The Replacements (2000)
Concept featured in clip: Spiders
Location of clip: DVD: Chapter 22: 0-1:58

Play Flickclip Here

Summary of clip: The scene begins with Gene Hackman holding a team meeting in the locker room. His point is to address his team’s fears on the field but things going awry and, of course, the teammates take “fears” literally. A rather humorous dialogue ensues about spiders and then bees.
Connection of flickclip to the concept: This is a great clip to lead into unit on arachnids and insects and serves as a powerful engage. Why do people hold such negative feelings about spiders? Where do these beliefs arise?
Suggestions to teachers:
1. Suggested questions for students when viewing the clip:

a. Have students pay attention to the kinds of comments the teammates make about spiders and bees, Are they based on scientific experimentation? Are they based on anecdotal evidence?

b. Why do spiders get such a bad reputation, especially considering the vital niche they play in various ecosystems? What role do films like Arachnophobia add to their reputation? How do books like Charlotte’s Web counter the image?

c. If you were an image consultant, what strategies would you take to change the view of human’s towards spiders? How would you incorporate actual research findings into those strategies?

2. This clip serves primarily as an engage activity on a unit examining spiders. Various inquiries could be done with spiders found in your area using the Internet as a means to gather background research. Students could compare and contrast the kinds of webs created by spiders. Students could collect data on the amount and kinds of food captured in the webs.

3. As an activity students could creatively come up with a children’s book, play or skit to perform in front of youth groups, elementary schools that captures the essence of spider behavior and biology in addition to trying to change attitudes towards spiders.

4. Students could explore the mythology of spiders. How do various cultures perceive spiders? Is arachnophobia primarily an American phenomena or is it prevalent around the world?