Ethos Education

Smallfoot: Why is the truth so important?

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Assembly Objective:

  • Why is the truth so important? This assembly asserts the importance of truth and references Jesus’ teaching in the Bible about the truth’s liberating power.

Film:

  • Smallfoot (Warner Bros, 2018) certificate PG, click here to buy the DVD online.

Bible:

Supporting Values Education:

  • Democracy: This assembly asserts the importance of truth. Without a belief in the importance of truth, democracy is critically undermined.
  • Individual liberty: Individuals have the right to pursue what they perceive to be the truth even when this threatens the consensus of opinion.
  • Mutual Respect and Tolerance: In a diverse society, it is important to focus upon truths that all people hold in common, whilst also being able to disagree respectfully.

OPENING ACTIVITY

Two Truths and a Lie: (Activity)

  • Volunteers have to make three statements about themselves, one of which is untrue. The audience has to guess which statement is a lie.

FILM CLIP 1

  • From Smallfoot (Warner Bros, 2018) certificate PG.
    • Start time: 00:07:14 (Migo lands on the side of the mountain.)
    • End time: 00:14:54 (Migo looks back down upon the village.)
    • Clip length: 7 minutes and 40 seconds.
  • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say, ‘Migo misses hitting the gong with his head and lands on the side of a mountain. He looks around and sees a plane with its engines on fire heading straight for him. He tries to run away but is lifted up by the plane and thrown into the air. The pilot ejects from the plane and drifts to the ground on a parachute. Migo and the pilot meet. Migo realises that the pilot is a ‘smallfoot’. He is very excited. The pilot is terrified by the sight of Migo. A breeze catches the pilot’s parachute and he is carried away down the mountain. Migo runs back to the village to tell them that he has met a smallfoot. No one believes him. He takes them to the mountain side but the plane has disappeared. The villagers run back home terrified by the thought of a smallfoot. The Stone Keeper appears and reassures the villagers that Migo didn’t see a smallfoot because they do not exist. Migo and the Stone Keeper have an argument and Migo is banished from the village.

FILM CLIP 2

  • From Smallfoot (Warner Bros, 2018) certificate PG.
    • Start time: 01:24:09 (Migo is making a speech to the other villagers.)
    • End time: 01:27:38 (The Yetis and the humans pose for a photograph.)
    • Clip length: 3 minutes and 29 seconds.
  • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say, ‘Migo tells the villagers the whole truth about their world. He apologises to them for denying that the smallfoot was real. He asks them what they want to do now that they know the truth. The yetis set off down the mountain to the human village. The police form a line to protect the humans from the yetis but some humans break through the police line to welcome them. Soon, all of the humans and yetis are being friendly towards each other. A photograph is taken.

TALK

Scripted Talk

Download the Smallfoot: Why is the truth so important? PowerPoint for use with this talk.

  • [PowerPoint slide 1]
    • Welcome everyone to our assembly this morning. It is based on the film, Smallfoot. Even though it is a film for children, Smallfoot poses a very deep question: Why is the truth so important?
  • [PowerPoint slide 2]
    • To help us think about this question of truth, let’s play a game called Two Truths and a Lie. (Ask for three volunteers to join you on the stage. They are to make three statements about themselves, one of which is untrue. Can the audience guess which is the untrue statement? You might wish to start the game off with your own two truths and a lie.)
  • [PowerPoint slide 3]
    • (After the game, thank the volunteers for taking part and congratulate the audience members who were able to spot the lies.) Let’s return to our big question this morning – why is the truth so important? (Invite the audience to discuss the question in pairs and then ask for some responses).
  • [PowerPoint slide 4]
    • Most of the main characters in Smallfoot are yetis. A yeti is a mythical creature that supposedly lives in remote mountain regions across the world. It is also known as the Abominable Snowman or Bigfoot.
  • [PowerPoint slide 5]
    • In Smallfoot, the yetis live in a village in the Himalayas. It is a very ordered and happy community. The yetis believe that their mountain is held up by yaks that have to be kept cool by feeding them huge ice balls all throughout the day. They also believe that the sun is a huge flying snail that has to be woken up every morning by a yeti banging its head against an enormous gong.
  • [PowerPoint slide 6]
    • These and the other ‘truths’ by which the yetis live, are written in stone and worn by their leader, The Stone Keeper. One of the yetis’ most important truths is that humans or ‘smallfeet’ as they call them, do not exist.
  • [PowerPoint slide 7]
    • But then, Migo, the son of the yeti who bangs the gong every morning, has an experience that challenges this truth. Play film clip 1 from Smallfoot (Warner Bros, 2018) certificate PG.
      • Start time: 00:07:14 (Migo lands on the side of the mountain.)
      • End time: 00:14:54 (Migo looks back down upon the village.)
      • Clip length: 7 minutes and 40 seconds.
    • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say, ‘Migo misses hitting the gong with his head and lands on the side of a mountain. He looks around and sees a plane with its engines on fire heading straight for him. He tries to run away but is lifted up by the plane and thrown into the air. The pilot ejects from the plane and drifts to the ground on a parachute. Migo and the pilot meet. Migo realises the pilot is a ‘smallfoot’. He is very excited. The pilot is terrified by the sight of Migo. A breeze catches the pilot’s parachute and he is carried away down the mountain. Migo runs back to the village to tell them that he has met a smallfoot. No one believes him. He takes them to the mountain side but the plane has disappeared. The villagers run back home terrified by the thought of a smallfoot. The Stone Keeper appears and reassures the villagers that Migo didn’t see a smallfoot because they do not exist. Migo and the Stone Keeper have an argument and Migo is banished from the village.
    • (Allow children time to reflect upon the clip. Why doesn’t the Stone Keeper believe Migo? How must Migo feel? What would the children do if they were Migo?)
  • [PowerPoint slide 8]
    • Encouraged by his friends in the secret Smallfoot Evidentiary Society, Migo bravely descends the mountain and returns with a ‘smallfoot’ called Percy. He introduces Percy to the villagers. The existence of a smallfoot makes the villagers start to question some of the other truths by which they live.
  • [PowerPoint slide 9]
    • This concerns the Stone Keeper. He reveals to Migo that, in the past, humans hunted yetis and the truths by which they live were invented to keep the community safe. He forces Migo to tell the other yetis that Percy isn’t a real smallfoot. When Migo comes back from returning Percy to the human village, he isn’t able to return to living a lie and, with the support of the Stone Keeper, he reveals the real truth to the other yetis. Play film clip 2 from Smallfoot (Warner Bros, 2018) certificate PG.
      • Start time: 01:24:09 (Migo is making a speech to the other villagers.)
      • End time: 01:27:38 (The Yetis and the humans pose for a photograph.)
      • Clip length: 3 minutes and 29 seconds.
    • If you cannot play this clip from the DVD, instead say, ‘Migo tells the villagers the whole truth about their world. He apologises to them for denying that the smallfoot was real. He asks them what they want to do now that they know the truth. The yetis set off down the mountain to the human village. The police form a line to protect the humans from the yetis but some humans break through the police lines to welcome them. Soon, all of the humans and yetis are being friendly towards each other. A photograph is taken.
  • [PowerPoint slide 10]
    • The final scene of Smallfoot calls to mind a very famous saying of Jesus recorded in the Gospel of John in the Bible. (Share the quote with the children. Ask them to consider: How were the yetis ‘set free’ by knowing the truth about their world? How do the lies and the untruths that we tell make us unfree?) For Christians, the truth that God loves them, no matter what, frees them to share that same love with everyone they meet. That is one of the reasons why the truth is so important.

Headings and bullets

  • [PowerPoint slide 1]
    • Welcome.
  • [PowerPoint slide 2]
    • Two truths and a lie.
  • [PowerPoint slide 3]
    • Why is the truth so important?
  • [PowerPoint slide 4]
    • Yetis.
  • [PowerPoint slide 5]
    • The Yeti village.
  • [PowerPoint slide 6]
    • The Stone Keeper.
  • [PowerPoint slide 7]
    • Migo.
    • Film clip 1.
  • [PowerPoint slide 8]
    • The Smallfoot Evidentiary Society.
  • [PowerPoint slide 9]
    • The Stone Keeper.
    • Film clip 2.
  • [PowerPoint slide 10]
    • John 8: 31-32.

Photo Copyright for Smallfoot Why is the truth so important? PowerPoint: Slide 1 and 3 Warner Bros Entertainment Inc / Slide 2 lady iStockphoto.com sign Pixabay.com / Slide 4 Warner Bros Entertainment Inc / Slide 5 Warner Bros Entertainment Inc / Slide 6 and 9 Warner Bros Entertainment Inc / Slide 7 Warner Bros Entertainment Inc / Slide 8 Warner Bros Entertainment Inc / Slide 10 image 13 www.LumoProject.com


RESPOND

Reflection

  • What truths do you live by?
  • How have you managed to convince someone who, at first, didn’t believe you that you were telling the truth?
  • What did the truth free the yetis from?
  • ‘(The truth) is complicated and it can be scary but it is better than living a lie’. Do you agree or disagree with Migo.
  • How do people agree upon what is true and what is untrue?
  • Have you ever discovered something you believed to be true was, in fact, untrue? How did you feel?

Prayer

  • Dear God, we praise you for being the God of all truth. Help us to remember that lies and untruths only cause harm to ourselves and others. Help us also to be respectful towards those who hold different truths from our own. May our actions, more than our words, bear witness to what we believe and may we never stop learning more and more about your world every day.

YOU WILL NEED:

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