The Story of Movies is a FREE interdisciplinary film literacy program for classroom use, created and distributed by The Film Foundation.

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We have to treat all these moving images coming at us as a language, to understand what we’re seeing and sort it all out.
– Martin Scorsese

Film Lesson Library

Activities for Students

A collection of lesson plans on a variety of film study topics.

  • Interpreting a Short Documentary Film
    Interpreting a Short Documentary Film
  • Writing About History Using Moving Images
    Writing About History Using Moving Images
  • Nominating a Film to the National Registry
    Nominating a Film to the National Registry
  • Harold Lloyd's [i]The Freshman[/i]
    Harold Lloyd's [i]The Freshman[/i]
  • Exploring Chinese Cinema
    Exploring Chinese Cinema
  • Film Piracy
    Film Piracy

Check out our article “Learning to Read Movies,” published by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) in its recent book on media literacy. Go to Teacher Resources at the top of this page and click on Professional Development to download.

  • "The Film Foundation has created this amazing vehicle; a course that gives our students a three dimensional education experience that is like no other, to transport them to infinite life learning possibilities and experiences."
    11th grade Communication Arts Teacher Cardinal Hayes High School | Bronx, NY
  • "The Story of Movies remains one of the best instructional resources I have ever come across."
    8th grade Technology Teacher Camino Nuevo Charter Academy | Silverlake, CA
  • "We are all very excited about this opportunity. Excited is really an understatement. This is a great way for our kids to get a very unique education in film studies."
    6th–7th grade Language Arts Teacher Home School Cooperative | O’Fallon, MO
  • "The lesson plans are amazing. They are laid out so clearly that all I need to do is to follow the script. I really like what my students are learning with this curriculum. They are not reading a dry analysis of a variety of different movies."
    7th–8th grade Media Teacher Nibley Park School | Salt Lake City, UT
  • "This was exciting and invigorating for me to teach and really got the kids thinking in profound and complex ways!"
    8th grade English and Drama Teacher Tapp Middle School | Powder Springs, GA
  • "I've been using the Story of Movies for 4 years now. I first heard about the program when I brought up a Film Studies class as an ELA elective/intervention. We strive to teach Film Literacy for all our students, along with production."
    6th–8th grade Media Studies Teacher Morton Middle School | Fall River, MA
  • "I love the program. I teach “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” to my 7th grade class and “To Kill A Mockingbird” to my 8th grade as part of Civics class. I integrate the curriculum so students learn to see parallels between disciplines and learning."
    6th–8th grade Social Studies Teacher Montessori at Roseborough | Mt. Dora, FL
  • Introducing The Story of Movies
  • Portraits of America: Democracy on Film
  • Coming Soon - The American West and the Western Film Genre