Sunday, June 16, 2024
The Greatest Gift

The Greatest Gift

by Mark Warner
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Ages: 5-11

As the first snow falls, Dave is caught up in the Christmas whirlwind – all he wants to do is to get home to spend time with his family, but all sorts of Christmas duties and calamities are getting in his way. That is until he sees a gingerbread man on his daughter’s bedside table that they’ve made to look like him. That gives him a genius brainwave…

Teaching Ideas and Resources:


  • Imagine that you could clone yourself. Write a story about the adventures that would take place!
  • Write an email from Dad’s point of view, describing his busy day.
  • Pause the video at different points and think of words / phrases to describe how dad might be feeling. Can you think of speech / thought bubbles for him?
  • Create a persuasive poster to promote one of the toys that dad makes at the Toy Factory.
  • Write a shopping list of gifts for your family (see dad’s at 0:21).
  • Imagine that you could be in two places at once. Where would your other self go while you were at school?
  • Design your own Christmas advert.
  • Describe the events of Christmas from the point of view of his daughter.
  • Write a letter of complaint to the train company about Dad’s terrible train journey.
  • Write a job description for dad’s job.
  • Write a recipe for making gingerbread men.
  • Describe the settings of the video, including the family house, the train, the toy factory and the shop.
  • Write your own story based on the title ‘The Greatest Gift’.


  • In this advert, each second of film was created using 25 frames of animation. How many frames are needed for 1 minute of film? How many frames were needed for the entire film (which lasts 3 minutes and 35 seconds)?
  • Create a timetable that shows the things that dad has to do in his busy day.


  • Make and decorate gingerbread men.


  • How has this advert been made? Can you find out more about stop-frame animation and try making your own? Watch this ‘behind the scenes’ video for more information:

  • This ‘behind the scenes’ video shows the 3D modelling and 3D printing that the animation company used to create the different versions of dad’s head. Could you use graphics software to create models of your own face showing different expressions?
  • Make a video to advertise one of the toys that dad makes at the Toy Factory.

Design Technology

  • Make a model ‘clone’ version of yourself.
  • Design some new toys that could be created at the Toy Factory.


  • Make a picture of the inside of the Toy Factory.
  • Draw the story of the advert as a comic strip.


  • Write a new verse for the song.


  • Make a map of Dad’s journey.

Religious education

  • Discuss how Christians celebrate Christmas and why it is important to them.


  • What is the greatest gift that you could give your family?
  • Which people are busier than normal at Christmas time (emergency services, shop workers, postal workers etc.)? How do you think they feel about it?
  • Sainsbury’s are selling items based on this advert in aid of the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity. Find out about the work of the charity by visiting their website.
  • Why do you think that supermarkets raise money for charity?

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