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Anne: The Animated Series

anne hopscotch

Group Work is Explored in “A Better Mousetrap”

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In Anne: The Animated Series the episode “A Better Mousetrap” Anne learns the value of group work.

In this episode, there is a mouse problem over running Avonlea.  As the kids get a school assignment to try to address the growing number of mice in Avonlea, Anne is paired with Diana, which she is happy with until Felix also joins their group.  Anne and Diana are not thrilled they have to do the assignment with Felix.  They ignore his ideas and only use their own for the assignment.  But their ideas about the mice do not work out, which cause them to finally consider Felix’s suggestions.  It is Felix’s idea that ends up working the best, which Anne and Diana realize they should have listened to him earlier.  They learn that although they had preconceived notions of Felix, they need to listen and consider his ideas as well.  It all works out in the end and they learn a valuable lesson.

The episode explores the way group work can go sour quickly.  There is always someone in the group that can be quiet or less confident in their ideas.  In this episode, it was Felix that was ignored in the group.  Felix redeems himself when his ideas prove to be valuable.  But Anne and Diana learned a good lesson that they need to consider every idea in the group, rather than ignore some member’s contributions.

Never Judge a Book by its Cover!

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In the Anne: The Animated Series episode “A Welcome Hero” Anne finds out that she can’t judge a book by its cover!

The famous adventure author E.J. Lark comes to Avonlea, which thrills Anne as she anticipates the visit.  However, when Anne thinks a tall, handsome writer is coming to town, she is mistaken.  As E.J. Lark turns out to be a quiet, mousy woman much to Anne’s surprise.  Anne is taken aback by E.J. Larks appearance, but after spending some time with E.J., Anne realizes she judged E.J. by her appearance before she got to know her.  E.J. impresses Anne with her love of adventure and strong personality!

Anne learns quickly not to judge others by their appearance, as she jumped to an uninformed conclusion about E.J.  It is through the visit with E.J. that she learns more about her personality, and that is does not match her mousy appearance.  Anne finds out that people can look a certain way and have a totally different personality.  As well she learns that it is the personality that makes someone interesting, not their appearance.

Family in “Oh Brother”

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In Anne: The Animated Series episode “Oh Brother”, Felix and Felicity find that even though they fight constantly, they are still family.

Even though Felix and Felicity are brother and sister, they keep fighting with each other as they do not get along well.  However, since Anne is an only child, she has trouble understanding why Felix and Felicity fight.  Anne attempts to intervene, but her help is misconstrued and only perpetuates the situation causing Felix and Felicity to fight more.  Although Anne tried to help Felix and Felicity settle their differences, her mindset of an only child did not understand the annoyances that come up in a brother and sister relationship.  Yet, Felix and Felicity are able to come to a better appreciate each other when each of them sees the aspects and skills about each other they had not noticed.  It is then that Felix and Felicity are ready to enjoy the King family reunion that is coming up.

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Relationships are a key theme in the episode, especially those within a family.  It is the brother and sister relationship of Felix and Felicity that the episode centers on.  Anne comes from a different background, of being adopted and then an only child.  So she has difficulty understanding why the relationship between Felix and Felicity is so turbulent.  It is after Anne’s attempt to help them that Felix and Felicity realize that they may annoy each other at times, but ultimately they enjoy each others company.  They see the good in each other through skills and aspects they had failed to notice while they were annoyed at each other.

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It is this significance of relationships, that even when they are tumultuous, it is important to focus on the positive in each other.

Respecting Other’s Opinions in “A Walk in His Shoes”

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In the Anne: The Animated Series episode “A Walk in His Shoes”, Anne finds that she disagrees with Marilla over the way she does certain farm chores.

Anne wants to do things her way and gets impatient with Marilla.  Anne thinks that the way she wants to do the farm tasks is the best way.  However, she starts to use her imagination to understand why Marilla does everything in a certain style.  By trying to learn about where Marilla is coming from, she has put herself in Marilla’s shoes.  In doing this action, Anne has a better grasp on Marilla’s feelings as well as a newfound respect for Marilla’s way of doing things.  It is the simple act of understanding Marilla’s point of view that helps Anne, even though she still may disagree with it, she can still respect it.

The themes in the episode deal with understanding other people’s point of views as well as respect.  It can be difficult to find common ground on some issues, but regardless of the argument, if respect is mutual there should be no hard feelings.  By understanding other people’s feelings and point of view, it helps to be more empathetic towards them.  It also creates a sense of respect for their point of view, as not everyone has to agree with each other.  Anne learns that she can disagree with Marilla, but still get along with her to get the farm chores done.

Determination in “The Swim of Things”

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In the Anne: The Animated Series episode “The Swim of Things”, Felix and Anne learn about determination.

As Felix is not a strong swimmer, he becomes very disheartened by his poor capabilities at the pond.  This causes him not to join in with the others.  However, Anne loves the pond swims and becomes impatient with Felix’s inability to swim.  Yet, Anne gets an injured shoulder and can no longer swim in the pond, causing her to spend more time with Felix.  The pair help each other with their limitations and overcome them to be able to join in with the others swimming in the pond.

In this episode, the themes of determination and friendship are portrayed.  Anne and Felix become determined to swim in the pond.  They help each other to do so and stay motivated at the same time.  Their friendship gets strengthened by their ability to motivate each other and help each other with exercises to swim better.  Instead of giving up or feeling defeated, both Anne and Felix realize the importance of overcoming obstacles to achieve their goal to swim well.

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Fashion and Trends in “The Sleeves”

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The Anne: The Animated Series episode “The Sleeves” has Anne concerned about her appearance.

After world famous Amelia Evans arrives back into town, the people of Avonlea try their best to impress her. Amelia is very sophisticated and cosmopolitan; it prompts everyone in town to be as chic as Amelia.  Since Amelia used to live in Avonlea, there is a talent show in her honour.  Anne is in the talent show, but becomes preoccupied by her appearance and almost forgets about her part in the show.  Anne learns that she is proud of who she is and what she looks like, regardless of others.

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The issues in this episode include self confidence and trends.  Anne struggles with her self confidence in the episode, as she puts more value on staying in trend with the big sleeves that Amelia wears.  Instead of focusing on the important things she has going on, like her talent show part, Anne finds herself wanting to fit in and wear the big sleeves like Amelia.

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While everyone in town is also trying to prove they are current and modern to impress Amelia.  The notion of being modern becomes more important than that of the country lifestyle the people of Avonlea have.  By getting swept up in the sophistication and fashion of Amelia, the townspeople forget to place more emphasis on their internal qualities.  Everyone learns the importance of internal qualities, like kindness, over the external features, like fashion.

Self Confidence in the Episode “The Witch of Avonlea”

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In the Anne: The Animated Series episode “The Witch of Avonlea”, Anne finds herself in the spelling bee but her fear of letting down her team is getting to her.

Anne begins to doubt her abilities to do well in the spelling bee, causing her to believe she is cursed and has lost the ability to spell.  And a dream she has about her losing only further her doubts she will let everyone down at the spelling bee.  It is when she starts to believe in herself and her abilities that she is able to spell again.

Anne’s fear of letting down her team stems from her feelings that the team is only as good as its weakest link.  When she worries that she is the weakest link, it is then that she can’t spell anymore.  The best way to combat the doubt in abilities is to practice.  The more practice they can do then the more confidence they will build.  As everyone has strengths and weaknesses, it is important to understand it’s impossible to be great at everything.  But with the right amount of practice and a good attitude, any ability can be nurtured.

Anne also feels as though her team is counting on her to win, which adds pressure to the situation.  That pressure gives Anne a nervous feeling about the spelling bee instead of having fun with it.  Her nerves and lack of self confidence about spelling are what affect her the most.  It is when she starts to believe in herself and gets a positive attitude that her feelings about the spelling bee turn into something upbeat and fun!

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Learning About Chores in the Episode “Chores Eclipsed”

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The Anne: The Animated Series episode “Chores Eclipsed” finds Anne neglecting her chores in order to plan her lunar eclipse party.

She finds it difficult to manage her time between party planning and chores.  She falls behind on the chores she has to do around the house in order to focus on the party.  She starts to feel like she is the only one that has to do everything.  But she realizes that if Marilla and Matthew stopped doing their chores too, the house would be a mess.  It is then she understands the importance of everyone helping out around the house and how chores are an everyday part of life.

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The episode touches on the themes of time management and chores.  At any time, it can feel stressful to manage household chores with everyday life, especially when things get busy.  Yet, it is important to understand that through organization and time management it is easier to get everything done.  Also a routine is a great way to make sure there is enough time to get through necessary chores.  For example, if every Monday evening it is time to do laundry, then it becomes easier to remember to do.  As well once it becomes part of a routine it is simple to work in other tasks around chores.  So while the laundry is in the wash, another chore or task could be accomplished.

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With some routine and organization any task and chore can be completed in an uncomplicated manner, which makes more free time to have fun!