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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

announcing Teachers’ Guides to Doctor Who

Teachers' Guides to Doctor Who

My new thing, at DoctorWhoTeachersGuides.co.uk:

Doctor Who is a fantastic resource for connecting preteens and teens with concepts of media literacy and critical thinking… without them even catching on that they’re learning.

With its fast-paced plots, cheerful humor, and inventive science-fiction settings, Doctor Who is enormously popular with children in the U.K. — and increasingly in the U.S., Canada, and beyond — and kids are naturally drawn into discussing it. In fact, after the debut of a new episode, it can be tough to get them to stop talking about it!

Professional film and TV critic MaryAnn Johanson is a longtime Doctor Who fan who has led kids in conversations about the show in classroom settings. (In fact, it was her love of the classic show as a teenager that led her in the direction of media journalism!) She has created these discussion guides for teachers of students ages 10 to 15 to lead fun, engaging dialogues in their classrooms after new episodes air in September 2012, Christmas 2012, and into 2013.

Included are questions to pose to students and a key for teachers to direct the discussion. Simply download each PDF guide to print out or refer to onscreen. Teachers do NOT have to have watched each episode (though it will be more fun for teachers if they have).

New guides will be posted by the Monday immediately after each new episode airs in September. The guide for the Christmas episode will be available immediately after New Year’s, in time for the restart of school.

There’s a Facebook page for the Guides. Please Like it if it’s something you’ll find useful to have in your feed.

This is an experiment. I’ll definitely do the Guides through the Christmas episode, and if the response is good enough, I’ll continue. This is a paid service: the Guides are only £1 (about US $1.60) each… and the first one’s free. Payment is not via PayPal but with any major credit card and most debit cards.

Please spread the word to any teachers you may know who might find these useful. I imagine it will be mostly teachers in the U.K. who would even consider using these (hence the pricing in sterling) but I’d be delighted if teachers in the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and elsewhere started using them.



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