Marat Sargsyan

Implementing local organization – Film and Media Education Centre Meno avilys

Programme start year – 2016 

Media literacy has become more relevant in forming the attitudes, values, and beliefs of many young people. However, media literacy as a subject is not integrated into the Lithuanian school curriculum. The British Council in Lithuania, together with its partner Meno avilys, has implemented the Big Small Screens project, which helps develop media literacy skills amongst the students and teachers of secondary schools in Lithuania. 

Together with media experts and partners in schools, the project organises workshops for students and teachers who receive skills and information on the different sources and kinds of media that are prevalent in modern-day society. The first phase of the project took place in 2016 and received a very positive evaluation from teachers, students and various media industry representatives, along with our institutional partners – the National Education Development Centre, Ministry of Education and Science of Lithuania.

The project has also developed methodical material for teachers, covering 6 audiovisual media forms and areas: cinema, advertising, social networks, television, computer games, and multimedia journalism. Each part includes a specific area of media briefly introduced and two cases analysed. Every case is accompanied by a lesson plan and tools for teachers to educate their students.  

During the lockdown in Lithuania, nine virtual lessons – creative workshops about the film, advertising, and television, media – were created. These lessons allow you to create audiovisual media product from the initial idea to post-production.

Since the beginning of the project in 2016, 88 schools and more than 9 000 people have been reached by the project activities:

- the project has implemented 21 training sessions and creative workshops for more than 275 teachers with media education experts from the UK and Lithuania. These teachers have gained the skills and tools needed for the critical analysis of different media products and have developed 21st-century skills

- 57 creative student workshops with media industry professionals from all over Lithuania have been conducted. More than 1100 participants have developed their creativity, critical thinking, communication, collaboration and technical (filming, coding, editing, etc.) skills

- 180 audiovisual media products (short films, commercials, TV series, computer games, etc.) have been created by students

- a huge network of teachers and media industry experts have been involved in the project activities, helping to disseminate their knowledge and expertise

- 3 annual “Media festivals” have been held. Each year more than 3000 participants take part in “Media festival” events that involve activities such as screenings, discussions, contests, exhibitions, meetings with media professionals, master classes, creative workshops conducted by project participants, and much more. These festivals have generated real and lasting engagement from students, teachers, and local community members and have provided them with a better understanding of media literacy as a subject and as a tool for bringing community members together.

In October 2020, 15 short media literacy lessons series aired on Lietuvos Rytas television channel. These lessons invite the audience to understand screen culture and audiovisual media.