This movie may seem new in the eyes of most adults, but children are often unaware of thes 1982 film. I will discuss space travel and the fantasy of space creatures as background.
’s space ship leaves without him at the beginning of the movie, so I will remind students that there is going to be someone abandoned by their family .
The following questions help to set a purpose for viewing: a. If you were to find an alien creature in your back yard, what would you do? How would you feel? Would you tell your family? b. If an alien creature could not speak, how would you try to communicate? What if it had bad germs or moldy smells? Would you touch the creature? c. Have you ever been lost? What things have you lost? What things have you found? d. Where in space would you like to travel?
The boy in
is named Elliot and his parents are divorced. I will discuss what the word divorce means to the students and ask them to predict how this character Elliot feels about divorce. I will connect this movie to a unit on the solar system and use this as a fantasy or fiction ending to a science unit that has been factual.
It is difficult to understand why
gets sick so I will let students know that our response breaks will focus on understanding the plot and their feelings. The child actors seem so much like regular kids that even grown-ups forget that they are paid actors. They will view the movie with the breaks scheduled at Elliot’s first view of
and when they are both sick. The completion of a reviewer response form can be completed at both breaks.
After watching this film and clarifying content during breaks, I wish to promote the themes that were seen in the pervious two films. One theme involves adults who seem to not care about their children’s needs; Dr. Frankenstein’s father isn’t proud of his son’s work, Auntie Em wants to get rid of Toto, and Eliot’s Mom is too busy to notice him. Secondly, there is an innocent creature in each film who has desperate needs. The monster needs to develop control of his anger, Dorothy’s friends need new parts to be whole, and the alien needs to get home. They all need help communicating their needs. There is a strong female character in each film who initiates actions needed to resolve the main problem. It is Dorothy who pours water on the witch, Elliot’s Mom who realizes why
is sick and Dr. Frankenstein’s fiancee who forces the doctor’s father to visit his son.
The comparable literature book for this film is
(Havill 1988). Jamaica finds an old grey stuffed dog at the park. She takes it home but her mother reminds her that she has to return it to the lost and found counter at the park. This treasury selection has a happy ending and provides depth to the issues of wanting, belonging, and returning.
The specific objectives for viewing
include the following: a. to develop empathy for
’s inability to speak. b. to discuss their feelings about being lost, ignored, ill and dying. c. to describe the many qualities of friendship, especially helping and caring. d. to improve comparison skills of the friendship theme in literature selections and in the other two films of this unit.
Students will be allowed to repeat viewing parts of the film after they have completed a drawing of their favorite part and completed their response sheets. Many culminating activities can be formed after this movie. A large chart can compare the E. T. film to the other two films. Three webs can be developed so that a booklet of writing and drawing is produced and shared at home. Oral reports on their favorite movie part or role-playing a scene can also be an enjoyable ending to this unit. The children can discuss a new genre of films to watch or keep a journal of movies that they watch at home.