It’s at this time of the week that grab our passports, apply a liberal amount of sunscreen, reach for the binoculars and head over to AFRICA! Well, we don’t actually go to Africa, unfortunately. Even with advances in the speed and efficiency of air travel, it would simply be impractical for us all to down tools and hop on a flight to Africa every Wednesday afternoon… Although the Air Miles would come in handy! We do however, have the next best thing – another blog post serialising the individual chapters of the Enchanted Kingdom educational eBook! We hope you all survived the alien sands last week, and that you're ready to join us as we take a walk with the elephants…
Chapter 4: Journey the Scorched Plains
In the Enchanted Kingdom film, African Elephants (Loxodonta Africana) are presented. These elephants are very determined as they need to drink more water than any other animal, yet in the dry season in the Kalahari, family herds must walk for miles before they can find water.
The herd is led by an older mother, the matriarch, and her great memory and her skill at leading the family to water keeps them alive during this tough period. The matriarch passes this knowledge down through the generations. The families face many other dangers, such as leopards, hyenas and lions that will try to catch and eat their children. So in order to survive each individual adult elephant must be committed to the wellbeing of the whole herd – the word used to describe this commitment to a common cause is solidarity.
Learning objectives: To prepare poems and perform them aloud, showing understanding through intonation, tone and volume so that the meaning is clear to an audience.
Project aim/question: To plan, write and perform a poem inspired by the wildlife of the Scorched Plains.
Key language: Metaphor, Simile, Adjective, Adverb, Rhyme, Syllable.
The lesson plans within the Enchanted Kingdom eBook are split into three stages, typically with the first two providing the students with information and the third being the application of this knowledge in a creative activity. For the purposes of this blog post, we’ll keep it light by telling you what the information contained within the first two stages are, and then let you take a look at the eBook for lesson plan suggestions and further resources.
STAGE 1: Walking with Elephants
Hwange has a high number of lions and during the dry season they concentrate around the water, waiting to prey on baby elephants. It’s important for the families to keep their babies close, as the lions cannot get them if they are within the herd. The lions hunt mainly at night as they can create more confusion and the elephants do not have great nocturnal eye sight. The family must stick together
STAGE 2: Composing the poems
As a class, examine a range of poetry and write a shared poem either as a class or in groups. Teachers should decide on a suitable style of poetry, for example shorter Haikus for younger or less able students or sonnets for those who are developing mastery. Students should then compose their poems, relying on their planning notes and/or on examples of good work if necessary
Stage 3: Walking with Elephants show
To find out what the final stage of the lesson plan entails, you can look at the education eBook itself, where you’ll be treated to all sorts of beautiful images from the Enchanted Kingdom itself, as we all a further information on:
Suggested Curriculum Links
At the end of each chapter we’ve also included a number of links to resources relevant to the materials covered, and also Microsoft technologies that will be useful in completing the lesson plan.
The children and staff at Broadclyst Community Primary School were involved in the creation of the Enchanted Kingdon educational eBook, and documented their work as their progressed through each of the lesson plans. Here’s their experience of chapter four: Journey the Scorched Plains:
Join us next week, as we dive into the clear blue waters and set out on a Voyage of the Fantastical Seas…