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SUBJECTS —World/France and the Renaissance; Myths & Fairy Tales;
SOCIAL-EMOTIONAL LEARNING — Romantic Relationships; Self-Esteem;
MORAL-ETHICAL EMPHASIS — Trustworthiness, Caring.
Age: 10+; MPAA Rating -- PG for brief language and mild thematic elements; Drama; 1998; 121 minutes; Color.
Ever After is an enchanting re-imagining of the Cinderella fairy tale set in France during the Renaissance. In this version, the little cinder girl is a well-read young woman of passionate intelligence and integrity named Danielle. She awakens a jaded prince of France by advocating concepts from Sir Thomas More's Utopia. The Prince, it turns out, is suffocating in the gilded cage of royal life. In a charming departure from the plot of the classic tale, the cinder girl saves the Prince just as much as he saves her.
Leonardo da Vinci, who served as artist-in-residence at the French court from 1516 to 1519, acts out the role of fairy godmother. The Mona Lisa and several of his famous inventions make cameo appearances. This is a very literate tale, told with great wit and charm.
TeachWithMovies.com has prepared a lesson plan for Ever After complete with an introductory lecture, a time line, discussion questions, a comprehension test, and an answer key. A unique "Learning From Historical Errors" section allows teachers to use the many historical errors of the film as teaching tools.
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Ever After presents a new and feminist version of the Cinderella fairy tale. It can be used in lessons about the role and importance of fairy tales in childhood development. It is also an excellent introduction to the Renaissance and to European history of the 16th century.
Learning Guide Excerpt
To demonstrate how our Learning Guides can be used by teachers to improve lesson plans, we have set out below two of the teaching moments based on a historical errors in Learning Guide to Ever After.
Prince Henry gives a chocolate candy to the stepsisters. Chocolate was first used by the Olmecs, Mayans, and Aztecs of pre-Columbian South America. It was at just the time of this movie, the early 1500s, that the Spanish learned about chocolate. But Henry most likely never tasted it and it certainly wasn't available in a market in France. For almost a hundred years, chocolate was a delicacy available only to the Spanish royal court. It wasn't until about 1615 when Anne, daughter of Philip II of Spain, married French King Louis XIII that chocolate made its appearance in France, and then only as a drink. It was enthusiastically adopted as good food and good medicine by the French Court.
Danielle states that her stepmother spends money on her stepsister like she has "money to burn." However, paper money wasn't used in Europe until about 1660. Money in the 16th century was made of precious metals, like gold and silver.
The Learning Guide to the film Ever After contains sections on Benefits of the Movie, Possible Problems, Helpful Background, Discussion Questions, Links to the Internet, and Bridges to Reading. The Discussion Questions are divided into three categories: Subject Matter, Social-Emotional Learning, and Moral-Ethical Emphasis.
A subscription to TeachWithMovies.com will give teachers access to 350 Snippet Lesson Plans, Learning Guides, and Movie Lesson Plans. Subscribe Today and create a great lesson plan from Ever After teaching children about the Cinderella fairy tale and the Renaissance.
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