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The International Film Classroom – Overview

The stories the world tells through film transcend news broadcasts of current events and help us to understand the many ways people are alike, despite the barriers of language and political and religious ideology. The U.S. shares a rich cinematic history with other countries, including China. This shared heritage is a foundation on which our countries can build a relationship of cultural understanding, one that will directly affect the youth of each nation.

Film is a powerful and visual language. It is also a universal language. The International Film Classroom was developed by The Film Foundation in cooperation with IBM and the United States Department of State. The program engages middle and high school students in study of exceptional foreign films.

The goals of these teaching units are:

  • to increase awareness of and appreciation for foreign and American culture through meaningful film study in the classroom,
  • to initiate relationships and to promote on-going partnerships between arts and educational institutions both in the United States and in foreign countries, and
  • to introduce students to foreign language film study, providing visual literacy skills to assist in reading and interpreting moving images of other cultures.