I remember classroom films and/or educational filmstrips from my school years with great fondness. The Red Balloon and Leo Beuerman were among my favorites. I was so thrilled when the classroom lights dimmed and the librarian, with her polyester pantsuits and air of intrigue, appeared with a 16mm projector atop a clanky cart. Click-click, loop-loop. Tiny specks of dust in the rays of light beaming from the lens. I could have stayed in that classroom forever…
These pictures from an elementary school outside of Boston, circa 1979, feature a teacher (in a polyester pantsuit) clicking through slides in an old slide projector.
Classroom Films from the 1970s, 80s
I shared this photo on the Facebook group where members discussed memorable classroom films from the 1970s and 1980s. Click here to join the conversation. The following is a list of films the members recalled with fear and/or delight:
- Free To Be You and Me
- Born Free
- One Too Many
- Donald in Mathmagicland
- Red Asphalt
- Miracle of Birth
- Charlie the Lonesome Cougar
- The Rise and Fall of the Great Lakes
- Toot, Whistle, Pluck and Boom
- Cosmic Zoom
- Too Tough To Care
- The Last Prom
- The Three Cabelleros
- A Cosmic Christmas
- The Day After
I attended more than 10 schools in 13 years and must have seen The Red Balloon five times before the 6th grade. I loved it so, so much! Leo Beuerman was a short documentary about a disabled man from Lawrence, Kansas. It was made in 1969 and was nominated for an Academy Award.
Classroom films were the highlight of my educational experience. I never understood why teachers didn’t show them more frequently. I learned so much from them and they stuck with me forever. In particular, the dated classroom films featuring drug addiction stories, which I saw in junior high had a big impact on me. After seeing them, there was no way I was ever touching drugs.
Do you have any favorite classroom films from your schooldays?
Photo Credit: Bill Fasulo