Spineless Theater






Cross-Eyed Cricket Entertainment in conjunction with Spineless Theater Productions announces the 1st annual Children’s Film Fanatics Festival. Have you always dreamed of having a career in film making…here’s your chance! Assemble your crew and create a film about animals. The winning crew will have their names in lights and their movie on the BIG SCREEN!!



When most people think of an animal, they might pictures a cuddly kitten, a hopping toad, a koala bear, a shark or an alligator. Yes, these are animals, but only one group of animals, the vertebrates. There is another entire group of animals that most people do not consider, the invertebrates.


Invertebrates are animals with no backbone. This does not mean they are afraid, just that there is no presence of vertebrae. These creatures range in size from microscopic worms to giant squid and everything in between. Some can hurt you, others cause people to stop in wonderment and awe.


In this quest, you are amateur movie makers trying for spots with Cross-Eyed Cricket Entertainment. Chris the Cross-Eyed cricket is the found and the cousin of the famous cricket of Disney fame. Your objective, if you choose to accept, is to create a movie about a particular invertebrate phylum that would be appropriate for elementary and middle school children.






You will be working in groups for this project. The number in your group will depend on the invert phylum you research. Some are very diverse and will take more “man power.” Remember, your ultimate goal is to create a children’s movie. The critics (classmates) will be learning from you as well as choosing the winner!



1.) Choose who you might want to work with and pick an invert phylum  (teacher has final say on groupings)

            Phylum Porifera – 2

            Phylum Cnidaria - 3

            Phylum Platyhelminthes – 3 (to class)

            Phylum Nematoda - 3

            Phylum Annelida - 3 (to class)

            Phylum Arthropoda - 4 (to class)

            Phylum Mollusca - 3 (to class)

            Phylum Echinodermata – 2

2.) Choose from task list (groups of 2 will share editing/director, group of 4 should put extra person as a floater)

            a. video effects and arts manager

            b. editor/director                                               --> all do research

            c. film layout/time line coordinator


3.) Find the following info about your phylum

            a. Descriptions

            b. Identifying characteristics (ie. Tentacles w/ nematocysts)

            c. How they obtain food

            d. How they move

            e. How they reproduce

            f. Their impact on “man” (ie. Uses, diseases, etc)

            g. Habitat (ie. Ocean, as a parasite in mammals, etc)

            h. Type of symmetry

            i. Easy to understand definitions of “b” (see shawler for details)

            j. How this phylum is “evolved” from other phyla

            k. Pictures of organisms in phylum/ example of members of phylum

            l. Unique/unusual characteristics


4.) Each individual group member will fill out a CHART with the above info about each phylum during presentations


5.) Find pictures, sounds, etc. that you would like to incorporate (video can be used as well) Watch copyright!!


6.) As a group, sketch out a basic layout of movie based on what info and pics you have found


7.) Create movie incorporating info, pics, video, etc. (use windows movie maker program)



1.) http://netvet.wustl.edu/ssi.htm (electronic zoo)

2.) http://can-do.com/uci/lessons98/Invertebrates.html

3.) http://www.earthlife.net/inverts/an-phyla.html

4.) http://www.enature.com ** (for specific info on certain animals)

5.) http://www.perspective.com/nature/animalia/index.html

6.) http://www.biology4kids.com (invertebrates)

7.) Your textbook- chapters 25-29


EVALUATION: (Click on Mr. Worm)





Now that you have finished this quest, you should be very familiar with invertebrates. Next time you hear the word “animals” you might just have a different view!