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A lesson for teachers from SW7

Posted on: October 30, 2015

Video source

This is the original movie trailer for the highly anticipated Star War: The Force Awakens movie (SW7).

Here are just two of many remixes.

Video source

The first one above used the SW7 trailer soundtrack over a trailer for Batman vs Superman. It is impressive how it works and it could be used to point out how formulaic trailers have become. Students could be asked to critically and creatively deconstruct the trailers and decipher what its components or themes are.

Video source

The second borrows from reaction videos and patches snippets from Pixar’s Inside Out over the SW7 trailer. There could be lessons about contextualizing or decontextualizing events, and meaningfully transferring concepts from one situation to another.

What is the lesson for teachers?

They need not try to create something new to show how much they know. There is very little that is really new, so the effort is futile.

Instead they might be inspired by how those two YouTubers reused existing content and remixed it to create something different. To do this requires deep knowledge (e.g., of the different trailers, the possible connections between them, the segments to use) and immaculate skills (e.g., splicing and dicing precisely to tell a story).

Teachers should take care not to create Frankenstein monsters as they do this. That sort of reusing and remixing is unethical and unattractive to learners. It pushes them away. The good sort pulls learners in the same way good YouTube videos do. They are short, entertaining, and teach subversively.

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