Posted in Drama for children, Movement activities, Movement stories for children

The Clumsy Elephant and the Beautiful Ballet Shoe: A Movement Story for Children.

Resources needed: Clear space, some classical music (optional).

Introduction: The teacher tells the children that they are going to hear a story about a clumsy elephant. The children should find their own space and they have to listen very carefully.
Narrator: There once was an elephant that was different from all the other elephants in the jungle, as he could only walk on two feet instead of four. So he wasn’t very good at balancing since he didn’t walk on four feet. (All the children walk around like the elephant with two legs and they lose their balance and fall down.) One day, he decided to go for a walk in the jungle. He heard the monkeys in the trees above. (Children move like monkey and make monkey sounds.) Then he heard snakes hissing in the grass (children move like snakes and make hissing noises), and finally he heard the lions roaring from their caves (children move like the lions and roar loudly.) He kept walking until he came across a pair of beautiful ballet shoes. What colour were they? (Children answer. The ballet shoes are magic so they can be any colour.) The elephant never saw such beautiful shoes. He rushed to put the ballet shoes on. (Children put on the ballet shoes.) He looked at them and admired them. He started to dance gracefully in them. (Children move/dance gracefully around the room.) He was so happy because he was known as the “clumsy elephant.” But all of a sudden the shoes had a life of their own. They made him jump up and down, up and down. (Children jump up and down, up and down, up and down.) The elephant sat down and the ballet shoes eventually stopped moving. He got up slowly and the shoes were very still, but once he got up on two feet again the shoes went from side to side. (Children move from left to right, left to right, left to right.) They went faster and faster from side to side until eventually the clumsy elephant sat down. (Children sit down.) He got up slowly and the shoes were slow. (Children get up slowly and carefully.) When he was on two feet the shoes went round in circles faster and faster until suddenly they stopped. (Children go round in circles.) The elephant tiptoed slowly and then the shoes went up and down, from side to side, and around in circles faster and faster each time until they suddenly stopped. (Children tiptoe and jump up and down, move from side to side, and around in circles.) Then the shoes started to dance very gracefully. (Children dance very gracefully.) The elephant had never been so graceful. The monkey came down from the trees. The snake came out of the grass, and the lion came out of the cave. They all agreed they had never seen an elephant so graceful. When he had finished his dance he took a bow. (Children take a bow.) And bent down and kissed his shoes. He said, “Thank you, beautiful ballet shoes.” (Children kiss their shoes.)

Closure: Tell the children that the elephant is very tired and he is going to go to sleep with his ballet shoes. (Everyone lies down on the floor and kisses their ballet shoes good night. They stay very still as if they were asleep.) The teacher moves around the room trying to get the elephants to move. If an elephant moves then they have to get up and help the teacher to get the other sleeping elephants to move. They are not allowed to touch the other elephants, but they may move close and try to get them to laugh by talking to them.

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