In-class movies waste time


Can you watch to learn?

Movies in class can be helpful or pointless. There is a fine line separating the two.

Random clips about cats, touching sport movies, or comedies are entertaining, for sure, but in a classroom setting, there is no educational point.

Not to say that a moral lesson, or a lesson about entertainment, could not be made, but showing these films does not teach a student a class subject.

Even if a movie is full of factual information, it is not always purposeful. Long movies usually aren’t beneficial: students can start to zone out, get bored, and stop listening.

Some teachers force their students to take notes on the movie to make sure that they retain information. Although it’s a good thought, people still do not always pay attention when it is actually happening. From copying off the neighbor to writing about pointless things, students are not learning. The information is just not sticking in their brain because the students aren’t actually being taught.

Precious time in the classroom is not something we should be wasting watching movies. A teacher is there to share his or her knowledge with the students and inspire them to learn.

The teacher should be there to start a lively debate discussing the movie, not to sit there and present the film.

A high school in New York, Newburgh Free Academy, enacted a rule where each teacher must ask permission before using a movie in class. This idea works to “force the teachers to justify the use of class time to view films,” according to The Times-Herald Record.

Short clips of videos or movies are the way to go. Primarily teaching, the teacher could add to his or her lesson by enforcing the concept with a short clip that reiterates the information taught. Presenting the information in a new fashion facilitates discussions from a different perspective which helps in the learning process.

Social studies teacher Jake Hollin often uses short clips in his classes. The students learn a lesson and then take five minutes to watch a historical reenactment, an animated college student explaining his opinion on the matter, or an illustrated video.

Chemistry teacher Julie Baker also uses short clips in addition to her lessons. Students in her class like the videos as a way of explaining the material in a new way.

In short, movie clips that tie in with class material can be beneficial. Long, drawn out movies waste your precious money.

Morgan Taylor is a Copy Editor for The Patriot and