1: Safari as a Way of Life

Safari as a 
Way of Life

Often, a mission statement is almost like an unnumbered list of a person’s goals and values in life. These can be goals for an entire lifetime, or goals to be achieved in a shorter amount of time. A person’s values are how he or she thinks about life in general and often answer the question, what is most important in life to the individual.


In this clip from the opening scene of the movie, Dan is backpacking. He stops to add to his journals, and composes his iconic mission statement.
“Mission Statement for Safari as a Way of Life: To explore the unknown and the familiar, distant and near, and to record in detail with the eyes of a child, any beauty, (of the flesh or otherwise), horror, irony, traces of utopia or hell. Select your team with clear, but when in doubt, take on some new crew and give them a chance. But avoid at all costs fluctuations of sincerity with your best people.”

Film Engagement Activities
1. Read Dan’s mission statement, begin to create a numbered list of goals. Circle the verbs in the mission statement. These are “do” words--things that Dan believed needed to be done. These verbs help the reader to break down Dan’s values and goals in life. 
    1. Once you have identified the verbs, what do you notice about Dan’s “to do” items?
    2. What do we learn about Dan when we break his mission statement into individual sentences and/or pieces
(Teachers, you might demonstrate this task by extracting what Dan states about selecting a team. First circle the verbs in that section to help identify his specific tasks. Then identify what comes after the verb to better break down his goals.)

2. Discuss/journal your reactions to Dan’s mission statement.

3. Create a personal mission statement, with the goal of thinking about your desired goals and values in life.. What talents, ideas, personal beliefs do you have that you can work into your personal mission statement?

4. A safari is an expedition to observe animals and people in their natural habitats, especially in East Africa.

5. “Safari is a way of life” is Dan Eldon’s metaphor for the idea of journeying/exploring/adventuring through one’s life. Create a metaphor for your way of life. I.E. Poetry is a way of life, Skateboarding is a way of life, Giving is a way of life. Turn it into a creative bumper sticker, or poster, digital or otherwise.

6. Possible projects / extensions:
  • Students create a journal-like Dan inspired page that features their mission statement
  • Students create a short Journey-inspired video featuring their mission statement

*Call for projects/RYW/Forum : RYW encourages you to send pictures of your final projects and/or images of you and your students mid process to rock-your-world..org. Look for the tab titled Journey/Dan Eldon or the general forum to do your uploading! You can also tag us your images via instagram, twitter and facebook. 

Rock Your World is a program of Creative Visions
Rock Your World is a Program of Creative Visions, a 501(c) (3) organization that supports creative activists - individuals who use the power of media and arts to create positive change in the world.
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