Monday, December 9, 2013

Short documentaries for the Spanish class: Other cultures

We should not understimate the potential of resources which have been translated into languages from the original ones. They are great resources for a Bilingual or IB program and we can use the Spanish subtitled version to learn more about other cultures.

El manáby Artal and Carrascal, is a short documentary from Colombia. The narrator tells us about his life as a Wayúu. The Wayúus are an ethnic group from La Guajira peninsula, in the border between Colombia and Venezuela. Surrounded by the desert they have kept their language, culture and laws up to our days. However, globalization is affecting them now in unexpected ways.

Balthasar by Joanot Cortés, a young director from Spain. In Mozambique the effects from the European colonisation and the civil war are still present. However, there are projects that bring hope to the most vulnerable ones, the children. "A nossa Escola" is a pedagogical project between the Universidade Beira Interior (Portugal) and the elementary school Bairro Triunfo in Mozambique. Balthasar wants to recite the poem that he learnt in the best possible way. He rehearses the verses and then he delivers them in a outstanding way. We can listen to a poem that embodies the wish for a better future for all children in his country and around the world. The information about the short was taken from this blog.

Djenneba, by José Manuel Herraiz. This is another short documentary that shows the hope for a better future for Djenneba. She is an albino young girl in Mali, one the poorest countries in the world. Despite her condition, despite the environment where she grew up, she has not given up and still thinks a bright future is waiting for her.

In this link, we can also watch the short film and learn about the reasons that moved the director to create it. He is planning a second part and I can´t wait to see his second short film about Djenneba´s life: Buscando a Djenneba.
These are three short documentaries that took part in Notodofilmfest, the film festival I have mentioned in previous posts. They show a different reality for our students and can trigger interesting discussions in our class and they can also be used in research projects .  They are good examples to make students aware that Spanish can be a working tool to learn about other realities, not only Hispanic cultures.