Vagabond - A beautiful animation to use in class!

I stumbled across this fantastic video and straight away saw the potential for it in the classroom. Here is the short animation -

Some ideas for use in the classroom -

  • Play the first 12 seconds, ask the children to listen to the sounds, what can they hear? Where is the story set? 
  • Pause at 25 seconds, what do we notice about the setting? Where might it be? What words describe the people in the video?
  • Pause at 54 seconds, who do we think this man is? How old do you think he is? What might his job be?
  • Pause at 1:15 - What is the relationship between the man and his dog? How does the man feel when he sees the dog? How does he show this? Does the dog feel the same way? What might the alarm signal? Something good or bad? Why?
  • Pause 1:30 - Do we think the man is rich or poor? Why are they wearing masks? What might happen?
  • Pause at 1:53 - When is this story set - past, present or future? What time of day is it now? How do we know? 
  • At 2:03 - What do we think is going to happen?
  • At 2:40 can you think of words to describe how the man is feeling? How does he show this?
  • At 2:42 - What part of the city is he in? Who created the statue? Who is it? What are these metal boxes? What are they doing? Where are they going?
  • 2:58 - The man ends up on the floor? What does that show us about his status within the city?
  • At 3:15 - What are the youths doing? Why is it different to graffiti we usually see? Do they know it is wrong? How do you know?
  • At 3:32 - Why don't they want to help initially, why do they help him? 
  • At 3:46 - What is the weather like? How do we know?
  • At 4:38 - Where is he now? In what ways have the creators tried to personify the factory?
  • At 5:00 - Ask, how is he feeling? What does he need to do? How may he do it?
  • At 5:40 - What motivates the man? What stops? Do we have a better understanding of the setting? Is the dog saved?
  • At 6:00 - What has changed? Has it changed in a positive or negative way? 
  • At 6:45 - How does the man feel about the new world they have seen? How does the dog show his appreciation? What does the train metaphor represent? Is it a surprise? Does it all make sense now but would it have been as effective if we knew that at the start?


  • Write a diary as the man 
  • Write a diary as the dog.
  • Write a first person recount as the man.
  • Use scenes to build tension
  • Use scenes to develop show not tell writing
  • Use different scenes to work on figurative language - similes, metaphors, alliteration and personification.
  • Create direct speech conversations between the characters.
  • Write a report about the 'train city.'
  • Write a persuasive review of the film.
  • Create a descriptive comparison of the scene at the start of the film with the image at the end.
By all means, please share any other ideas for using the fantastic short film. 


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