Innovation in Language Learning

Edition 12

Accepted Abstracts

Learning by Playing, Animating Words and Images

Inma Carpe, The Animation Workshop-VIA University College (Denmark)

Hanne Pedersen, The Animation workshop/VIA University College/DK. University Politechnic of Valencia SP (Denmark)


Words and gestures are signs that fund symbols, we connect them to communicate and to connect with each other, in order to create a "meaning" out of experiences. But what about images? Aren.t they "like" words? Pieces of a "visual puzzle" that our mind puts together, to make sense of our reality? Visual narrative is a "language" as valid as writing or
speaking. Sometimes, a more valuable tool when there's an impediment to use verbal communication.
Animation is a feeling and visual thinking media which allows us to "translate" words into images, sentences into stories and scripts into movies. It teaches visual literacy, as any other curricula, together with emotional intelligence. It's a source of knowledge and for producing knowledge.
Not only educators but filmmakers, as George Lucas or Martin Scorsese, agree in the importance of teaching how to read images, in the same way we are taught writing at schools.
"I believe we need to stress visual literacy in our schools. We need to educate (young people) to understand the difference between moving images that engage their humanity and their intelligence, and moving images that are just selling them something" ( Scorsese,Martin. 2013.The persisting vision).
We are aware of the resistance that alternative learning tools suffer from the most traditional school systems, as Sir Ken Robinson claims, we need to change the old teachings paradigms. At the Animated Learning Lab, together, with some of the newest results from other schools and institutions, are already promoting and practicing animation
as a learning tool. We want to expose and share its effectiveness, which helps to shape creative, emotional and thoughtful minds.
Some of the newest studies in the European Community, such as, EMEDEUS, European Media Literacy Education, Pilot study on Media literacy assessment or Use of films in Schools ( University of Barcelona, 2014); high education courses like, the master of Art
Therapy and Animation from the University Polytechnic of Valencia (Spain), among others, help us to support this alternative tool, as a communication and artistic media of thoughts and emotions.
We work from the constructivism of Piaget, taking into account student's opinions to enhance the learning experience, by guiding the pupils in finding their own way to express themselves. Furthermore, to regulate emotions and work on human values such as: resilience, tolerance and critical thinking. Very important skills in our daily lifes to co-live in
a multicultural society and visual world, which is, continuously surrounded by apps, images and electronic devices of great influence. Our methodology merge the pedagogy of teaching and the professional way to work on animated productions. We focus on the learning process by observing, analyzing and creating images in movement, by watching
films and making our own.
Working with animation and visual literacy, permit to enhance our potential at acquiring and understanding information; by playing, animating the unspoken words in images, full of emotions, learning to talk and express.

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