Mrs. Juster's Virtual Classroom

  

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How to: Viewer's Response & Journal for Films


What is a viewer's response & journal?

A viewing journal, just like a reading journal, is a critical thinking tool that allows a student viewing a film to:

  • develop his visual literacy 
  • articulate the meaning of what he is seeing and experiencing when viewing a film
  • gain a full understanding of the text of the film 

What's in a viewing journal?

A viewing journal contains a heading which lists the title of the film, the director, the release date and the production company. 

The journal then records the viewer's observations (bulleted notes). Questions the viewer should keep in mind while watching a drama can be broken down into several categories:

Cinematography 

  • What kinds of images are you seeing? Are they soft and glowing with warmth or harsh and sharp? 
  • Does the camera move slowly from left to right or does it jump quickly? 
  • Does the film “feel” fast paced or relaxed?
  • What are the scene transitions like? Does the film fade to black between "chapters"?

Music

  • What’s the soundtrack like? Could it be identified with an era? 
  • Are themes repeated – like the bass “da-dum da-dum da-dum dum dum da-dum da-dum da-dum” in Jaws?  When and why is a theme repeated?

 Storyline

  • Who are the main characters? 

  • What's the primary conflict? How is it resolved?

  • Are there any sub-plots?

  • What's the overall theme? 

Storyline  - Differences between Written Version and Film Version

  • How different from the novel is this film version? 

  • Are characters/scenes missing or added?

  • Is the sequence of events the same as the novel?

  • Is the ending the same? 

  • Is the overall message the same? 

  • Do the actors interpret the characters in the same way you envisioned the characters when you read the book? How are they different than you imagined? How are they the same?  

Questions the viewer should keep in mind while watching a documentary are:

  • What is the main focus of this film?
  • What is the thesis of this film? What is it trying to prove or persuade the audience to believe?
  • What is the supporting evidence? How does the film prove the truth of the thesis?

 


Downloads and more... 

The Crucible 

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

Original Trailer

The Natural  

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

Original Trailer

Moby Dick (1998)

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

 

A Raisin in the Sun

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

Original Trailer

Death of a Salesman 

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

 Rocky

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

Original Trailer

The Grapes of Wrath 

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

Original Trailer

The Great Gatsby 

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

American Tall Tales & Legends: John Henry

Viewer's Response & Journal

Watch the full video and learn more about this legend here.

 

General Response

Viewer's Response & Journal

Cannery Row

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

The Old Man & the Sea

Viewer's Response & Journal

Overview

Original Trailer

                                          

                        

                 

              

 

 


Viewer's Response & Journal Scoring Rubric

Scoring Rubric for Viewing Journal & Response

Rubric Categories

A

B

C

D

F

LITERACY THROUGH READING

Response reflects a developing, engaged and in-depth understanding of the text/film.

Response reflects a developing and engaged understanding of the text/film.

Response reflects an adequate but limited understanding of the text/film.

Response reflects a minimal and disengaged understanding of the text/film.

Response  does not reflect or fails to make a meaningful effort to understand text/film.

LITERACY THROUGH WRITING:

Written expression reflects...

Response demonstrates mastery in conventions, organization, word choice and voice/tone.

Response is effective, revealing only minor, occasional lapses in conventions, organization, word choice and voice/tone.

Response needs improvement and reveals consistent errors in conventions, organization, word choice and voice/tone.  

Response reveals significant and consistent errors  in conventions, organization, word choice and voice/tone which reflect minimal effort.

Response reflects a failure to make a meaningful effort with conventions, organization, word choice and voice/tone.

Londonderry High School School-Wide Rubrics: Specified for Our Course Curriculum.

To receive credit, all responses must be authentic and original. Approved digital resources are linked to  our class website. See the LHS Code of Academic Integrity.