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Additional Discussion Questions:
      Subjects (Curriculum Topics)
      Social-Emotional Learning
      Moral-Ethical Emphasis
            (Character Counts)

Additional Assignments

Other Sections:
      Bridges to Reading
      Links to the Internet
      Selected Awards & Cast

Go to the Learning Guide for this film.

Additional Discussion Questions

5. What is the role of wonder in the world in an adult? Suggested Response: Wonder at the world brings a lot of joy to the life of the person who has it. A person who tries to keep wonder in his or her life will observe more and be open to new experiences.

6. Santa Claus is a major character in this film. Why did the authors of this story have it take place just before Easter rather than just before Christmas? Suggested Response: The story is about preserving the hope of children. While Christmas is a holiday that is associated with the coming of the light, Easter is associated with new life, hope and beginnings. Since the story of the Rise of the Guardians relates to the protection of hope and of children, it is fitting that the move focus on the Easter Holiday. The discussion should lead to the concept that Christmas is a festival of lights which many religions and cultures have at about the time of the equinox.* There are also many festivals in the spring which celebrate the reawakening of the earth after the death of winter. There is also a set of holidays in the fall to celebrate the successful harvest. Thanksgiving is our version of that holiday.

7. What is the Boogeyman? Is he an archetype of more of a fanciful figure, like Santa and the Easter Bunny? Suggested Response: We are not aware of an accepted archetype of the boogey man. It is not a type of person. He is a fanciful personification of the force for evil.

8. In this story, what is the purpose in casting Jack Frost as a prankster? Suggested Response: Jack is all about having fun and the kind of fun available to children in snowy climates involves Snow Days, throwing snow balls, sledding, and ice skating.


Sand Man is silent and does little until he saves the day at the film's end. What lies behind this characterization? Suggested Response: Answers will vary: Since Pitch does most of his fearful work through nightmares, he intrudes into the domain of Sand Man, the Guardian responsible for bringing peaceful sleep with his calming, golden demeanor. This stresses the importance of sound sleep.

10. The Man in the Moon represents an overall authority. How is this authority presented? Suggested Response: Jack says that when the Man in the Moon chases the darkness away he is no longer afraid. Jack asks "Manny" why he is here as if somehow the Man in the Moon knows the answer to this question. It is Manny who wants Jack Frost to be inducted as a new Guardian. We are told that Manny chooses all Guardians. Some students may see the Man in the Moon as god-like in authority.

. 11. Why is the Boogey Man called "Pitch" Black? Suggested Response: The idea is that his black is so intense, i.e., his loss of hope is so complete, that it can never be regained.

12. Jack is searching for his memories of where he came from. Why are they so important to him? Is a sense of where you have come form important to you? Suggested Response: There is no one correct response. In this story they show that he has been a guardian from the beginning. The memories of saving his little sister give him the strength to battle Pitch Black.

See Discussion Questions for Use With any Film that is a Work of Fiction.

Social-Emotional Learning Discussion Questions:


1.  Do you think Mark Felt (Deep Throat) was cowardly in not coming forward or was he courageous to put his career at risk to expose the wrongdoing? Suggested Response: First, it should be noted that Mr. Felt's actions were quite courageous. There was a tremendous risk of exposure. Courage does not require stupidity, nor does it require self-sacrifice when that is not necessary or would not be helpful. Mr. Felt was able to guide the young reporters so that the scandal and the cover-up were exposed. Had these efforts been unsuccessful, then Mr. Felt would have had to face the question of whether his involvement needed to be more active.

Moral-Ethical Emphasis Discussion Questions (Character Counts)

Discussion Questions Relating to Ethical Issues will facilitate the use of this film to teach ethical principles and critical viewing. Additional questions are set out below.


(Do what you are supposed to do; Persevere: keep on trying!; Always do your best; Use self-control; Be self-disciplined; Think before you act -- consider the consequences; Be accountable for your choices)

1.  How did the Guardians follow the ethical principle of RESPONSIBILITY in this story? Suggested Response:The looked out for the children and risked their lives fighting Pitch Dark.


(Be kind; Be compassionate and show you care; Express gratitude; Forgive others; Help people in need)

2.  They deeply cared about the children seeking to keep their dreams happy and preserve their hope for the future. Suggested Response: ****

Additional Assignments

    4. The Guardians are tasked with the responsibility of keeping hope* wonder alive in children. Write a character analysis of Easter Bunny and North in which you explain their roles in this regard. How, for example, does the Easter Bunny bring about the wonders of spring? How does North put hope in the world of children?

    4. Write a description of an adult that you know who retains their wonder at life or who are full of hope.

    5. Write a narrative of how you learned that Santa Clause or the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy were fantasies. Be sure to include how you felt when you received this information.

    6. Write a character description of an adult that you know who has retained the child-like wonder at the world or who demonstrates that he or she still has hope about something important to them.

See also Assignments, Projects, and Activities for Use With any Film that is a Work of Fiction.

Bridges to Reading:

The Guardians of Childhood, a series of novels by William Joyce, are frequently assigned as reading in elementary school.

Links to the Internet:

Selected Awards, Cast and Director:

Selected Awards: 2013 Annie Awards: Best Animated Effects in an Animated Production; Storyboarding in an Animated Feature Production; 2013 Annie Awards Nominations: Best Animated Feature; Character Animation in a Feature Production; Character Animation in a Feature Production; Editorial in an Animated Feature Production; Music in an Animated Feature Production; Production Design in an Animated Feature Production; Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production (Jude Law As "Pitch"); 2013 Golden Globe Awards Nominations: Best Picture; 2013 Visual Effects Society Nominations: Outstanding Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture Outstanding Created Environment in an Animated Feature Motion Picture; Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in an Animated Feature Motion Picture;

Featured Actors: Chris Pine as Jack Frost (voice) Alec Baldwin as North (voice), Jude Law as Pitch (voice); Isla Fisher as Tooth (voice); Hugh Jackman as Bunny (voice), Dakota Goyo as Jamie Bennett (voice).

Director: Peter Ramsey.


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