We recently received a request from the Cuyahoga County (Ohio) Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument to use our Lit2Go recording of Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address in a video they were preparing about the Monument. Their finished video can be viewed below:

As teachers we know that it is sometimes (well, often) difficult to entice students to really spend time with a speech, poem, or other literary passage. For many students, it’s one time through and they’re done. The Lit2Go free audiobook website provides numerous opportunities for students to more fully engage texts. I covered many of these in another post a few years ago: How To Use Lit2Go Audiobooks in Your Classroom. The video above got me to thinking that creating movies using short passages and illustrating with appropriate images would also be an excellent activity to encourage students to take time with a passage and really seek to understand what each part was about before they could choose appropriate imagery.

I’ve created two lists below. The first is of Lit2Go passages and poems that would be especially appropriate for such a movie-making activity. In the second list I’ve identified some photo and drawing collections that would be potential image sources for the activity.

(My apologies to the many FCIT Newsletter subscribers from beyond the United States. Our audio and image collections are understandably US-centric, but copyright-friendly audio passages and images could be drawn from many sources.)

If, for example, a student selected Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address to illustrate, the montage below shows just some of the images resources that would be available. Note that all the illustrations and photos linked from above are also available in high-resolution versions. Therefore, students would be able to pan through some of the wide battle scenes as the Gettysburg Address plays.

I hope this example has given you new ideas on how to use Lit2Go audio tracks in student movies.

Roy Winkelman is a 40+ year veteran teacher of students from every level kindergarten through graduate school. As the former Director of FCIT, he began the Center's focus on providing students with rich content collections from which to build their understanding. When not glued to his keyboard, Dr. Winkelman can usually be found puttering around his tomato garden in Pittsburgh. Questions about this post or suggestions for a future topic? Email me at winkelma@usf.edu. To ensure that your email is not blocked, please do not change the subject line. Thank you!

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