When Nathan sees a strange light in the sky, he goes into the forest to investigate. To his surprise, he meets an unexpected guest and teaches her about Christmas.
Watch this video with your children and then try some of our teaching and activity ideas below.
Teaching Ideas and Resources:
- Write descriptions of two of the four settings in the video (the bus, the forest, the neighbour’s garden and Nathan’s home). What are the similarities and differences between them?
- Write an eyewitness account of Skye’s spaceship landing.
- Create a social media post about the film.
- The official hashtag for the film is #UnexpectedGuest. Make a list of other possible hashtags.
- Stop the film at 0:36. Create thought bubbles for the characters.
- Write some dialogue between Skye and Nathan.
- Write a narration for a scene in the video.
- Draw a comic strip showing how Skye got to Earth.
- Listen to the audio description for the advert and ask the children to write their own. If you want to give them a written copy, cut and paste the transcript from YouTube. It can be accessed from the three dots to just beneath the video.
- Invent a new title for the video.
- Watch the video with the subtitles on. Expand the descriptions to create interesting noun phrases. For example, how could you expand “twig snapping” at 0:14?
- Create a storyboard of the video.
- Write the story from the viewpoint of one of the minor characters, such as Nathan’s neighbour or his sister.
- How many triangles can you find in this Christmas tree?
- Investigate drawing stars without taking your pencil off the paper in this NRICH activity.
- Ask the children to cost out decorating a tree or a house. For example, if they needed to buy a 10-metre length of lights (£15.99), a box of baubles (£4.25) and two packs of tinsel (£3 per pack), how much would it cost?
- Create a fact file about snow – this Met Office page is a good place to start your research.
- Create an electrical circuit to light up a bulb on a playdough Christmas tree!
- Watch from 1:35 to 1:45 in The Making of Unexpected Guest video and use SketchUp or another program to create a 3D spaceship.
- Watch the section of the Making of Unexpected Guest video from 2:07 to 2:17, and try filming someone moving using the same method. What difference does it make to the video if the camera or device filming is moving or if it is still?
- Design your own spaceship
- Design a Christmas decoration that uses electricity.
- Design a Christmas Jumper.
- Look at some art that shows celestial objects moving through the sky, such as The Great Comet of 1680 Over Rotterdam and the Bayeux Tapestry. What are the similarities and differences between them and Skye’s landing in the video?
- Finish the picture of a Christmas tree in these templates.
- Compose a piece of music to soundtrack the video.
- Listen to some music inspired by space, such as Hans Zimmer’s music for Interstellar or Vangelis’ Rosetta Timeline.
- Compare the original version of the song together in Electric Dreams with the version in the advert. How has the song been changed? Which version do you prefer?
- Research the history of Christmas traditions.
- In the video, Nathan’s family follow some Christmas traditions, such as putting up a tree and eating mince pies. What traditions do you have in your family for celebrations?
- Discuss whether Nathan should have stolen food for Skye.
- How do you think Nathan and Skye felt when they first met? Can you remember how you felt when you first met one of your friends?