this with my Spanish 1 class but I thought MT was supposed to be saved for later in the semester. I thought about using somewhat of the script that Martina gave and just focusing on talking about the Wildebeast and their features. My students already know eyes so I would teach patas and cuernos and then circle the heck out of it and then move on to cocodrilo o tronco and then describe those both and then take a vote on whether it is a cocodrilo o tronco. Leave the students on a cliffhanger to think about it until the next day and then circle cocodrilo and tronco some more and then either use dice or piensa. (I’m having a hard time deciding which is best). How did you do it with your first year?

      1. Hay, dice (knew from Los pollitos song), camina (knew from tpr), toca (knew from tpr) were the main verbs I used. I have 26 pictures of animals for the letters of the alphabet that I used to circle a ton. My class already knew the parts of the body, too, so that made describing the animals easier. It was really successful!

  5. Today I used the “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” clip in my level 2 classes. First period it went really well, and all of my students were highly involved. Fourth period it went well, but some of my students were not quite as engaged. (It was just before lunch.) They still enjoyed it and particularly were pleased that they could identify the characters and say what they were afraid of. Tomorrow we will continue on with talking about what different students are afraid of. In the film, one of the Hogwarts students turns a snake into a clown-faced jack-in-the-box. One of my students commented, “She just made it worse.” Guess who’s afraid of clowns. It worked really well to show the clip without any sound.

  6. I’m sure you all have seen this French toilet paper commercial.

    I am using it in II and III Spanish.

    Target phrases ( I know it looks like a lot, but they know dibuja, hace, paga so I consider the está + pp 1 structure–look at me fighting with myself… maybe it is too much :-/ )
    está dibujando
    está usando
    está haciendo
    está pagando las facturas
    quiere que ella (no) use

  7. Great, really short video cartoon from José Luís Orozco for elementary–SOUND definitely OFF on this one–I can envision great CI and personalization possibilities here. Later, it could certainly be used with sound for the song or perhaps, before. Sound would definitely get in the way of CI here.


  8. This may have already been mentioned at some point on this blog or it may be something very obvious. If so, I am sorry for repeating, but I just discovered it and I am ecstatic. After using a Youtube video to do a MovieTalk, I wanted to make a comic strip and have students write what happens in each scene. I rewatched the video, paused it at the place I wanted for the comic picture, then hit print screen on my keyboard (it looked like Prnt Scrn). I then opened up paint and hit “paste”. It worked just like a screen shot on an iPhone. I cut the images to my liking on paint then numbered them. So, Wednesday and Thursday in class, I’m going to pull the images up on the projector. Easy. 🙂
    I also found http://safeshare.tv/ which cuts out the side bars and ads on youtube videos. Thanks to everyone for all the great help on this site!

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