Australian Council on Children and the Media

Santa’s Apprentice

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What age is this for?

Age
0-5
5-6
7-8
8-13
13+

Classification

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What’s it about?

Santa is getting very old and is starting to forget things. He knows it’s time to start looking for a boy to train up to be the new Santa but doesn’t really want to stop being Santa just yet. A council of Santas agrees that they must find a young boy but he has to be able to meet three conditions: he has to be named Nicholas; he has to be an orphan and he must have a pure heart. It isn’t easy to find someone who meets of all these conditions but they eventually find a boy in an orphanage in Sydney, Australia.

The young Nicholas is very worried that he’ll never be good enough to be the new Santa, especially when he’s afraid of heights. He doesn’t see how he’ll ever be able to climb up and down chimneys. Santa takes pity on the young boy and realises it’s up to him to train him and help him not to be afraid. This Nicholas is going to be the best Santa ever.

What to look out for

There’s a mean bully at the orphanage, also called Nicholas, who often tries to hurt other children such as:

  • Taking a toy from a child just to make her cry.
  • He grabs the other Nicholas and tries to push him.
  • He steals Santa’s magic ball and shrinks all of the children in the orphanage and their carer.
  • Has a fight with the other Nicholas on a roof.

There are also a few scenes that might scare younger kids such as:

  • Nicholas accidentally sets fire to Santa’s beard.
  • The police come looking for Nicholas after Santa has taken him to the North Pole.
  • Nicholas falls off a high wall and a chimney but Santa catches him.
  • Nicholas falls off the sleigh several times while learning how to fly.

Moral of the Story

The message of the story is to keep trying and  not to be afraid.

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