Using media in the classroom to engage students and enhance understanding

The accessibility of media and ease with which it can now be used has created an opportunity for educators to seamlessly incorporate it into their daily teaching strategies. Today's students use media at an unprecedented level. When appropriately exploited, using media in the classroom can create an environment where students are eager and invested in their learning. This can lead to an increase in understanding difficult concepts and improve knowledge retention. The experimental method used for this study involved splitting a fifth-grade classroom in two groups and providing a media intervention to only half of the students. Using movie clips from The Wizard of Oz that corresponded to literary terms, this study examined media-centered teaching strategies. The scores of the students who received the intervention were compared with the students who did not receive it. The resulting data was used to objectively analyze the effect of using media, particularly in conjunction with how easily it was incorporated into the lesson. The conclusion highlighted how much media helped the students' successfully increase their understanding of storytelling terminology and the ease with which this task was accomplished in presenting the lesson. Key words: Media, Film, The Wizard of Oz, Engagement, Retention, Motivation