Cinemas, archives and festivals

Learning in cinemas – some questions

Many of us believe that the cinema is central to how people engage with and enjoy film. But we should still ask the question ‘What does seeing film in a cinema add to our understanding and experience of film?’ Throughout the next few steps we explore ways of opening up the cinema experience to young people, by working with schools and school curricula, but also by working directly with young people themselves.

Cinemas, archives and festivals

The following clip shows a montage of images of education events happening in a cinema. The images are taken from cinema education programmes all over the world, so they will share some features. But what are those common features? Are all cinema screens the same size, with the same degree of blackout, sound projection, seating orientation? Do all children and young people respond the same way to the cinema experience? Or might different groups face challenges and obstacles? In general, how easy is it to encourage young people to come to a cinema in an age when many of them are used to watching moving images on a small screens, in short bursts?

Also what about the differences between cinemas, settings, and audiences that are revealed by the images?


From the montage, what key similarities and differences do you see across ages, settings, communities, and countries?

Do you work with, or in, a cinema? What is your experience of young people as audiences? Is it easy to persuade them to come? And is the picture the same for very young children, for older children, and for teenagers?

Write your thoughts in the Notepad below.

My Notepad

Use this notepad feature to write down answers and your thoughts to questions posed throughout this resource.

Open Notepad

Use the Tag option to insert the name of this section as a reference before typing your notes.

You can Copy, Download or Email yourself these notes for future reference.