Sunday, June 16, 2024
The Supporting Act

The Supporting Act

by Mark Warner
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Ages: 5-11

This Christmas animation is an awwww-inducing story of a young girl, her dad and a special talent show.

Watch this video with your children and then try some of our teaching and activity ideas below.

Teaching Ideas and Resources:


  • Retell the story from the point of view of the girl or her dad.
  • Write a series of diary entries from the girl’s point of view at the following times:
    • When she first hears about the talent show,
    • When she begins rehearsing,
    • After she has shown the dance to her dad (but he was on the phone),
    • The morning of the talent show,
    • After the talent show has taken place.
  • Think of some questions that you would like to ask the girl and / or her dad at different points in the video.
  • Think of some speech / thought bubbles for the people at these points in the animation: 0:08, 0:12, 0:19, 0:24, 0:49, 0:50, 1:10, 1:16, 1:51, 1:53.
  • Write a review of the talent show for the school newspaper.
  • Write an interview with the girl for the school newspaper.
  • This video is called ‘The Supporting Act’. What does that mean? Could you use this title as the starting point for your own story?
  • Write a narrative version of this story.
  • Could you think of some narration / speech to accompany this story and make a play script based on it?
  • The film uses a lot of different settings (outside school, in the house, out shopping etc.). Choose two and write a description for each one.


  • Use publishing software to design a poster to advertise the Christmas Talent Show… or some tickets to give to the people who want to attend.
  • This video was made using a combination of stop-motion and computer animation. Could you use one (or both) of these techniques to make your own animation?
  • Use a programming tool (e.g. Scratch) to make a sprite dance to some music.


  • Create a comic strip that retells the story.
  • Look at the facial expressions of the characters at different points in the video. Use these freeze frames as the starting point for your own pictures of people showing different emotions.


  • The music in this animation is ‘Symphony’ by Clean Bandit and Zara Larsson. Why do you think this particular song was chosen? Would any other songs have been suitable?

Physical education

  • Could you choreograph and perform a dance to perform at a Christmas talent show?
  • Can you find out about different types of dance? Could you try to rehearse and perform some of them?

Religious education

  • The film shows the girl and her Dad preparing for Christmas. How do you prepare for celebrations?
  • Research the different ways that people prepare for (and celebrate) in different countries around the world.


  • Could you work with a group of others to plan and carry out your own talent show?
  • What does it mean to have ‘talent’? What talents do you have? How do people try and get better at their talents?
  • Pause the video at different points and look at the facial expressions of the characters. How are they feeling? How do you know?
  • Pause the video at 0:16 and discuss what you think the dad should do. Should he answer the phone or talk to his daughter about the show? Discuss what priorities are and how people sometimes have to balance different priorities at different times.
  • The girl is nervous at the start of her performance. Why do we feel nervous? What can we do to overcome our nerves?

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