Microsoft teams up with BBC Earth and Broadclyst Primary School to provide schools with an immersive and creative way of teaching children with ‘the most ambitious 3D nature film ever made’
At BETT today, Microsoft is launching a series of educational aids it has developed in partnership with teaching school Broadclyst Primary in Devon, using BBC Earth Films’ 3D spectacular, Enchanted Kingdom. These introduce ‘project based learning’ into the classroom – a method of teaching that encourages students to improve their engagement in the curriculum by exploring the world around them, developing solutions to challenges in a creative and collaborative learning environment. Broadclyst has developed the lesson plans within the education aids and tested them in a classroom environment. They cover topics from across the curriculum from the humanities to the sciences, and coding. From today, this innovative new project based learning toolkit is now available to schools and educators up and down the country.
Enchanted Kingdom is ‘the most ambitious 3D nature film ever made’, taking audiences on a journey of discovery through the wilds of Africa. Narrated by Idris Elba, star of The Wire, Luther and Oscar-nominated Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, the movie brings together cutting edge 3D technology, Hollywood production expertise and the best nature film making to bring to life the incredible wonders, stories and characters of our planet. Enchanted Kingdom, set to be released in cinema and on Blu-ray, 3D Blu-ray and DVD in the UK later this year, was released in Japan in 2014 and was the third top grossing film of the year.
Jonathan Bishop, Headteacher at Broadclyst, explains: “Our partnership with Microsoft has allowed us to extend the magic of this film to the classroom. The broad range of landscapes, creatures and behaviours covered in the film make it an incredibly rich resource for education.”
“The projects we have developed have captured the imagination of our students. As an example, one of the scenes in the film is set in the ‘frozen spires’ of Mount Kenya. We tasked our students with designing a camera case that could withstand such a frozen environment and encouraged them to use software packages to work together and create a solution. Students use Microsoft cloud-based collaboration tools such as Office 365, Office Mix, OneNote and Skype in the Classroom to debate, discuss, problem solve, and connect with other classrooms. There are eight phases in the film, which takes place in Africa, set in some of the wettest, driest, hottest and coldest environments the world has to offer – the teaching aids cover all of this not only put the onus on the students think more deeply about the world around them but also teach them the value of working collaboratively.”
Neil Nightingale, Director of Enchanted Kingdom & Creative Director of BBC Earth adds: “When we set out to produce Enchanted Kingdom, our vision was to create the most enchanting nature film ever made and we wanted it to change the way that our audience sees the world. Partnering with Microsoft enables us to take this vision of the film one step further and encourage children to think differently about the world around them and challenge themselves to discover more and problem solve.”
Microsoft is also enabling teachers to connect, collaborate and share Enchanted Kingdom projects on the Microsoft Educator Network. This will host a community of educators all looking to take advantage of new approaches to teaching and learning, using technology to help students develop more relevant skills for the 21st century. Many of the Enchanted Kingdom projects also feature apps from the Windows Store, which can be used to view film images, videos and reference materials. There will also be a collection of Enchanted Kingdom lessons on Skype in the Classroom where educators can post their own Enchanted Kingdom-based learning sessions to connect and collaborate with other schools across the UK and internationally. They’ll also be able to find BBC film makers to join their classrooms as guest speakers through Skype. Microsoft and BBC Earth will host additional supporting content for teachers and schools such as live Q&As with the film makers.
To read more about Enchanted Kingdom please follow this link