Reading through Films

Madhavi Gayathri Raman, - Vijaya


This paper captures the design of a comprehensive curriculum incorporating the four skills based exclusively on the use of parallel audio-visual and written texts. We discuss the use of authentic materials to teach English to Indian undergraduates aged 18 to 20 years. Specifically, we talk about the use of parallel reading (screen-play) and audio-visual texts (Shawshank Redemption, and Life is Beautiful, A Few Good Men and Lion King) drawn from popular culture in the classroom as an effective teaching medium. Students were gradually introduced to films based on novels with extracts from the original texts (Schindler’s List, Beautiful Mind) for extended reading and writing practice. We found that students began to pay more attention to aspects such as pronunciation, intonational variations, discourse markers and vocabulary items (phrasal verbs, synonyms, homophones, and puns).

Keywords: Reading, films, popular culture, ESL classroom, language skills

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