Distributed by National Film Board of Canada, 1123 Broadway, Suite 307, New York, NY 10010; 800-542-2164
Produced by Marc Bertrand, and the National Film Board of Canada
Directed by Tali
DVD, color, 7 min.
Animation, Children's Literature, Storytelling
Reviewed by Deidra N. Herring, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
Date Entered: 11/29/2006
This short film is a hilarious light-hearted take on family life focusing on problem solving within a family unit. Three chickens mimic the human spirit within a warm home environment in this comical piece. Mrs. Hen has two sons, but the oldest becomes so finicky about his food that he throws tantrums and plays video games when he’s not satisfied with his meal. After several occasions of him refusing to eat the feed, Mrs. Hen becomes fed up and decides to teach him a lesson by letting him figure out how to fix his own meals. However, Mrs. Hen takes care of her children even when they are unappreciative.
Because the film is wordless, the audience pays close attention to the combination of physical cues and the interaction of clucking and squawking from the mother hen and her two children in order to interpret their actions and what is being said. The lesson plans that are included with the DVD are appropriate for ages 8-10. Suggested activities prompt students to reflect on real experiences and participate in collaborative groups and role play in order to problem solve. Using the digital story is a nice way for teachers to develop themes around relationships and integrate other subjects into a thematic unit.
The animation is pleasantly presented by using paper drawings and soft colors that will grab the attention of young audiences. The musical sounds of banjos and violins playing softly in the background compliment the country like setting. The National Film Board of Canada lists the video as an Honorable Mention for Children and Youth by the 2006 Columbus International Film and Video Festival.