Operation Wild – ‘Sick Turtle’ Video
By Penelope Fisher
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This video “Sick Turtle” is a short clip from a Discovery Channel television series called Operation Wild. Due to the fact that is unavailable on YouTube, it is unable to be embedded into this wiki, but by following this link http://planetgreen.discovery.com/videos/operation-wild/ and clicking on the “Sick Turtle” link, the video may be viewed. The video shows the Officers of Florida’s Wildlife racing against time to save a sick Loggerhead Sea Turtle. Each turtle saved helps keep the population of the species from becoming endangered.

The video supports students as they work towards the English outcome RS2.7 Discusses how writers relate to their readers in different ways, how they create a variety of worlds through language and how they use language to achieve a wide range of purposes (Board of Studies NSW, 2007, p. 33) as the filmmakers have used a variety of visual, written and audio techniques that the students can come to understand through the viewing of the video. The video also has the added benefit of assisting the students through its content which is in line with the HSIE unit of work that they will be working on. Pictures, as well as words, carry meaning, and we live in a semiotic world of ‘signs’, where images and symbols have meaning (Winch, Johnston, March, Ljungdahl, & Holliday, 2006, p. 506). Film has the ability to carry even more meaning than a single picture or phrase as it has the ability to combine many literacies at once, which all carry meaning. Through analysing this video, students will learn to identify a number of different literacies and techniques; all which carry meaning and significance of their own and have a unique purpose. In order to be ‘multiliterate’, children must be involved in viewing, creating and critiquing multimodal texts, which can include spoken, written, visual, aural and interactive aspects (Unsworth, 2001). Powerfully persuasive images and multimedia need to be met with equally powerful tools for discussion, critique and analysis (Callow, 2006, p. 7). By viewing this video, which is not trying to persuade the students in a potentially harmful way, they will be able to develop these skills of discussion, critique and analysis of film, which will set them in good stead for understanding how filmmakers can achieve a range of purposes through their texts, and will help them become aware of how they may be manipulated by this ability in the future, and how films can be powerful instruments of persuasion for good also.


Operation Wild - 'Sick Turtle' Video


Board of Studies NSW. (2007). English K-6 syllabus. Sydney: BOS.
Callow, J. (2006). Images, politics and multilieracies: Using a visual metalanguage. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy, 29(1), 7-23
Unsworth, L. (2001). Teaching Multiliteracies Across the Curriculum: Changing Contexts of Text and Image in Classroom Practice. Buckingham, England: Open University
Winch, G., Johnston, R. R., March, P., Ljungdahl, L., & Holliday, M. (2006). Literacy: Reading, writing and children’s literature (3rd ed.). South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.