Birbal and Akbar’s Missing Thumb – teaching activity
Here are two teaching activities.
The first was kindly sent by Maria Schmidt-Lisowski, a teacher using the story with her class during the coronavirus lockdown.
Before you watch, find a definition for fatalism.
While you watch, answer the following tasks:
- Note down adjectives to describe Akbar.
- Note down adjectives to describe Birbal.
- Finish the sentence: remember, everything happens ….
- What is the practice of the savage tribesmen? eating humans, sacrificing wild animals for their gods, singing and dancing at dawn
- Which animal does Akbar see first? boar, stag, hare
- Birbal murmurs something, how does Akbar react? shouting at Birbal, clenching his lips together, laughing with him
- The second animal is: tiny, magnificent, fluffy, huge
- This time, Akbar loads his gun, which is something: simple, confusing, crystal clear, intricate
- What happens to Akbar’s thumb?
- What does Akbar say to Birbar? fool, clown, idiot, maniac
- Birbal’s punishment is to be: seized, hanged, dragged, killed
- Akbar returns home safely because someone is: lucky, superstitious, crossed his fingers
- He finds Birbal: in the bell tower, under the drawbridge, deep in the moat, being dragged from the dungeon
- What can be learned from the ending of the story?
The second activity was kindly sent by Daniela Campus, a teacher at a middle school in Sardinia.
Download the four-lesson plan as a .pdf
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Permission to tell outlines my views on copyright
For those who are teachers: Telling stories in the classroom: basing language teaching on storytelling