In 2012, AFF expanded its Young Adult Education Program (YAEP), established in 2000—which mainly consisted of lectures and discussions—to use African cinema as a spark for learning and artistic expression. Led by an experienced teaching artist and professional filmmaker, AFF’s filmmaking workshops teach students African film history and culture and the basics of film production in a collaborative environment. Students are taught concepts of form, style and technique, as well as terminology, which allow them to understand and express the ways in which artistic works communicate certain ideas and operate within specific cultural and historical contexts. Students are challenged to channel the newly acquired information and ideas into expressing personal viewpoints and producing a relevant work inspired by the experience. By having filmmakers participate, students can learn firsthand about the artists’ intentions, helping students gain competence in visual literacy and an understanding of how filmmakers’ choices shape how stories are told.
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