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In this step we’re going to look at ways in which loglines (also known as taglines) and synopses can be used to hone children’s writing. Creating loglines and synopses can really help a child’s ability to understand a text and summarise key information.

A logline or tagline condenses a film for the audience, usually into just a single sentence. In the poster above, you can see the logline “The cat is back” which summarises the movie in a single line. Loglines are really fun to create and you can even write your own comic versions for your favourite films. For example, can you tell what film could have the following logline?

Girl meets boy - iceberg doesn’t care.

A synopsis is a brief summary of a film in a short paragraph or two. It condenses a film into its key plot points. Which film do you think had the following synopsis?

A meek and alienated little boy finds a stranded extraterrestrial. He has to find the courage to defy the authorities and help the alien to return to its home planet.

Please create a logline of your own and add it to the comments below, try to keep it to a line or two. We will be exploring synopses further in the following step.

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This article is from the free online course:

Teaching Literacy Through Film

The British Film Institute (BFI)

Course highlights Get a taste of this course before you join:

  • Why use film to improve literacy?
    Why use film to improve literacy?

    Watch this short video to discover how and why learning through film improves literacy.

  • Foley sound
    Foley sound

    This step is an introduction to Foley art, and has a video clip with Foley artist, John Fewell.

  • Stills from The Girl and the Fox that show different shot sizes.
    Developing writing through camera shots

    Linking camera shots and positions to still images in this activity, can provide a great writing stimulus in creating narrative.

  • Record and Playback
    Record and Playback

    An introduction to the technique of Record and Playback, a simple but very effective tool for curricular learning.

  • Two images each showing samples of a shoe box set design.
    Shoebox set design

    Making a shoe box set takes your pupils on a filmmaking journey that produces literacy outcomes, and is a great tool for assessment. PDF provided.