Posted in Aesop's fabes, creative arts, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, English as a second language, Esl, Esl Drama, fables, Fairy Tales, Hans Christian Andersen, Plays, Plays for Children, The Nutcracker

The Nutcracker – A Playscript for children

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Characters: Two Storytellers, Clara, Godfather, Nutcracker Toy, Three Mice, Mouse King, Six Soldiers, Sugarplum Fairy, Arabian Princesses, Chinese Tea Dancers and Flower Ballerinas.
Storyteller 1: Once upon a time there lived a girl called Clara. It was Christmas Eve.
Clara: (looks out the window) It is snowing. It is dazzling white except for that golden light coming from my house.
Storyteller 2: Her parents were having a Christmas Eve party.
(Clara’s godfather walks in and greets everyone.)
Godfather: Merry Christmas, Clara. (He gives Clara a hug and a large Christmas present.)
Clara: Thank you very much. I’ll put it under my Christmas tree.
Storyteller 1: That night, when everyone had gone to bed, Clara crept downstairs as quiet as a mouse.
Clara: I’m so excited to open my present from my godfather.
(She opens the present.)
Clara: It is a Nutcracker Toy. What a wonderful present. I’m so tired. (She yawns.) I’ll just have a quick nap under this Christmas tree.
Storyteller 2: Bong, bong; the clock struck midnight.
Clara: My goodness, the tree is rising above me.
(Nutcracker Toy comes to life and starts moving.)
Nutcracker Toy: Hello, Clara.
Clara: The Nutcracker Toy has come alive.
Nutcracker Toy: I’m the nutcracker prince.
Clara: What are you doing here?
Nutcracker Toy: I’ve come to protect you.
Clara: Why do I need protecting?
Nutcracker Toy: The kitchen mice are plotting to kidnap you. (He blows his whistle.) Never mind, these six soldiers are here to help you.
(The soldiers march by.)
(Mice follow the soldiers into the room.)

Mouse 1: There she is.
Mouse 2: Let’s get her.
Soldier 1: We must stop the mice.
Soldier 2: Use these lumps of cheese and fire them at the mice.
Soldier 3: Spray them with water.
Mouse 3: Help us, help us.
(The Mouse King enters.)
Mouse King: Is this the best you can do? (He whips out his sword and points it at the nutcracker prince. They have a sword fight.)
Clara: I must help the Nutcracker Toy. (She takes off her shoe and fires them at the Mouse King.)
Mouse King: Something has hit me. (He collapses and is out cold.)
Nutcracker Toy: You saved me, Clara. I must thank you.
Storyteller 2: The Nutcracker Toy called his reindeer and sleigh.
Reindeer: Your sleigh awaits, Prince.
Nutcracker Toy: Jump on board, Clara.
Clara: Where are we going?
Nutcracker Toy: It is a surprise.
Storyteller 1: They flew through an open window and into a snow-filled sky. Eventually, they arrived at their destination.
Clara: Where are we? Look, the trees are made of lollipops and the flowers are made of marshmallows.
Nutcracker Toy: This is the land of treats.
(They get off the sleigh.)
Nutcracker Toy: Clara, come. I want to show you something. This is the marzipan castle. It is decorated with ever kind of sweet you can imagine.
(He knocks at the door.)
Sugarplum Fairy: Welcome. I’m the Sugar Plum Fairy. I’m so glad you could make it. Please come inside. Make yourself at home and eat anything you want.
Clara: I’ve never seen so many cookies, cakes and candy.
Storyteller 1: Clara and the Nutcracker Toy ate to their hearts’ content.
Storyteller 2: Once they had finished all the food, they were entertained by the Arabian Princesses (the Arabian Princesses come out and dance to music), Chinese Tea Dancers (the Chinese Tea Dancers come out and dance to music), and Flower Ballerinas (the Flower Ballerinas come out and dance to music.)
Clara: This is an amazing place. I’ve had an amazing time.
Nutcracker Toy: Clara, it is time to go home.
Clara: Thank you for a wonderful adventure.
Reindeer: Hop on.
Storyteller 1: The next morning, Clara woke up underneath the Christmas tree.
Clara: Where am I? I’m underneath the Christmas tree. (She picks up the Nutcracker Toy.) Where is the prince? It must have been a dream … unless it was the magic of Christmas Eve.

For More Fairytales on Stage, click below, only $0.99.

 

 

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Posted in Closure activities, Creative Visualisation, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama strategies, Endings, English as a second language, Movement activities, Relaxation activities for kids, Relaxation games

Closure/Relaxation Activites

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Relaxation is very important in Drama. The following activities will enable children to reduce stress and to help them release mental, physical and emotional tension. A relaxed body also leads to good voice production – benefiting all aspects of the voice such as pitch, pace, pause, inflection and projection.

Game: Be a waxwork
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources needed: Clear space
Instructions: The children must imagine that they are a waxwork in Madame Tussauds’ Museum in London. Everyone can decide which very famous person they want to be. The children get into position and then the leader walks around looking at the waxworks and tries to guess who is who. When she has guessed everyone there is unfortunately a fire in the museum and all the waxworks melt slowly to the ground.

Game: Smoke in the chimney
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources needed: Clear space
Instructions: The children imagine that they are smoke rising from a chimney. They move, undulating slowly. They stretch their bodies as much as they can and then they finally relax.

Game: Puppet on a string
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources needed: Clear space
Instructions: The children imagine they are puppets with strings attached to their shoulders that someone is pulling from above. The leader tells them that they are being pulled up and their limbs fly out in all directions. Even the feet can be pulled off the ground at times. Finally the strings are cut, and the body relaxes.

Game: Floating tongue
Minimum number of participants: 1 (and the Leader)
Resources needed: Clear space
Instructions: The children are told to hold their tongues out of their mouths. They must make sure that their tongues don’t touch any part of the mouth. Then the leader tells them to clench their jaws and relax them slowly. After that they let their tongues completely relax. They should do these five times.

Game: Lion’s roar
Minimum number of participants: 1
Resources needed: Clear space
Instructions: Each child imagines that s/he is a mighty lion with a loud roar. But the roar is bottled up inside the lion. S/he should stand up like a proud lion; scrunch up his/her face and hands, ready to let the lion’s roar go. Then the leader tells them to take a deep breath and let the roar out. Tell them to stick out their tongues and hold their arms and hands out in front of them as they roar.

Game: The rock
Minimum number of participants: 1 (and the Leader)
Resources needed: Clear space and chairs
Instructions: Each child sits on a chair with knees bent, feet firmly on the ground and back straight. The leader tells them they are rocks embedded in the sea. They should feel the cool and refreshing sea water against them. Tell them to take a deep breath of sea air and let it go gently, imagining the sound of seagulls in the distance. Tell them to breathe in and out slowly and gently, feeling each breath with their whole body. When their bodies are completely relaxed, gently tell them to slowly open their eyes. Have them discuss how this felt.

Game: Happy place
Minimum number of participants: 1 (and the Leader)
Resources needed: Clear space, mats
Instructions: The children should lie down on mats and close their eyes. Tell them to imagine they are in a place where they feel happy and safe. Tell them to think about: what they see; what they hear. Tell them in their happy place they should feel safe, peaceful and relaxed. Tell them to put their left hand on top of their right hand and that when they do this in future, they will go back to their happy place. Then gently ask them to slowly open their eyes.

 

Devise your own closure activity a and post in the comments.

 

 

Posted in Action Poems, Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, English teaching games, Mime, Mime for all ages, Mime for children, Mime for kids, Movement activities, Movement stories for children

More Fun Movement Games for Children

 

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Game: Call and Response
Age: 4 years +
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources: Clear space
Other Benefits: Creativity, focus, listening.
Instructions: Everyone sits in a circle. The teacher starts the activity by making a simple clapping rhythm. The rest of the circle repeats the rhythm. The child who is sitting next to the teacher takes a turn at making a simple clapping rhythm and the rest of the group copies it. When the group has got comfortable with the call and response technique the game can become a little more complicated. Each child must add on to the clapping rhythm that has gone before them. The child who is last in the round must remember everybody else clapping rhythm before they do their own.
Extension: Older children can stand in a circle and use different parts of their bodies to make the rhythms. For example they could use body percussion, stomping or tap dancing.

Game: Action Charades
Age: 4 years+
Minimum number of participants: 4
Resources: Clear space and a list of verbs.
Other Benefits: Critical thinking, creativity.
Instructions: If there is a large number of children divide them into groups of 4 or 5. Give each group a verb such as cleaning, cooking and swimming. One child will mime the verb to their group. The group members have a minute or two to guess the verb. . To reduce noise, have one group participate at a time, while the other group members watch.
Suggestions of Verbs:
Taste
Smell
Dance
Jog
Skate
Scream
Fight
Cry
Read
Write
Cook
Clean
Paint
Joke
Sleep
Sneeze

Game: Balloon Keepy Ups
Age: 4 years +
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources: Clear space, balloons.
Other Benefits: Coordination, imagination, spatial awareness.
Instructions: Divide the group into smaller groups of six to eight, hand each group a balloon, and ask them to form a circle holding hands. The teacher tells them that, on her/his cue, they are to put the balloon in the air between them and to keep it up using the body part the teacher calls (e.g., knees) without letting go of hands. They are to continue until the teacher calls out a different body part.
Suggestion of different body parts that can be used:
Arms
Legs
Chests
Elbow
Fingers
Knees
Fists
Noses
Heads
Thighs
Shoulders
Face 

For more fun movement games clock on the link below.

 

 

 

 

Posted in creative arts, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Esl Drama, fables, Panchatantra plays, Plays, Plays for Children

The Monkey and the Crocodile – A playscript for children

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Characters: Three storytellers, the crocodile, the crocodile’s wife and the monkey.

Storyteller 1: Once upon a time there lived a crocodile that lived in the river Ganges in India.
(Crocodile enters stage swimming slowly.)
Storyteller 2: On both sides of the Ganges there were large music fruit trees.
Storyteller 3: A monkey lived in one of the trees. He ate fruit all day.
(Monkey mimes eating fruit.)
Monkey: These fruits are so delicious and juicy I’m so lucky to live in a fruit tree.
(Crocodile sits under the tree for shade.)
Crocodile: It is very hot I think I will sit under this tree and sleep in the shade. (Looks up.) The fruits on tree look so delicious. I wish I could climb the tree and pick some.
Monkey: (climbs down from the tree) Since you are resting under my tree, you are my guest. Please come and taste some of my delicious fruits.
Storyteller 1: The monkey plucked the juiciest fruit off the tree and gave it to the crocodile.
Crocodile: Oh thank you Monkey you are so kind.
Monkey: You are welcome. Come again, any time.
Storyteller 2: Soon, the crocodile came every day. They would eat the fruit and talk to one another for hours.
(Crocodile and the monkey mime having a conversation and eating lots of fruits.)
Storyteller 3: One day as the crocodile was leaving to swim home. The monkey gave him some fruit.
Monkey: Crocodile give these fruits to your wife. I plucked them especially for her.
Storyteller 1: The crocodile swam home and gave the fruit to his wife, She was very happy.
(Crocodile swims home and gives his wife the fruit.)
Crocodile’s wife: These fruits are delicious. I have never tasted such sweet fruit in all my life. Where did you get them from?
Crocodile: I got them from my friend the monkey. He lives in the fruit tree so he knows which ones are the sweetest.
Crocodile’s wife: Does the monkey eat fruit every day?
Crocodile: Yes, only the sweetest and juiciest ones. Why do you ask?
Crocodile’s wife: Because that means his heart must be so sweet. If I eat his heart I would remain young and beautiful forever. You must steal the monkey’s heart and give it to me.
Crocodile: But he is my good friend. He is my only friend. It would be unfair for me to steal his heart.
Crocodile’s wife: (gets angry) If you loved me you would do it.
Crocodile: Do not get anger my dear, I will do as you wish.
Storyteller 2: The next day the crocodile swam to the riverbank and reached the tree where the monkey lived.
Monkey: Crocodile, you are late today. I thought you weren’t coming.
Crocodile: My wife has made a meal for you. She has invited you to tea because she wants to thank you for giving her your beautiful sweet fruit.
Monkey: That’s very kind of her but I’m a land animal, I can’t swim.
Crocodile: We live on a sand bank just jump on my back and I’ll take you there.
Storyteller 3: The monkey hopped on the crocodile’s back and away they went.
Monkey: Slow down, Croc. You are going too fast.
Crocodile: I’m sorry Monkey but I have to go fast because my wife wants to eat your heart for her tea.
Monkey: Oh Croc, you should have told me this before we left. I always keep my heart in the hollow of the tree for safe keeping.
Crocodile: I’ll take you back to the tree and you can collect your heart.
Monkey: That would be great.
Storyteller 1: Crocodile turns and swims back to the tree where the monkey lives upon reaching the bank the monkey jumps off the crocodiles back and clambers up the tree. After a while the crocodile says…..
Crocodile: Monkey, you must have found your heart by now. My wife will get angry if we don’t arrive soon.
Monkey: You are so foolish crocodile. Don’t you know your heart is within yourself? It was a trick to save my life. Now leave my tree and never come back again.
Storyteller 2: The crocodile left empty handed.
(Crocodile’s wife looks very angry.)
Storytellers: The moral of the story is at times presence of mind pays well.

For more plays based on Animal Stories click on the link below.

Posted in Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama strategies, Elements of Drama, English as a second language

Elements Of Drama for Children

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Belief
Role and Character
Action
Place
Time
Tension
Significance
Genre

The relationship between the drama elements.

Belief: How can the child be encouraged to enter into the drama with full belief? Evident in the child’s trust in and ease with make-believe play.

Role and Character: How will the child move from role playing to entering into character? Taking on the characteristics, attributes and thought process of another person.

Action: What is happening in the drama? Action in drama comes from the interaction between characters and situations in which they find themselves in the drama.

Place: Where is the action taking place? How is real place and space used to represent this?

Time: When is the action taking place? The fictional past and fictional future will have a bearing on the drama.

Tension: How will tension drive forward the action of the drama? The characters will be faced with choices, desires and uncertainties. Such tension causes characters to make decisions and moves the drama forward.

Significance: What is the relevance of the drama to the child’s life? How can the child relate to the drama?

Genre: What’s the genre? Naturalistic drama is the genre that most imitates life. Mainly for this age group the genres used are either naturalistic or fantasy. The children step into the world of make believe easily. The create a symbolic reality through which they can explore the real world and come to terms with its strangeness while remaining in the safety of their fictional world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Drama for children, drama for kids, fables, Plays, Plays for Children

The Lion and the Clever Rabbit – A Simple Play for Children.

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Characters: Three narrators, the rabbit, the lion, deer, elephant

Narrator 1: Once upon a time in a jungle in India.

Narrator 2: There lived a lion. He was very powerful and very cruel.

Narrator 3: He hunted and killed a lot of animals in the jungle. Sometimes he just hunted and killed for fun.

Rabbit: We have to stop this unnecessary killing.

Elephant: How can we stop the lion? He is too powerful.

Deer: Why don’t we have a meeting with the lion?

Fox: And see if we can reach an agreement.

Narrator 1: So all the animals in the jungle gathered together and invited the lion to the meeting.

Lion: What do you want?

Rabbit: Your majesty we are happy for you to be the King of the Jungle.

Deer: We are happy for you to rule the jungle,

Elephant: We understand that you need to kill us for food.

Lion: Why, that is most kind and understanding of you.

Rabbit: But you are killing animals for fun and not when you are hungry. And if you don’t stop there won’t be any animals left in jungle.

Lion: Well, what do you suggest?

Rabbit: We decided that we will send you an animal a day to your den. You can kill and eat it. You won’t have to go to the bother of hunting.

Lion: Well, that sounds like a good idea.

Narrator 3: The day arrived where it was the rabbits turn to go to the lion’s den.

Rabbit: I don’t want to go.

Other animals: You have to go if you don’t go he will kill the other animals. It was your idea.

Rabbit: I better go then.

Lion: Why are you late?

Rabbit: (out of breath) Your majesty it was not my fault. Another lion chased me no wanted to eat me. He said he was king of the jungle.

Lion: I’m the only King of the Jungle. Who is he? Take me to him at once. I shall kill him.

Rabbit: Come with me. I will show you where he lives.

Narrator 1: The lion followed the rabbit through the jungle.

Narrator 2: They reached a well.

Rabbit: He lives here.

Narrator 3.The rabbit roared and looked into the well. He saw his own reflection looking back at him.

Lion: I see him.

Rabbit: There can only be one King of the jungle. You must kill him.

Narrator 1: The lion jumped into the well and was taken away.
(The rabbit went off and told his friends what had happened.)
(They all had a big party to celebrate.)

For more drama activities and plays click on the link below.

 

Posted in Drama for children, drama for kids, English teaching games, Esl, fables, Fairy Tales, Hans Christian Andersen, King Midas, King Midas playscript, Legends

King Midas – A Play for Children.

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Characters: Three Narrators, King Midas, Dionysus, servant, Princess and Rover the dog

Narrator 1: In ancient Greece, there lived a King called Midas.

King Midas loved money more than anything else in the world.

Narrator 2: He loved to count his gold every day. (The king is sitting on the centre stage counting his bars of gold.)

King Midas: 4,936, 4937, 4938, I love gold more than anything. It makes me so happy.
(Enter Dionysus.)

Dionysus: I want to thank you Midas for letting me stay with you. You have been very kind.

King Midas: I’m glad you enjoyed your stay, Dionysus. You know you are always welcome here.

Dionysus: Midas: I wish to show you my appreciation by granting you a wish.

Narrator 3: The king was delighted and he thought carefully what he could wish for.

King Midas: I wonder what I could possibly wish for? (He thinks carefully for a while.) I know. Dionysus, Dionysus! I know what I want. I want everything that I touch to turn to gold.

Dionysus: (bows) Your wish is my command, Your Majesty. From now on everything you touch will turn to gold. Goodbye. (King Midas goes to shake his hand but Dionysus avoids him and runs off.)

King Midas: (waves) Goodbye Dionysus. Could it be true that everything I touch will turn to gold?
(He moves around the room and touches the chair, the chair which turns to gold and becomes heavy and he struggles to carry it. He rubs his hands with glee and then touches a book and then the table and everything turns to gold.)

King Midas: (does a little dance) I’m going to be even richer than I was before. All this work is making me hungry. (He tries to ring the bell for tea but that turns to gold and doesn’t ring.)

King Midas:
Never mind; Servant! Servant!
(Servant enters.)

Servant: (bows) You called, Your Majesty.

King Midas: I’m hungry, bring me my tea.

Servant: Yes, Your Majesty. (He walks backwards while bowing.)

Narrator 1: The servant brought King Midas his tea.
(Enter servant with the food but everything turns to gold when the king touches it. He tries eating it with just his mouth but that doesn’t work and his mouth hurts trying to eat the food.)

King Midas: Oh, dear, I’m so hungry. Servant, bring me my tennis racket and ball. (Servant brings him the tennis racket and ball and everything turns to gold. Rover the dog comes in and tries to get the ball and give it to the king but it is too heavy.)

Rover: Woof! Woof!

King Midas: Good boy, Rover. (He pats him and he turns to gold.)

King Midas: Poor Rover, but you will look good as a statue in the hall.
(Princess enters.)

Princess: (calling for Rover) Rover? Rover? Daddy, have you seen Rover. Oh, my, what a beautiful statue of Rover.

King Midas: You can have it if you like.

Princess: Oh, thank you, Daddy. (She goes to hug him.)

King Midas: Please don’t touch……. (King Midas tries to avoid her but it is too late and she turns to gold.)

King Midas: Me!?? Oh, no! what have I done? I have turned my only daughter into gold. (He starts to cry.) Dionysus, Dionysus, please come back. I have been so selfish. I’m so sorry.
(Dionysus appears.)

Dionysus: I think you have learned your lesson. I will take away your magic wish only if you promise not to love money so much.
(The princess and the dog start to move and they hug King Midas.)

Narrator 3: From that day on Midas was never selfish or greedy again.