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Unit 1 - Action Adventure

Discussion in 'Media studies' started by captain_picard, Jan 27, 2011.

  1. captain_picard

    captain_picard New commenter

    When should we begin teaching Unit 1 for AQA Media Studies? Also, how long should be spent on it? We are teaching Media Studies as part of English, of which there are 4 lessons a week.

    Many thanks.
  2. captain_picard

    captain_picard New commenter

    When should we begin teaching Unit 1 for AQA Media Studies? Also, how long should be spent on it? We are teaching Media Studies as part of English, of which there are 4 lessons a week.

    Many thanks.
  3. As soon as they've finished the coursework. Spend as much time as you have until the exam! Mine are behind as they've had several teachers so are still doing their assignment 3, but I want this done by half term and we'll do the Action Adventure after that. They did some exam topic work in year 10 as I had them do a mock on it.
    What things are people doing for Action Adventure? I put a mock exam in the resources section. It'd be great if other people could get in the habit of uploading more resources there for this topic please.
  4. I've found this quite hard to teach so far: I started with doing the sub-genres like the Teacher Guidance suggested and my class had a lesson on each one - quest, disaster etc. We also looked at editing techniques (e.g. quick shot transitions in action sequences). However when I went to the teacher meeting we were told that camera, editing, music etc was irrelevant and that we should only be focusing on basic generic conventions, so characters, typical plotlines, use of exotic location, etc. We were also told to stay away from certain sub-genres, e.g. disaster.
    So, I've ended up doing lessons on narrative, location, character and watching a few trailers. The course stressed the importance of using lots of examples so I've tried to do that as far as possible, using trailers and showing one Indiana Jones film. We've also done a number of creative tasks: creating characters, and new ideas for films.
    We're moving on to representation next. Honestly, from what we were told in the meeting, you don't need to go into a lot of depth with genre. I assumed the kids would need to know about editing and shot distances, but it really is a basic understanding of character and plot that's required. We were also told that theory - e.g. Todorov or Propp - wasn't necessary, although I've still taught it, along with Levi-Strauss binary opposition.
  5. Levi Strauss and Binary oppositions? It's a GCSE. I didn't do this till degree level.
  6. I'm confused by the suggestion we shouldn't do sub-genres as it clearly refers to these in the guidance. An awful lot of action adventures have a disaster element to them. What are the 'classic ones' we need to stick to.
    If they're saying they don't need to go into all these different elements, what DO they need to do? Case studies of the business side and successful films? What about audiences? Worth getting students to do some primary audience research?

  7. ThereAreBunniesInMyHead

    ThereAreBunniesInMyHead Occasional commenter

    I went to the AQA London training day for action Adventure.. and there's the gist of what they said / what their handouts said..
    From what I ascertained, all students should be able to:
    Describe the Action Adventure Genre including characters, conventions, locations, some of the sub genres, narrative structure
    · Why the films are popular with audience (particularly men) – uses & gratifications, easy to watch, visually interesting, something for all family, stars, SFX & action sequences, live vicariously, timeless, identify with the hero, based on books / video games aimed at same audience etc
    gender and ethnic stereotypes, violence breeding real violence / copycat violence, dumbing down, predictable, unrealistic
    Heroes and Villains – conventional and unconventional, how they’ve changed over time
    · Importance of getting a BBFC classification of a maximum of a 12 in order to gain widest possible audience. Students should also know what the difference between a 12 and a PG would be and may have to pitch an idea that is specifically either a PG or a 12.
    · Use / Importance of high concept stories, SFX, action sequences etc
    · Write a proposal for a new film including story, cast, crew, appeal to an audience, marketing, merchandise, age rating, characters, conventions, location
    · Design their own poster
    · Design their own DVD cover (with a synopsis on the back)
    · Design their own storyboard for a trailer
    · Design their own storyboard to the opening sequence
    · Design their own website
    · Discuss other marketing ideas (eg merchandise, viral campaigns, social networking etc)
    · Write a film review for their film for a film magazine / newspaper

    with regards to sub genres, they said that although they do offer a variety of sub genres on their website guidance document, some sub genres will be very confusing for students and will not be as easily identifiable as action adventure. Action Adventure films tend to be defined by a quest, exotic location etc.. That's fine when looking at Pirate sub genre, or treasure hunting sub genre but more difficult to identify when looking at superhero or crime sub genre.. they even specifically warned people OFF of tackling the crime or superhero sub genres as it would be too easy for students to forget the "adventure" part and concentrate on the action elements..

    They way they were talking at the conference, the most likely design tasks would involve writing a synopsis of the film (so maybe DVD cover or Film Review) and storyboarding something like a trailer
    The most emphasised written questions seemed to be identifying codes and conventions of Action Adventure films and discussing popularity / unpopularity with audiences.
  8. MrPuss

    MrPuss New commenter

    ****-up / brewery ... [​IMG]
  9. Thanks so much for all that advice. Am I right in thinking they don't get the questions any more on the pre-released material, just the brief letter?
  10. Strider

    Strider New commenter

    I went to Media/Resources controlled assesments/film
    couldnt see your mock could you point me in right direction cheers

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