Tad Gram Style team roll again

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Tadcaster Grammar School English teacher Adam Dawson attracted national media attention in 2012 with Tad Gram Style, a parody of worldwide popular song sensation Gangnam Style and raised thousands for Children In Need.

With more than a quarter of a million hits on YouTube, £5,000 in the coffers, appearances on television and local radio, Tad Gram Style put Adam Dawson and the school on the map.

His next offering - Lost for Words – Why to Study English at A Level - was not so memorable but Mr Dawson is hoping that his new venture will capture the imagination of the public and help other schools in the process.

Production is well underway for a 20-minute feature film entitled Superman and Paula Brown’s New Snowsuit, adapted from a short story by Sylvia Plath.

This is one of a number of short stories being studied by Year 9 students, who are ultimately responsible for the film’s production under the guidance of Mr Dawson.

“The film is looking incredible so far and I am not just saying that, with students operating lighting, equipment, cameras and sound by themselves,” said Mr Dawson.

The story is about a girl in 1941, who dreams about being a superhero and acts out daring conquests.

“But when faced with the reality of her peers turning against her for something she didn’t do, she realises that the real world is a much harder place to be.

Set against the backdrop of WWII, it is about childhood innocence being taken away by the harsh reality of conflict (in war and in the playground).

“Academically the film is about promoting English by raising the profile of interesting literature, improving problem solving skills in a real context, working as a team and also giving the students a chance to gain a level for speaking and listening,” explained Mr Dawson.

“I am going to hold an awards ceremony and a screening of the film for parents when it is complete, produce a DVD, as well as a documentary made by the students about the making of the film and hopefully publish it online for other schools to access,” said an enthusiastic Mr Dawson.

“Who knows, maybe even enter it into a national film competition.”

Adam Dawson, who is a musician in his own right, will be appearing as a guest artist at Copmanthorpe Carnival on Saturday, presenting a selection of his own material and no doubt Tad Gram Style will be on the list.