The Present

Age Range: 5 - 16

Genre(s): Mystery

A boy is given a gift which changes how he feels about the world around him. Watch this delightful short film with your children and try some of our suggested teaching ideas and classroom activities.

Teaching Ideas and Resources:

English

  • Pause the video at different points and think of some speech / thought bubbles that you could add to each frame of the animation.
  • Create a character profile about the boy. How would you describe him? Does your opinion of him change throughout the story?
  • Write your own story with the title 'The Present'.
  • Rewrite the story in the form of a narrative.
  • Retell the story from the boy's (or the puppy's) point of view.
  • Write a new story about an adventure that the two friends have together next.
  • Imagine that you were the boy's mum. Make a list of 'for' and 'against' arguments about buying a new puppy for your son.
  • Write a set of instructions to teach people how to look after a pet.
  • Mute the sound on the video and add your own narration to describe what happens.
  • Create a persuasive poster to raise awareness of different types of animal cruelty.
  • Imagine that you could interview the boy. What questions would you ask him? How might he respond?
  • Think of some questions that you would like to ask the creators of this animation.

Science

  • Create a fact file about a pet. How does it behave? What food does it eat? How should its owner care for it? See the RSPCA's site for an example.

Computing

  • Make a trailer to promote this short film to others.
  • Could you create your own animated version of this story?
  • Make a game about a dog that has to catch a ball.

Art

  • This short film is based on a comic strip. Could you create your own comic strip that retells this story?
  • Read the original comic strip here.

Music

  • Listen to the film's soundtrack without looking at the picture. What do you think it might be about?
  • Could you compose your own soundtrack for this film?
  • Could you choose a different song to accompany the credits? Which song would be most appropriate? Why?

Physical education

  • Find out about the Paralympics and investigate the achievements of athletes with disabilities.

PSHE

  • Why doesn't the boy want to go outside at the beginning of the story? Discuss your ideas with a partner.
  • Pause the video at different points (e.g. 0.09, 0.44, 1.05, 2.40 and 3.10) and describe how each character is feeling. How do you know?
  • What does it mean to be disabled? What types of disabilities are there and how do they affect different people?
  • Investigate the achievements of disabled people around the world.

Comments

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Teresa Glynn

I would love to use this in my Spanush class. Can it be reproduced without the dialogue but maintaining the sound effects? The speech bubble idea is wonderful - maybe a series of screen prints for students to work on, before watching the animation a second time.

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