As a child I was a reader of epic proportions, one of those kids that parents and teachers love as I always had a book in my hand, never, EVER leaving home without one! We all have our favourite authors and genres but I’m fairly certain that beloved author Roald Dahl is the undisputed KING of children’s fiction, invoking and inspiring a love of reading worldwide, setting alight the imaginations of both kids and adults and forging lifelong relationships with his brilliant, hilarious and sometimes tragic characters.
Sometimes those characters come alive on the big screen (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Fantastic Mr Fox are my faves!)………….and when they do, it’s an immediate immersion into one of Dahl’s magical world’s, crafted with care by the world’s finest filmmakers (Disney and Spielberg!) – there is no room for second-best when tasked with bringing the tales of our childhood to life.
Though it was written over 30 years ago, The BFG addresses themes that are still relevant today and carries with it important social messages that are sooooo worth having a think about and discussing with your kids before and after seeing the movie.
The BFG Talking points
- Loyalty and friendship. There are numerous times in the movie where the BFG displays his unwavering loyalty to Sophie. The result is an unlikely friendship that accomplishes something wonderful to benefit the entire world!
Talk to kids about how sometimes, we can find dear friends when we’re not even looking for them and what can be achieved by working with others and sticking by their side through thick and thin.
- Bullying. Yes, even giants get bullied. The BFG is considerably smaller, and less gross than the other giants – I mean he doesn’t eat human ‘beans’ after all!
Talk to kids about how being a little bit different from a majority can make an individual or a group a target for bullies. Ask them who are the targets in their social groups? How can they be supported and helped? How can bullying be stopped?
- Seeing past appearances. Sophie’s reservations about befriending the BFG weren’t without merit (see their preferred diet above lol), plus, giants do look pretty freaky if we’re being honest!
Talk to kids about how the BFG’s physical characteristics may have looked strange to Sophie initially, but she came to appreciate them. Ask how the BFG’s size and large ears made positive contributions within the story, what can we discover about people if we close our eyes, forget about how we look and simply listen? How can we celebrate our differences in our day to day life?
- Bravery. Both Sophie and the BFG have to be brave time and time again as they struggle to keep Sophie safe, implement their cunning plan and secure an audience with the queen!
Discuss the ways in which each character showed bravery during the film, what else did they have to call on to keep being brave even if they were scared e.g. trust, self-belief, the greater good. Are ‘normal’ people brave in our everyday lives?
Writing those discussion prompts made me super excited to get our copy of The BFG out for a re-read with Ethan! Roald Dahl was noted as saying The BFG was his personal favourite out of everything he’d written, have you read it yet? Let me know if you’re a ‘movie first’ or a ‘book first’ kind of person in the comments below and you’re in the draw to win 2 x Double Movie Passes to see The BFG which is in cinemas from July 7th.
Watch the spellbinding trailer here and cross your fingers xx
Competition closes 25/7/16 @ 10pm, NZ residents only.