Using Comics and Superheroes to teach grammar - Brian Boyd

In my webinar I aim to outline a step-by-step guide for running a successful comic project, taking students from the earliest brainstorming sessions to the published comic. I plan to include plenty of practical tips, identify potential pitfalls (and how to avoid them) and make suggestions for exploiting the process for the maximum educational value.

From single panel cartoons, such as Gary Larson’s Far Side and multi-panel strips like Charles Schulz’s Peanuts through to full blown comic books, featuring the adventures of colourful heroes and heroines, comics have a tremendous capacity to engage and motivate students, fire the imagination and bring an additional fun element to lessons.

Comics span all genres and cater to all age groups; the sequential art provides wonderful visual clues for emerging readers, pulling them in, bringing the story alive and guiding them through the narrative. But perhaps the most enjoyable and rewarding comic-related activity is for students to create their own comics. Working in groups, they generate ideas, build worlds, design characters, plan, negotiate, discuss, script, draft, revise, present – all kinds of collaborative tasks, using real world skills.

About the presenter: Brian Boyd grew up in Glamorgan, South Wales. He did a B(Ed) in Primary Education at Goldsmith’s College in London and has been teaching English at British Council in Bangkok for thirteen years. He has been reading comics since he could read.

Brian has written and drawn Grammarman (External website) - a comic for ELT students and their teachers - since he created it in 2005. Grammarman has seen print in Thailand, Malaysia, Brunei, China, Russia, Argentina and Canada and also appears regularly on the onestopenglish site. You can also see more information and updates from Brian Boyd on facebook.

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