Mini Lesson: Behind the Scenes of Finding Nemo

Every now and then you have those days where you need to kill 30-40 mins or more and you don’t want to just show a meaningless filler movie. Minimum days and days before holidays are notorious for needing mini lessons and the greatest resource for mini lessons that relate to the art room are the Behind the Scenes featurettes from major motion pictures! These mini-movies are great to share with students when talking about careers in art, special effects, costume design, animation, and other creative industries.

My student’s had two favorite behind the scenes videos that became staples in my curriculum. The first is from Nightmare Before Christmas and the second is from Pixar’s Finding Nemo. If you own the DVD or Blue-rays the Special Features are usually on the second disk. For Finding Nemo, I have included a poor YouTube copy below which could be used in a pinch but the disk version has extras and clips that are interesting.

There are a couple of ways you can make these more than just showing a video, you can pause the video at specific points and ask the class questions about what they saw. Or you can create a handout to use with each video that you show. For Finding Nemo, I created a list of questions that the students would answer in their sketchbooks (saving paper) and we would go over the answers and discuss after the video was over.

To help all of you get started here is a copy of the questions I used in my classroom for the Finding Nemo video above:


And the answers to the questions:


Have fun! If you find any other great Special Features to share in the art room make sure to comment below! 🙂

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