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Last Updated: Wednesday, 3 November, 2004, 00:50 GMT
Big Brother 'can help teachers'
Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine
Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine: "Sophisticated" technique
Techniques used in reality TV shows such as Big Brother and What Not To Wear should be taken up by a new channel for teachers, a report says.

Teachers' TV will offer professional help and advice for staff in England from next year.

The think tank Demos said it first had to attract viewers like entertainment shows on existing stations.

Teachers' TV, a 20m-a-year government-backed venture, should also raise "status, morale and profile".

'Sophisticated'

Many of the techniques used in reality TV were praised by Demos for presenting information in an informal and accessible way.

The way presenters Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine told participants on the BBC's What Not To Wear about clothes was "sophisticated".

For the show, subjects are sent into high street shops with video cameras and their clothing choices are discussed in a post-shopping analysis.

"This is a classic coaching technique based on watching, reviewing and trying out new approaches," the report says.

"Fly-on-the-blackboard" programmes looking at teachers as they work, Channel 4 Big Brother-style, might be another way of showing off good methods, it adds.

Teachers' TV had to be "watercooler TV" - meaning it was watched at home and discussed next day in the staffroom, Demos said.

It does not mention another Channel 4 hit - Teachers, described by its makers as an irreverent comedy drama which "continues to steer clear of anything remotely educational or politically correct".

The research was funded by the schools' communication unit of the Department for Education and Skills.

The new channel will be aired 24 hours a day on Sky and Freeview.




SEE ALSO:
Teacher channel to be broadcast on TV
12 Apr 03  |  Education


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