Monday, 1 May 2017

Life Lessons with Short Films & Nearpod

Last term I did an awesome lesson which used two of my favourite apps - Youtube and Nearpod.  As the term was coming to an end, I felt that my students needed to be reminded of the importance of acceptance, kindness, non-judgement and tolerance.  I was talking to one of my workmates, not sure of what to do on a Friday. She said that she often used YouTube as a starting point for writing.  She uses CGI short film animations.  This got me thinking about how I could use film to help teach some concepts that I felt my learners were forgetting.  Then I remembered The Present.

The Clip

The Present is a very powerful clip that my kids loved! We watched it twice before beginning our Nearpod. I chose to let it run through without stopping or asking questions because I wanted them to take in the film as a whole.


My first activity on Nearpod was using 'Collaborate' where students had to retell the most important bits of the film.  I was impressed by the level of engagement.  As always, I use their ideas as a starting point for further discussion/elaboration.


The next activity was an 'Open Ended Question'. This was an inference question, which asked students to think about why the mum wanted to give his son a present. The next activity was a 'Collaborate' asking Why did the boy get so angry when he noticed what was wrong with the dog? The students were able to come up with some insightful ideas for both questions.


Next, students shared their opinions on the boys reaction to dog, and whether it was right or wrong.

Author's Purpose

Lastly, students shared their ideas about what the message was that the author/creator was trying to tell their audience.

Creating a DLO

After all the discussion that was drawn from the Nearpod activity, my learners created DLOs to share their learning.  I let them create anything they wanted. They created Comics, Google Drawings, wrote poems, recounts and wrote explanation pieces.

Summing it up

Overall I was pretty pleased with how this lesson went.  My learners were really engaged and it created a great opportunity to discuss being grateful, kind and non-judgemental. They loved the film and Nearpod helped them to feel eager to share their ideas with the class.  Creating a DLO was a great way for me to see what they took away from the lesson. It was cool to see the broad range of DLOs created. 


  1. Thanks for sharing what looks like an informative and engaging lesson! I love how you gave the students an option of what DLO they would like to create, I particularly like the comic example! How/where did the student make the comic? Would love to try and include into my lessons. Look forward to reading about more of your lessons :)

    1. Thanks Georgia! It was good to give them the option because they could choose to communicate their learning/understanding in the way which suited them best. The comics were created from Pixton. Unfortunately you have to pay for it but you get a one month trial period so I used that last term. So far it is by far the best comic creator I have found :)


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