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Colette Bennett - Live Blogging the Wizard of Oz

Colette Bennett - Live Blogging the Wizard of Oz

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Published by Classroom 2.0 Book
Chapter submission for the Classroom 2.0 Book Project
Chapter submission for the Classroom 2.0 Book Project

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Published by: Classroom 2.0 Book on Jul 16, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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07/16/2012

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5th
 AnniversaryBookProject
Live Blogging The Wizard of Oz
By:
Colette Bennett
Creative Commons License:
CC BY
Author contact:
@teachcmb56
Author Biography:
Colette Marie Bennett is theEnglish and Social Studies Department Chair atWamogo High School, a combined college prepand vocational agriculture school (Regional SchoolDistrict #6) in the Northwest corner of Connecticut. Bennett has 20 years of experi-ence teaching in parochial and public school systems from grades 6-12. She has pre-sented how technology is incorporated in her English classroom at the ConnecticutComputers in Education Conference (2010), the National Council of Teachers AnnualConference (2010), and the Advanced Placement Annual Conference (2011). Sheblogs about how she has increased her classroom libraries and what she does withthese books at http://usedbookclassroom.wordpress.com/
Activity Summary
Movies are wonderful resources in education, but they are usually associated with passive learning.To keep students active and engaged during movies, we have used a free live-blogging software pro-gram called G-snap (http://gsnap.com/).G-snap is a free website that allows anyone to set up a live blogging event; access to the event canbe posted by a link or directly embedded on a webpage. There is no registration required, commentscan be saved, and the event can run for several days. During an event, student questions can beposted and most importantly, all participant responses can be moderated before they are shared. The
use of G-snap as a live blogging platform engages all students silently while the lm is playing, andprovides a record of responses for discussion after the lm.
Class or subject area: English/Language ArtsGrade level(s):
7-12
Specifc learning objectives:
Participate in a written discussion with other students while watching a lmRespond in writing to questions posed during a lm (EX: the character’s journey)Post their own questions for sharing after the lm is completed
 
Movies are wonderful resources in education, but they are usually associated with passive learning.To keep students active and engaged during movies, we have used a free live-blogging software pro-gram called G-snap.G-snap is a free website that allows anyone to set up a live blogging event; access to the event canbe posted by a link or directly embedded on a webpage. There is no registration required, commentscan be saved, and the event can run for several days. During an event, questions can be posted andmost importantly, participant responses can be moderated before they are shared.
The most recent success was with MGM’s classic The Wizard of Oz which we used as an introduc
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tion to a 9th grade unit centered on the universal elements of stories. The lm was chosen because
of its illustration of the steps or stages in a “Journey” seen in most stories. Some of these steps havebeen labeled as the “Call to Adventure,” the “Refusal of Call,” the “Tests, Allies and Enemies,” and the
“Return with New Knowledge”; all of these steps or stages are easily matched with Dorothy’ Gale’sadventure from Kansas to the land of Oz and back to Kansas. When the Wicked Witch of the Westlocks Dorothy in the tower, the confrontation could be called a “Supreme Ordeal.”One specic lesson’s objective was to have students identify a character’s weaknesses or strengths,a preparing for the journey step “Tests, Enemies and Allies.” We wanted students to recognize thequalities that character thinks he or she lacks is exactly the unrecognized quality the character pos
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sesses. Of course, Frank Baum’s story is all about motivation and character qualities.Our students are fortunate enough to have the use of net books in class but other digital devices can
be used to access the materials used in class.
Using the G-snap software, I posed a series of questions at critical moments in the lmWhat motivates Glinda to place the ruby slippers on Dorothy’s feet? Is this in Dorothy’s best inter 
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est?What happens when one strays off the path of The Yellow Brick Road?What qualities does the Scarecrow exhibit? How is this connected to his motivation?I also wanted them also to reect on the motivations of the Wicked Witch of the West and the intensityof her dialogue. For example: “those slippers will never come off . . . as long as you’re alive!” or “Thelast to go will see the rst three go before her.”I posted: Is this lm appropriate for children? Is the lm too scary?Their responses were mixed. Many felt the lm was ne for children, but some students considered
that the dialogue was really much more frightening then they had remembered:
“I do think some parts are scary for children. I think I was about 5 years old and I remember hiding
under a blanket when the ying monkeys came on TV.”“No I don’t think that children should be protected from watching this movie. There are many vio
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lent movies that children shouldn’t see but this movie is classic.”“I saw this lm when I was a little kid, and I was frightened for days, I had nightmares about this
horrible witch, so I think it might be a little extreme for little kids.”
“I saw it when was like 4 and no its not that bad, they will get over it. It’s not like a death threat,well it kinda is but never mind. I don’t think it’s that bad.”

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