Ethos Education

Storks: Our Sacred Duty

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Assembly Objective:

  • What is our sacred duty? This assembly explores what the Bible teaches about work.

Film:

  • Storks (Warner Home Video, 2016) certificate U, click here to buy the DVD online.

Bible:

Supporting Values Education:

  • Mutual respect and tolerance. Throughout this assembly, a Christian perspective on the nature of work is presented that challenges a prevailing culture of over-work for purely financial reward.

OPENING ACTIVITY

What’s My Line? (Quiz)

  • What’s My Line? was the name of one of TV’s first ever quiz shows. In the show, a panel of celebrities had to guess the occupation of a series of mystery guests by asking questions that could only be answered by either ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. Each mystery guest performed a quick mime to provide a clue. Recreate the quiz show.
  • You could chose a ‘celebrity’ panel from your audience or allow the whole audience to put questions to your mystery guests. Your mystery guests are drawn from the audience and provided with a card informing them of their occupation. Alternatively, you could ask the mystery guest to talk about their profession without mentioning its name. The occupations on the Occupation Cards include: farmer, ambulance driver, teacher, pilot, police officer, vet, surgeon, painter, pest controller, car mechanic. Play the game for as long as it maintains the children’s interest.

FILM CLIP 1

  • Play the first clip from Storks (Warner Bros, 2016) certificate U
    • Start time: 00:00:18 (Immediately after the opening credits)
    • End time: 00:02:18 (Junior goes through the locker room door)
    • Clip length: Two minutes
    • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, say instead:
      • ‘From the beginning of time, storks have delivered babies. They considered this to be their sacred duty. So, they risked their lives to make sure that they always delivered. But now, storks no longer deliver babies, they deliver all kinds of consumer products like mobile phones and drones. Their ancient homeland, Stork Island, is now a huge warehouse owned by Cornerstore.com. The highest-performing stork in the new business is called Junior and he is in line for a big promotion.’

FILM CLIP 2

  • Play the second clip from Storks (Warner Bros., 2016) certificate U
    • Start time: 00:24:33 (Nate’s parents are both on the phone)
    • End time: 00:26:10 (Nate and his father say, ‘Five minutes and then we stop’)
    • Clip length: One minute and 37 seconds
    • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say:
      • ‘Nate starts to prepare for the delivery of his baby brother by the storks. He drags a trolley full of tools and materials through the kitchen where both his parents are working. They argue between themselves about which of them is going to go outside and investigate what Nate is doing. Nate’s father goes into the garden and tells Nate that Storks don’t deliver babies any more. Nate is undeterred and keeps working. He tells his father that he doesn’t need his help but also reminds him of how quickly he is growing up. ”You’ll blink and I’ll be in college,” Nate says. Finally, his father agrees to help him but only for five minutes.’

FILM CLIP 3

  • Play the third clip from Storks (Warner Bros., 2016) certificate U
    • Start time: 01:14:28 (There are babies everywhere)
    • End time: 01:15:48 (Junior says, ‘It’s alright’)
    • Clip length: One minute and 20 seconds
    • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say:
      • ‘Junior has now become boss of the storks but he has a big problem – somehow the warehouse is now full of millions of babies. He makes a decision that the storks should stop delivering consumer products and instead go back to what he calls ‘our true calling, our mission’ – delivering babies.’

TALK

Download the Our Sacred Duty PowerPoint for use with this talk.

Scripted Talk

  • [PowerPoint slide 1]
    • Welcome, everyone. Our assembly this morning is based around the film Storks that was released in 2016. This film has a lot of very interesting themes such as family and perseverance, but what we are going to consider today is what the film has to say about work.
  • [PowerPoint slide 2]
    • But first, let’s play a game called, What’s My Line? This game was one of the first game shows on television. [Explain rules of the game and invite volunteers from the audience to act as panel members and/or mystery guests. Play the game for as long as the children’s interest allows. After the game, thank the volunteers for their participation and send them back to their seats.]
  • [PowerPoint slide 3]
    • The film Storks imagines a world where storks have given up their traditional job of delivering babies and now deliver other products.
    • Play the first clip from Storks (Warner Bros., 2016) certificate U
      • Start time: 00:00:18 (Immediately after the opening credits)
      • End time: 00:02:18 (Junior goes through the locker room door)
      • Clip length: Two minutes
      • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, say instead:
        • ‘From the beginning of time, storks have delivered babies. They considered this to be their sacred duty. So, they risked their lives to make sure that they always delivered. But now, storks no longer deliver babies, they deliver all kinds of consumer products like mobile phones and drones. Their ancient homeland, Stork Island, is now a huge warehouse owned by Cornerstone.com. The highest performing stork in the new business is called Junior and he is in line for a big promotion.’
  • [PowerPoint slide 4]
    • In the clip that we have just seen, the narrator described delivering babies as the storks’ ‘sacred duty’. What do you think he meant by this phrase? [Allow time for discussion.] Many people would understand the phrase ‘a sacred duty’ to mean something that God wants them to do. Others might understand the phrase to mean a job that takes up their whole life and that makes a real difference to the lives of other people.
  • [PowerPoint slide 5]
    • Almost everyone, however, would agree that being a parent is a sacred duty. In the film Storks, we see how one set of parents, the Gardners, try to combine this ‘sacred duty’ with having a job. They are the parents of Nate, a ten-year-old boy who would really like a baby brother. One day, he finds an old leaflet advertising the storks’ baby delivery service. He writes to them requesting a baby brother and then starts to make the necessary preparations for his arrival.
    • Play the second clip from Storks (Warner Bros., 2016) certificate U
      • Start time: 00:24:33 (Nate’s parents are both on the phone)
      • End time: 00:26:10 (Nate and his father say, ‘Five minutes and then we stop’)
      • Clip length: One minute and 37 seconds
      • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say:
        • ‘Nate starts to prepare for the delivery of his baby brother by the storks. He drags a trolley full of tools and materials through the kitchen where both his parents are working. They argue between themselves about which of them is going to go outside and investigate what Nate is doing. Nate’s father goes into the garden and tells Nate that Storks don’t deliver babies any more. Nate is undeterred and keeps working. He tells his father that he doesn’t need his help but also reminds him that how quickly he is growing up. ‘You’ll blink and I’ll be in college,’ Nate says. Finally, his father agrees to help him but only for five minutes.
      • I am sure that all of us here have had similar conversations either as a child or as a parent. It is extremely difficult as a parent to do your ‘sacred duty’ whilst also trying to work, keep the house tidy and do a million other things. What could children do to help their parents be able to spend more time with them? [Allow discussion.]
  • [PowerPoint slide 6]
    • By accident, Nate’s request to the storks is acted upon. Most of the film shows the many challenges that Junior, the stork we saw in the first clip, and his human friend, Tulip have to overcome to deliver the newest member of Nate’s family. Towards the end of the film, Junior has become the boss of the storks. He decides that they should return to doing their sacred duty, especially now as their entire warehouse is filled with babies.
    • Play the third clip from Storks (Warner Bros., 2016) certificate U
      • Start time: 01:14:28 (The warehouse is full of babies)
      • End time: 01:15:48 (Junior says, ‘It’s alright’)
      • Clip length: One minute and 20 seconds
    • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say:
      • ‘Junior has now become boss of the storks but he has a big problem – the warehouse is full of millions of babies. He makes a decision that the storks should stop delivering consumer products and instead go back to what he calls ‘our true calling, our mission’ – delivering babies.
  • [PowerPoint slide 7]
    • Our quotation from the Bible, Colossians 3:17, reminds Christians that their sacred duty is not just to go to church on a Sunday and to say their prayers every night. Instead, they are told that everything they do and everything they say should be for Jesus. So, if you are a Christian and a farmer or an ambulance driver or a pest controller or whatever occupation you have, everything you do and say at work and at home should honour the teachings of Jesus. Everything you say and do should be loving and kind. That’s a Christian’s ‘sacred duty’.

Headings and Bullets

  • [PowerPoint slide 1]
    • Welcome.
    • Introducing Storks.
  • [PowerPoint slide 2]
    • What’s My Line?
    • Explain rules and play the game.
  • [PowerPoint slide 3]
    • From delivering babies to…
    • The premise of the film.
  • [PowerPoint slide 4]
    • Sacred Duty?
    • What is meant by the phrase ‘our sacred duty’?
  • [PowerPoint slide 5]
    • The ‘sacred duty’ of parents.
    • What is it? How can children make life easier for parents?
  • [PowerPoint slide 6]
    • Junior, Tulip and the baby.
    • Very brief plot summary.
  • [PowerPoint slide 7]
    • Colossians 3:17.
    • The sacred duty of Christians.

Photo copyright for Our Sacred Duty PowerPoint: Slide 1 Warner Brothers / Slide 2, 4 and 7 iStockphoto.com / Slide 3 Warner Brothers / Slide 5 Warner Brothers / Slide 6 image 1 Warner Brothers image 2 Warner Brothers image 3 Warner Brothers


RESPOND

Reflection

  • Why do you think the storks weren’t happy delivering parcels for Cornerstore.com anymore?
  • Why did Nate’s father agree to help him prepare the house for the stork’s delivery?
  • What do you consider to be your sacred duty at present?
  • What do you think your sacred duty might be in the future?
  • Why might Christians find it difficult to carry out their sacred duty?

Prayer

  • Dear God, we thank you for providing a world in which there are many jobs to do. Help us every day in the things that we have to do at school and at home. We thank you for our parents and for those who take care of us. May we be a help to them in doing their sacred duty in loving, caring and spending time with us. Amen.

YOU WILL NEED:

  1. Storks (Warner Bros., certificate U), click here to buy the DVD online.
  2. Our Sacred Duty PowerPoint.
  3. Set of Occupation cards.

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