Seeing things from a different perspective

I am a big fan of asking children to write stories from different points of views. I think it is a challenging way for children to create stories. One form of this method is writing stories as inanimate objects, for example I recently posted this picture on my Facebook page, showing Mona Lisa's view and think this would be a great writing stimulus -


Recently, I viewed an advert for SSE Energy Supplies and think it would make an amazing writing stimulus -


Here are a few ideas for how you could use this advert in class -

Discussion - Reading Skills
  • Watch the first 10 seconds, listen carefully to the sounds? Where is this story set to begin with? What time of day is it? How do you know?
  • How do people react to the Orangutan roaming the city streets? Why do you think no-one pays much attention? This could lead into a discussion about people being too busy to notice amazing things around them - this video discusses this.
  • Pause at 25 seconds, what is the Orangutan in awe of? Why?
  • At 27 seconds, how does the Orangutan feel towards the escalator? How do you know?
  • Discuss the other things that the Orangutan is impressed with? Do we ever look at these things in the same way? Why is the Orangutan so bewildered by it all? At 1:05, how do we know the Orangutan is impressed with everything? 
  • At 1:17 who is the only person to notice the Orangutan? Why do you think he does?
  • What is it that the Orangutan is so amazed by? Electricity/Energy.
Writing Opportunities
  • Children could write a first person recount as the Orangutan. The fact that the Orangutan doesn't speak throughout therefore all his emotions are displayed by his actions creates a great opportunity to develop children writing. 
  • Ask the children to pretend to be the Orangutan at the end of the video when he returns to his child. Challenge them to describe what he has seen on his adventure but do it in a way so that the baby Oranguatan can understand. We couldn't say 'Lightbulb' as the baby would have never seen or heard of one so how could we describe it so the baby could picture it - a great way to develop similes and metaphors. Ask the children to read their efforts to you, the teacher, who could pretend to be the baby. In role, you could then question the descriptions if you think the baby wouldn't understand.
  • What if the Orangutan was to visit the school? What do you think it would be fascinated by? Write a story as the Orangutan visiting the school.
  • Write a poem about how much we take things for granted - have you ever noticed....
  • Write a newspaper article about the Orangutan roaming the busy city streets, interview eye witnesses.
  • Research and create non-chronological reports about Orangutans. 
Of course, if you have any other ideas for how you would use this video please feel free to share in the comments. 

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