Using Pixar Short Films in the English Language Arts Classroom


Good Morning!

I just wanted to share with you that I went live on Facebook yesterday discussing how to use Pixar Short Films to teach and review literary terms. I am part of the Secondary Series group, where we discuss, post and share tips and ideas on using technology and creativity within the English Language Arts classroom. The broadcast was about 10 minutes, and you can find it right here.

I also wanted to share with you some of the worksheets and freebies I shared with the viewers.  I love using the Pixar Short Films in my class because they are quick, funny and an engaging way to intrigue my students to learn.  As I explained in the video, one of the first items I like to review is literary devices because we use them all year long.  I have never been a write-the-notes-from-the-board type of teacher, as I find this technique anticlimactic and rather boring. In addition, the kids do not learn a thing from just copying notes, and it is the application that is the most important.


My two favorite short films are because they are great for characterization and inference:



The nice part is you can find so many of these short films right on YouTube.  You can just Google the list of "Pixar Short Films", and they will give you a lengthy list.  In addition, any of you who are 1:1 with iPads or Chrome Books, you can create a link in Google classroom, and it can take the students directly to the YouTube videos.  

One of my largest tips for using these films is to only teach or use ONE to TWO terms per film.   Having the student identify ten devices in one film is tricky, and it may overwhelm your students.  I usually do a quick mini-lesson on one-two terms, and then give the students this worksheet to use while they are watching the film.


I also created an Inference worksheet to use with the short film, Partly Cloudy.  Here it is:


I hope you find these activities engaging in your classroom as you head back to school in August or September.  


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