Where’s Aaron: FOUNDATION - Media Arts - Engage3
The class is taking turns hosting ‘Aaron’ the class mascot, taking him on adventures. It is Little J’s turn, so Little J, Nanna, Big Cuz, and Old Dog take Aaron on Country to look for mica rock, and along the way they photograph the expedition. Distracted by the events of the day, Little J loses Aaron and the family enrols the help of Uncle Mick, a Search and Rescue officer, to return him.
Engage - Explore ideas, characters and settings in the community through stories in images, sounds and text
Theme - CHARACTER
After viewing Little J & Big Cuz, Episode 8 ‘Where’s Aaron?’, engage students with the following activities to support their understanding of character, and the role various characters play in the story. Also, where possible access the Little J & Big Cuz picture book and/or eBook for “Where’s Aaron?”.
Have students list the characters in the episode, and discuss what each character looks and acts like, and who their favourite character is. Working in pairs, have students select a character and complete a ‘character profile’ including information about their age, likes, dislikes, attitude, phobias, personality, gender, physical abilities, humour, expression, clothing, etc.
Introduce students to several types of character biographies, such as movie star/celebrity profiles, ‘Wanted’ posters, Horoscopes, Obituary, Birthday notice, Wedding announcement, and/or Anniversary announcement. Each style requires diverse types of information about the character, and presents a different viewpoint about the character. Each of these writing styles also requires an unique design and information layout, for purpose and focus. Engage students with a variety of profiles to compare the different points of view.
Access and use the Little J & Big Cuz Press Kit to read how the producers outline the types of characters in the series. Students can download or copy images of each character and compare their understanding of the characters with the official version. They could annotate the image of each character with words that apply to that character.
Introduce the term ‘stereotype’ and have students suggest what they understand by the term. Alert them to the idea that all media characters are constructed as a stereotype so that the character will relate to, and be accepted by, a universal audience. For this episode, poll students, using Kahoot, to find out which of the characters they identify as:
- the hero – the character who saves the day
- the protagonist (villain) – the character who causes trouble
- the facilitator – the character who helps the hero in the story
- the sage – the character who provides advice or warns of any immanent trouble/conflict
- the joker – the character who is humourous, breaks the tension or makes the audience laugh.
Have students imagine if they were a character in Little J & Big Cuz, and have them design what their character would look like, and what the Little J & Big Cuz series Press Kit would write about their character.