April 19, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Now in Theaters: An Absolutely Must-See Doc About Digital Literacy

Filmmaker Cullen Hoback’s work represents a treasure trove of ideas for those who want to connect domestic spying and the death of privacy to civics, media studies, ICT, and political theory—not to mention information literacy and digital literacy specifically.

This Weekend Forget ‘Gatsby,’ and See ‘The World Before Her’ Instead

…the most riveting film about gender I’ve seen in a looooong time.

Why At First I Didn’t Think I Could Write About ‘Citizen Hearst’

So why am I so on the fence about recommending this well-produced and often engaging film?

When Curriculum is Media: The Important Lessons of ‘The Revisionaries’

Students are provided with curriculum in much the same way that religious adherents are provided with scripture, as something whose source and authorship are not be discussed, much less questioned.

After Earth Day, Who “Speaks” for Nature?

Aren’t most of our public policy debates about the environment informed by factoids/partial data/dramatic images supplied by media coverage rather than the relevant research?

MTV’s Andrew Jenks on Storytelling, Media Literacy, Baseball’s Bobby V, and His New Book

“Teaching media literacy seems almost as important as teaching any other subject because it is one of the main ways that young people learn and develop–and if you don’t know how to navigate the basics of consuming media and using media, you’re in trouble.”

Book Giveaway: ‘My Adventures as a Young Filmmaker’ by Andrew Jenks

“I want to be a filmmaker that is able to capture what my generation thinks, how they act, and what they ultimately stand for.” -Andrew Jenks

An Oscar-Winning Giveaway: UNDEFEATED on Blu-ray

The only problem with inspirational movies is that they can be kind of corny. Know what I mean? I’m not talking about message movies, although plenty of those attempt to inspire us–it’s just that their attempts are so transparent that the audience feels like it’s being treated like idiots. (And for some reason we educators, […]

Black History Month Giveaway: ‘King: A Filmed Record… Montgomery to Memphis’

Ely Landau’s King: A Filmed Record received an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary more than forty years ago, and strangely enough you could see that scenario repeating if it were released today—it’s that riveting, that smart, that important. (And actually this Sunday, it is being “released” again for a single day at select theaters.) Just […]

‘Girl Model’ Re-connects Media Literacy to its Beating Heart

There’s a danger when you spend a long, long time in the media literacy game…

Giveaway: Blu-ray and DVD Combo Pack of BULLY

Young people need to understand the way that media texts position them—even with, or perhaps especially with, those texts whose content they are sympathetic to…

50 Years of ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ on Film: A Chat with Documentarian Mary Murphy

“I feel there’s a direct line between readers of all stripes — young and old, Pulitzer Prize-winners and middle school students — because they all have a such a strong response to the novel. Community happens around ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’…”

Pick of the Day: The Day Carl Sandburg Died (DVD)

The Day Carl Sandburg Died. DVD. 84 min. Prod. by Bonesteel Films. Dist. by PBS Dist. 2012. ISBN 978-1-60883-701-4. $24.99.
Gr 8 Up–Carl Sandburg, one of the most celebrated American poets of the 20th century, lived an incredibly colorful life which was reflected in his work. Born into an indigent family of Swedish immigrants in western Illinois, Sandburg initially held a series of manual labor jobs. Later he became a union activist, a social orator, and even a self-proclaimed anarchist. His […]

As We Honor Veterans, a Film to Look Out For and Questions to Ask

Oral history, digital storytelling, critical evaluation of documentaries, fiction vs. non-fiction, and debunking stereotypes… Veterans Day offers all this and more.

Pick of the Day: Racing Dreams (DVD)

Racing Dreams. DVD. 90 min. Prod. by Racing Dreams. Dist. by PBS Dist. 2010, 2012 release. ISBN 978-1-60883-668-0. $24.99.
Gr 6 Up–In this fast-paced coming-of-age documentary set in the competitive world of kart racing, three young drivers spend a season navigating each other and their dreams. Annabeth Barnes, 11, Josh Hobson, 12, and Brandon Warren, 13, aspire to race in  some day, but before they can reach their collective goal, they each must face their own challenges off the track as […]

Pick of the Day: The Boxing Girls of Kabul (DVD)

The Boxing Girls of Kabul. DVD. 52 min. National Film Board of Canada. 2011, 2012 release.  ISBN unavail. $195.
Gr 9 Up–The opening flashback of this documentary showing the cruel treatment of women under the Taliban will grab the attention of audiences in women’s studies and sociology classes. The video shifts to present day and focuses on three women who are trying to change the lifestyle for women in  where their advancement is frowned upon. They are training to be boxers […]