YOUNGSTERS at three city schools got the chance to explore democracy through films.
Education charity Filmclub held a series of screenings and discussions in Sunderland schools, East Rainton Primary, Usworth Colliery Primary and Lambton Primary, as part of Parliament Week, an initiative aimed at raising awareness and engagement among children about parliamentary democracy.
This was the first time Parliament Week has been held and Fimclub said in the wake of the recent riots it was clear that teaching children about democracy and how they can contribute to it is vital.
A spokesman for the charity, said: “There are thousands of stories of people who have made a difference and film is a great medium for telling these stories.”
The event – Making A Difference – involved 10 classic and contemporary films, hand-picked to inspire young people of all ages to explore how democracy affects citizens and how they can contribute to it.
The titles included:
l Paper Clips, a moving documentary about students who set about collecting six million paper clips in memory of the Holocaust victims
l Danny, The Champion of The World, a father and son whose home is threatened
l Gandhi, Oscar-winning biopic of the Indian civil rights leader
l Milk, a portrayal of gay rights campaigner Harvey Milk.
The spokesman said: “Enabling children from all backgrounds to connect with ideas, issues and individuals they wouldn’t normally encounter is a key aim of Filmclub.
“Its involvement in the inaugural Parliament Week – and the effectiveness of film as a tool to engage young people – has been welcomed by Parliament’s Education Service.”
Launched in 2008, Filmclub helps schools set up and run film clubs for teachers and pupils to watch, discuss and review a diverse range of films, promoting learning in an informal setting.