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6 November - This week the Estonian Cinemabus and Puppet Film Studio were at the Kids Euro Festival in Washington teaching American kids and teachers about filmmaking. Their stay was organised by the Estonian Embassy in Washington.
Estonia was represented in the main programme (for ages 6-12 years) of the biggest kids’ festival ever to be held in Washington by the Puppet Film Studio. In the workshops that took place in schools in Washington and the surrounding area, clips from puppet films were shown and the kids were guided through the making of a puppet film. “The theme for all our workshops was the sea and the customs associated with it. We were pleasantly surprised by how interested and enthusiastic the children were,” said Mait Laas, the director of Estonian Puppet Film.
The Cinemabus, which presented extremely successfully last year, also participated in the festival. This year at the festival they organised seminars for teachers to show opportunities for using film as a method of instruction. Many of the teachers that participated in the seminars felt that this type of training should be part of the official teacher training programme, because film can be used very successfully in teaching. In addition, it also develops the teacher’s own creativity and provides inspiration for teaching.
A free screening also took place within the framework of the festival. Anybody who was interested could watch the children’s puppet films “Miriam’s Stories” and “Carrot” and take part in workshops.
The Kids Euro Festival being held from 15 October to 10 November is taking place in Washington, D.C. for the second year in a row, as last year it was more successful than anyone had anticipated. The idea for the festival came from France, which was the European Union presidency for the second half of 2008, and all 27 EU member states are participating. There are 150 free performances taking place within the event. The patron of the festival is First Lady of the USA Michelle Obama.
FM Review

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