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The Three Little Pigs Children’s Drama Workshop

Three Little Pigs and Scary Wolf Illustration

The Three Little Pigs – Drama Workshop

Each child finds a space and sits down. Each child or a group of children are assigned a specific word and a corresponding action.  The narrator/teacher reads the story aloud and when the children hear their word they must jump up and do their actions. The words are in bold to assist the teacher/narrator.

Movement: Action.

Any number: Show that number of fingers.

Little: Crouch down as small as you can.

Pig: Get on all fours and oink once.

Pigs: Get on all fours and oink twice.

Big: Stretch up as high as you can.

Bad: Make an angry face.

Wolf: Make hands into claws and say “aargh.”

Laughing: Laugh loudly.

Smiling: Big wide smile.

Trotted: Trot up and down the space.

Straw: Rub your hands together.

Sticks: Clap your hands together.

Bricks: Clap your hands on your thighs.

Huff/huffed: Blow.

Puff/puffed: Blow harder.

Blow\blew: Stamp feet on the ground.

Narrator: Once upon a time there was a mother pig that lived with her three little pigs. One day she said “Little pigs, I think it is time for you to leave and make your own way in this big world. You each need to build your own house.” The little pigs were very excited about their new, big adventure. Mother pig gave each of her little pigs a hug, but she warned them “Remember to watch out for the big bad wolf.” The little pigs waved goodbye to their mother and they trotted into the woods. They were laughing and smiling and soon they came across a man who was carrying some straw. The first little pig said, “may I have some straw to build my house.” The man said kindly, “Of course, you may.” The man gave the first little pig some straw to build his house. Just before they left the man warned them, “Watch out for the big bad wolf.” The first little pig built his house of straw. The two other pigs trotted on down the road. They were laughing and smiling and soon they came across a man who was carrying some sticks. The second little pig said, “May I have some sticks to build my house.” The man said kindly, “Of course, you may.” The man gave the second little pig some sticks to build his house. Just before they left the man warned them, “Watch out for the big bad wolf.” The second little pig built his house of sticks. The third little pig trotted on down the road. He was laughing and smiling and soon he came across a man who was carrying some bricks. The third little pig said, “May I have some bricks to build my house.” The man said kindly, “Of course, you may.” The man gave the third little pig some bricks to build his house. Just before they left the man warned him, “Watch out for the big bad wolf.” The third little pig built his house of bricks. The first little pig had just finished building his house of straw when the big bad wolf appeared. He said, “Little pig, little pig, let me come in.” The first little pig replied, “Not by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin.” Then the wolf said, Then I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I will blow the house down. So, he huffed, and he puffed, and he blew the house down. The first little pig trotted very quickly to his brother’s house made of sticks. The second little pig had just finished building his house of sticks when he heard a knock on the door and to his surprise it was his brother. Suddenly, the big bad wolf appeared. He said, “Little pig, little pig, let me come in.” The second little pig replied, “Not by hair of my chinny, chin, chin.” Then the wolf said, “Then I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I will blow the house down.” So, he huffed, and he puffed, and he blew the house down. The two little pigs trotted very quickly to their brother’s house made of bricks.

The third little pig had just finished building his house of bricks when he heard a knock on the door and to his surprise it was his two brothers. Suddenly, the big bad wolf appeared. He said, “Little pig, little pig, let me come in.” The third little pig replied, “Not by hair of my chinny, chin, chin.” Then the wolf said, “Then I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I will blow the house down.” The wolf huffed, and he puffed. He huffed, and he puffed but he couldn’t blow the house down. He heard the three little pigs inside the house. They were laughing. This made the wolf very angry indeed. He decided he would climb to the top of the roof and come down the chimney. The third little pig heard him on the roof and he came up with a clever plan. He put a big pot of boiling water on the fire which was just underneath the chimney. The wolf came tumbling down the chimney and landed into the big pot of boiling water and “SPLASH!” That was the end of the big bad wolf. The three little pigs lived happily ever after.

Warm up: One child is chosen or volunteers to be Mr. or Ms. Wolf and stands at one side of the clear space. His/Her back is to the other children, who are standing at the opposite end of the space. The rest of the children shout out: “What’s the time Mr. /Ms. Wolf?” The Wolf does not turn around. He/she replies in a rough, wolf-like voice: “four o’clock.” The children walk forward the number of steps the wolf calls out (in this case, four). The children ask again: “What time is it Mr./Ms. Wolf?” The wolf replies: “five o’clock.” The children take five steps forward. The children continue to ask the question and to walk the appropriate amount of steps forward. Eventually, when the wolf thinks that the children are near enough he/she will say: “Dinnertime!” Then the wolf turns around and chases the children. They have to try to rush back to their starting place. If Mr./Ms. Wolf catches one of them before they reach home, that child is the wolf in the next game.

Choral Speaking: Teach the children the following poem. Get them to think of different actions for the straw, sticks, bricks, pigs and wolf. They say the poem in unison.

Straw, Sticks and Bricks

Straw, sticks and bricks.

Straw, sticks and bricks.

The pigs built their houses

out of straw, sticks and bricks

The wolf came by,

he blew the straw down.

He blew the sticks but the bricks were strong

The pig lived happy all the days long

In their house of bricks.

Occupational Mime: Divide the class into groups of 4s. Three pigs and one wolf.  The pigs move round the room in a ‘follow my leader’ style. The pig at the front of the line is doing the actions. The first pig mimes collecting materials and building a house of straw. Second and third pigs follow, copying the mime. When the house is blown down by the wolf, the first pig moves to the end of the line. Second pig then heads the line and mimes building house of sticks. Finally, third pig takes a turn and mimes building a house of bricks. The wolf move around the room avoiding pigs as they build until it is time to blow the house down.

Role-play: Encourage different movements such as gathering straw, breaking sticks or lifting heavy bricks. Encourage the wolves to use their body and facial expression to look fierce and threatening. Give everyone in the group the opportunity to take on the role of the wolf. When the children are comfortable with the character movements, get them to use speech. Ask the following questions:

What does the wolf sound like?

What would he say to the little pigs?

What do the pigs sound like?

What would they say to the wolf?

Talking objects: Ask children if they can take on the role of the wolf. They use their breaths to blow down the house. Get them to huff and puff and huff and puff and blow the house down. Everyone sits in a circle and the teacher presents the group with objects that can be blown down by the breath, the wind or a hurricane such as leaf, balloon, paper, tree, car or even a bridge. Every child become an object, they enter the circle and gives the group some information who they are. For example: “I’m small, I’m green and live on a tree”. Once the rest of group have guess correctly everyone blows the object down.

Conclusion: The teacher discuss with the group reasons why the wolf gets very angry. The teacher asks the children wonder how they can  show  him show to use his breath to relax. The wolf uses his breath to blow things down but he could use his breath for relaxation exercises.

Relaxation technique: Tummy breathing – The children find their own space on the floor. They lie down and place their hands or a stuffed toy on their tummy. They inhale on a count of three. They see their tummy or stuffed toy rising as their tummy fills with air. They exhale on the count of four and they see their hands or stuffed toys falling. Repeat this process 10 times. When everyone is finished ask the children the following questions:

How do they feel?

What did they notice about their hands/stuffed toy when they inhaled and exhaled?

How would this relaxation/breathing exercise help the wolf?

Goldilocks and the Three Bears –  a drama workshop for children.

 

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Posted in Action Poems, Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama games for 3 year olds, Drama strategies, Drama workshop for childre, English as a second language, English teaching games, fables, Fairy Tales, Plays, Plays for Children, Role playing stories, Story sacks, Storytelling, Storytelling in the Early years, the lion and the mouse

The Lion and the Mouse: A fun drama workshop for young children.

The Lion and the Mouse.

Each child finds a space and sits down. Each child or a group of children are assigned a specific word and a corresponding action to the story the lion and the mouse. The narrator/teacher reads the story aloud, and when the children hear their word, they must jump up and do their actions. The words are in bold to assist the teacher/narrator.

Movement: Action.

Lion: Get down on hands and knees, and move around stealthily as a lion stalking his prey.

Mouse: Scamper like a mouse and squeak.

Forest: Make yourself into a large tree.

Roar/roared/roaring: Roar loudly like a lion.  

Eat: Do a gobbling action.

Help: Extend hands in a kindly gesture.

Narrator: One day, a lion was fast asleep in the forest, his head resting on his paw and he was snoring away. A timid little mouse came scampering by him and accidentally scampered across the lion’s nose. The lion woke up with a loud roar. The lion laid his huge paw angrily on the timid little mouse. He roared, “I’m going to eat you up.”

“Don’t eat me!” begged the poor mouse. “Please let me go and someday I will help you.”

The lion was much amused to think that a mouse could ever help him. But he was generous and finally let the mouse go.

Some days later, while walking in the forest, the lion was caught in a hunter’s net. Unable to free himself, he filled the forest with his angry roaring. The mouse heard the roar and quickly found the lion trapped in the net. Running to one of the great ropes that bound him, she chewed it until it fell apart, and soon the lion was free.

“You laughed when I said one day I would help you,” said the mouse. “Now, you see that even a mouse can help a lion.”

They hugged, and from then on, the lion and the mouse were very good friends.

Introduction:

Ask the children to name different jungle animals. They discuss what they can do, what they eat, where they live in the jungle. Then each child chooses their favour it’s jungle animal. The teacher goes around the circle and each child get an opportunity to speak about its favorite jungle animal

My favorite animal is …..

It’s …….

It’s got……..

It lives in………

It eats …….

It moves like………..

Warm up:

Children are running through the ‘jungle’ and run into many animals, etc that they need to get away from. The teacher can give appropriate commands, and the children carry out a suitable action:

jump over logs

duck under branches

high knees through quicksand

run from the tiger

tip toe past the snake

talk to the monkeys (ooh, ooh, aah, aah), etc.

This really gets kids’ hearts pumping and they have a blast!

Main Focus of workshop:

The Lion’s Court: Before starting this game it is a good idea for the teacher to talk about the different animals that are found in the jungle. The teacher should ask the children who is the King of the Jungle? The teacher then assumes the role of a lion who is the King of the Jungle. It would be a good idea to have a crown for the lion. The children can make a court for the lion with chairs and a table or with cushions. Inside the court the lion sits on a throne. Each child chooses an animal they would like to pretend to be. The lion tells the other animals he is looking for animals to join his court. One by one he calls all the animals to him and asks them why he should let them join his court. The child must say what type of animal they are and what good qualities they have and how they will be useful to the lion, the King of the Jungle. When they have finished the King says “you may join my court” and lets them in. This is why it is a good idea to designated area in the jungle.

Dramatic play is a great way to teach important communication skills to children. Jungles hold a fascination for children, and incorporating drama workshop with a jungle theme can be fun for both  teachers and  children  alike. Add music, costumes and props to your dramatic play if possible.

Closure:

Sleeping Lions: All the children are lions (tigers, cows or any animal they want to be). They lie down on the floor; eyes closed and stay still, as if they were sleeping. The teacher goes around the room, trying to get the lions to move. If they move, then they have to get up and help the teacher to try to get the other lions to move. They are not allowed to touch the lions, but may move close to them, tell jokes or pull faces. After five minutes, with a loud roar, tell the lions who are still on the floor to wake up. 

For more drama ideas for young children click on Amazon.com

For more drama activities about Aesop’s Fables, click on the links below.

Aesop’s Fables

The Lion and the Mouse – a rhyming play.

The Lion and the Mouse – a fun movement story

 

 

Posted in Action Poems, Animal Stories, Bear Hunt, Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama games for 3 year olds, Drama games for 4 year olds, Drama strategies, Drama workshop for childre, English as a second language, Esl, Esl Drama, Fairy Tales, Goldilocks anD the three bears, Role playing stories, Storytelling, Storytelling in the Early years, Storytelling techniques, Voice Production

Goldilocks and the Three Bears Workshop for children.

image_2ecde2fa-3b51-4ab9-b4b8-d32ee2707fbe
Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

Each child finds a space and sits down. Each child or a group of children are assigned a specific word and a corresponding action. The narrator/teacher reads the story aloud, and when the children hear their word, they must jump up and do their actions. The words are in bold to assist the teacher/narrator.

Movement: Action

Goldilocks: Skip around the space.

Bear/Bears: Walk slowly and growl.

Bowl/Bowls: Clasp fingers together and stick out arms to make a round shape.

Porridge: Wiggle body up and down.

Chair/s: Squat down and stick out arms.

Bed/s: Lies straight on the floor.

First: Holds up one finger.

Second: Holds up two fingers.

Third: Holds up three fingers.

Narrator: Once upon a time, there was a girl called Goldilocks. One day, she decided to go for a walk in the woods. Soon, she became tired. She saw a little cottage in the woods. She knocked, but there was no answer, so she decided to go inside and rest.

At the table in the kitchen, there were three bowls of porridge. Goldilocks was hungry. She tasted the porridge from the first bowl.

“This porridge is too hot!” she exclaimed.

So, she tasted the porridge from the second bowl.

“This porridge is too cold,” she said.

So, she tasted the third bowl of porridge.

“Ahhh, this porridge is just right,” she said happily, and she ate it all up.

After she’d eaten the three bears’ breakfasts, she decided she was feeling a little tired. So, she walked into the living room where she saw three chairs. Goldilocks sat in the first chair to rest her feet.

“This chair is too big!” she exclaimed.

So she sat in the second chair.

“This chair is too big, too!” she whined.

So she tried the third and smallest chair.

“Ahhh, this chair is just right,” she sighed. But just as she settled down into the chair to rest, it broke into pieces!

Goldilocks was very tired by this time, so she went upstairs to the bedroom. She lay down in the first bed, but it was too hard. Then she lay in the second bed, but it was too soft. Then she lay down in the third bed, and it was just right. Goldilocks fell asleep.

As she was sleeping, the three bears came home.

“Someone’s been eating my porridge,” growled the Papa bear.

“Someone’s been eating my porridge,” said the Mama bear.

“Someone’s been eating my porridge, and they ate it all up!” cried the Baby bear.

“Someone’s been sitting in my chair,” growled the Papa bear.

“Someone’s been sitting in my chair,” said the Mama bear.

“Someone’s been sitting in my chair, and they’ve broken it all to pieces,” cried the Baby bear.

They decided to look around some more, and when they got upstairs to the bedroom, Papa bear growled, “Someone’s been sleeping in my bed,”

“Someone’s been sleeping in my bed, too,” said the Mama bear

“Someone’s been sleeping in my bed, and she’s still there!” exclaimed Baby bear.

Just then, Goldilocks woke up and saw the three bears. She screamed, “Help!” And she jumped up and ran out of the room. Goldilocks ran down the stairs, opened the door, and ran away into the woods. And Goldilocks never returned to the home of the three bears.

Introduction: Show the children pictures. Tell there are 8 different types of bears. There are eight species in the bear family: The Asiatic Black Bear, Brown Bear, North American Black Bear, Panda Bear, Polar Bear, Sloth Bear, Spectacled Bear, and the Sun Bear.

Warm up: The warm up is a movement activity called “Does a Bear Live in the Woods?”

A clear space is needed. The teacher explains to the class that when they come across a bear in the woods they must lie down on the ground and keep very still. One child volunteers to be the bear. The bear goes to one end of the clear space and turns his/her back on the rest of the class. All the other children try to sneak up behind the bear. When the bear turns around all the children must lie very still on the ground. If the bear sees you, moving s/he pulls you away to join him/her. Then there are two bears. Eventually all the children are caught moving and become bears. 

Voice production:

Tell the children that they are going to explore different voices. We need to change our voices to show different emotions or become different characters.

Get the group to repeat the following lines together in their normal voices

Who has been sitting in my chair?

Who has eating my porridge?

Who has been sleeping in my bed.

Now get the children to say the lines the following ways:

Loud

Quiet

Fast

Slow

Sad

Happy

Angry

Excited

Surprised

Frightened

Annoyed

Role Play: “Now we are going to warm up our bodies. Everyone find a space and walk around the room as yourself. When I say freeze I will call out different ways of walking….

Walk as

Daddy bear

Mummy bear

Baby bear

Goldilocks

Grumpy daddy bear

Kind mummy bear

Happy baby bear

Surprised Goldilocks”.

Sculpting: Divide the class into pairs. One of the pair is the sculptor the other us the clay. Get the sculptor to mould the clay into

How  goldilocks felt when the bears found her. 

How did baby bear feel when he saw that his porridge had been eaten. 

How did mummy bear feel when she saw that someone had been sleeping in her bed. 

How daddy bear fell when he saw Goldilocks sleeping in the bed.  

It can be abstract. The teacher/children look at each sculpture and guess how the characters are feeling.

Movement Poetry:

When Goldilocks Went to the House of the Bears

When Goldilocks went to the house of the bears, (The children walk on the spot.) Oh, what did her blue eyes see? (The children point to their eyes.)

A bowl that was huge and a bowl that was small and a bowl that was tiny and that was all. (Children make increasingly smaller shapes with their arms to represent each bowl.) And she counted them – one, two, three! (They use one finger to point – as if counting each bowl.)

When Goldilocks went to the house of the bears, (Walk on the spot.)Oh, what did her blue eyes see? (Point to their eyes.)

A chair that was huge and a chair that was small, and a chair that was tiny and that was all. (Use hands to show the different heights and the size of each chair, getting smaller all the time.) And she counted them – one, two, three! (Use their fingers to point, as if counting each chair.)

When Goldilocks went to the house of the bears, (Walk on the spot.) Oh, what did her blue eyes see? (Point to their eyes.)

A bed that was huge and a bed that was small and a bed that was tiny and that was all. (Use their hands to show the increasingly smaller length and size of each bed.) And she counted them – one, two, three! (Use their fingers to point, as if counting each bed.)

When Goldilocks went to the house of the bears. (Walk on the spot.) Oh, what did her blue eyes see? (Point to their eyes.)

A bear that was huge and a bear that was small and a bear that was tiny and that was all. (Use hands to show the increasingly smaller height and size of each bear.)

Closure: The Bears are Coming

The teacher tells the children before we had the internet, cars, computers, trains, planes, washing machines, hoovers, people had to chop wood. Talk about type of jobs people did in the olden days. All the children then have to find some physical action, based on an old fashioned job like wood chopping, hunting, or washing clothes and begin doing this action somewhere in the room.

The teacher/volunteer then leaves the room momentarily and returns as the bear. Once the bear arrives, the children  must freeze where they are, and  the bear  must try to make the other children  laugh. If a child laughs they’ve come a bear and the bears work together until they have made everyone laugh. The bears cannot touch the frozen children!

For a variety of Goldilocks and the three bears books, click on Amazon.com

 

Goldilocks and the Three Bears – Movement story

Storytelling in the Early Years.

 

Posted in Action Poems, Bear Hunt, Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama games for 3 year olds, Drama games for 4 year olds, Drama strategies, Drama workshop for childre, Elements of Drama, fables, Fairy Tales, Freeze Frame, Goldilocks anD the three bears, Movement activities, Movement stories for children, Plays, Plays for Children, Still image, Storytelling, Storytelling in the Early years, Storytelling techniques

Goldilocks and the Three Bears – A drama workshop for children

 

 

image_2ecde2fa-3b51-4ab9-b4b8-d32ee2707fbeWarm up – Tell the children that they are going to explore different voices. We need to change our voices to show different emotions or become different characters.

Get the group to repeat the following lines together in their normal voices
Who has been sitting in my chair?
Who has eating my porridge?
Who has been sleeping in my bed.

Now get the children to say the lines the following ways:
Loud
Quiet
Fast
Slow
Sad
Happy
Angry
Excited
Surprised
Frightened
Annoyed

“Now we are going to warm up our bodies. Everyone find a space and walk around the room as yourself. When I say freeze I will call out different ways of walking….
Walk as
Daddy bear
Mummy bear
Baby bear
Goldilocks
Grumpy daddy bear
Kind mummy bear
Happy baby bear
Surprised Goldilocks”.

Main Focus:
Read the movement story Goldilocks and the three bears. Click on the link.

 

Goldilocks and the Three Bears Movement Story for children.

When Goldilocks went to the house of the Bears – movement poetry. Click on the link below.

Action Poems for Young Children – Movement

Closure: In groups of 4 make a still image of your favorite scene. Present your still image to the rest of the class.

For more drama activities for young children, click here.

Goldilocks and the Three Bears – Movement story

Storytelling in the Early Years.

 

Posted in Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama strategies, Elements of Drama, English as a second language, English teaching games, Esl, Esl Drama, Getting to know you games

Back to school “Getting to Know you Games”

Group Of Children With Teacher Enjoying Drama Class Together

Back to school “Getting to Know you Games”

Game: Data Processing
Level: Elementary+
Other benefits: The main aim of this activity is to provide the students
with the opportunity to ask each other personal questions. The game can
also be used to develop listening skills.
Minimum number of participants: 4
Resources needed: Clear space.
Instructions: Get the class to work together and get them to get into a
straight line:
• Alphabetically by their first name
• Alphabetically by their surnames
• Alphabetically by their best friend’s name
• By hair length
• By shoe size
• By birthdays
• By how many brothers and sisters you have
Extension: If the students are more advanced, get them to do this exercise
by not using sound. They can only use body movements and gestures.

Game: Action Name Game
Level: Beginners+
Other benefits: This is another effective but simple game to practice
greetings and introductions. It also promotes awareness and teamwork
skills.
Minimum number of participants: 4
Resources needed: Clear space.
Instructions: Have everyone sit in circle. The first student says, “Hi
my name is ____” The student then does an action, and the rest of the
group says, “Hi _____, pleased to meet you,” and repeats the action.
This continues until everyone has a chance and the rest of the group has
greeted them and repeated their action.

Game: Adjective Introduction
Level: Beginners+
Other benefits: This is a good game for both learning classmates’ names
and practising adjectives.
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources needed: Clear space, ball or a bean bag.
Instructions: The students form a circle and the teacher gives one of
them a bean bag or a ball. When they have the ball/beanbag, they must
introduce themselves and say an adjective that best describes them, for
example “Hi, my name is Annie and I’m funny.” When Annie is finished
introducing herself, she throws the ball to someone else in the circle. This
continues until everyone has had a turn.
Extension: To make this activity more difficult for more advanced
students, the adjective they choose must start with the same letter as their

Other links:

More ESL Games

ESL Storytelling Activities

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

cropped-img_0052.jpg
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. For more closure or relaxation activity click on the link below.

Posted in Christmas drama games, Christmas plays, Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama strategies, English as a second language, English teaching games, Fairy Tales, Hans Christian Andersen, Plays, Plays for Children, Role playing stories

Christmas Drama Games for Children

 

christmas tree

Game: What’s the time Santa Claus?
Age: 3 years +
Minimum number of participants: 4
Resources needed: Clear space.
Benefits: This activity is based on a popular traditional children’s game that can also be used very
effectively in a drama session as a warm-up game. This game also helps children with their listening
and co-ordination skills.
Instructions: One child is chosen or volunteers to be Santa Claus and stands at one side of the clear space. His/Her back is to the other children, who are standing at the opposite end of the
space. The rest of the children shout out: “What’s the time Santa Claus?” Santa Claus does not turn around. He/she replies: “four o’clock.” The children walk forward the number of steps that Santa Claus calls out (in this case, four). The children ask again: “What time is it Santa Claus?” Santa Claus replies: “five o’clock.” The children take five steps forward. The children continue to ask the question and to walk the appropriate number of steps forward. Eventually, when Santa Claus thinks that the children are near enough he/she will say: “Christmas time!” Then, Santa Claus turns around and chases the children. They must try to rush back to their starting place. If
Santa Claus catches one of them before they reach home, that child is Santa Clausin the next game.

 

Game: Elves and Reindeers
Age: 5 years+
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources needed: Clear space.
Benefits: The children work as part of a pair but it helps them practise giving clear directions to
their partners.
Instructions: This is a fun game that children enjoy. Divide the group into pairs. Child A is the
Elf and child B is the reindeer. The elf must guide the reindeer around the clear space by giving
them very specific directions. The elf can say for example: “go ten steps forwards” or “put your
hands in the air and turn around five times”. The elf must make sure that their reindeers do not bump into other elves and reindeers in the group. They can switch roles after a few minutes.

 

Game: Mrs Claus’s Knickers
Age: 5 years +
Minimum number of participants: 3
Resources needed: Clear space.
Benefits: This helps to improve eye contact and children body language. It also stimulates the
imagination as the children must come up with unique questions.
Instructions: The children sit in a circle. One child sits in the middle of the circle and everyone
in the circle takes it in turns to ask him/her a question, for example: “What did you have for
breakfast?” The child in the middle is only allowed to answer “Mrs Claus’s Knickers’ and they must not laugh or smile. If they laugh or smile they must change places with the child who ask the question.

Posted in Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, Drama strategies, Elements of Drama, English as a second language, Esl Drama, Fairy Tales, Movement activities, Movement stories for children, Storytelling in the Early years, The Enormous Turnip

The Enormous Turnip – Drama workshop for children

Read the story of “The Enormous Turnip”

Warm up: Enormous, Enormous Turnip. All the children except the child who is It, sit in a circle. It walks around the circle, tapping each player on the head, saying “Enormous” each time until he decides to tap someone and say “Turnip” That child becomes the turnip and runs after It, trying to tag him before It can take his seat. If It successfully reaches the turnip’s seat without being tagged, the turnip is the new It. If the turnip tags It, then the turnip keeps his spot in the circle and It must either continue to be It for another turn or sit in the middle of the circle until another It is tagged.

Circle time: Ask the children to sit in the circle. Ask them if they can name the different characters in the story. Ask the following questions:
How would the different characters move? What would they sound like?
What do you think they were doing before they were called to help with the Turnip?
How do they feel about pulling the Turnip up and eating it?

Character exploration: Get the children find their own space in the room. When the teacher calls out a character the children have to become the character and move around the room.
Old Man: Hunches over and moves very slowly with a walking stick.
Wife: Busy doing housework and moves very busily and quickly.
Boy: Plays football, does headers, keepy ups and scores goals.
Girl: Skips along happily.
Dog: Moves like a dog and barks.
Cat: Moves like a cat and meows.
Mouse: Moves like a mouse and squeaks.

Movement story: https://dramastartbooks.com/2017/10/08/2712/ Get the children to participate in the above Enormous Turnip Movement Story.

Mime: All the children find a space and they curl up and imagine that they are a turnip seed. The seed are get bigger and bigger until eventually they grow into a large Turnip and are pulled from the earth.

Still image: They make a still image of the moment they find out that they are going to be turned into turninip soup.

Thought tracking: The teacher goes and taps each Turnip on the shoulder and they must say one word how they feel about being eaten for dinner.
Voice exploration: Each child says the following sentence
Please, please don’t eat me for your dinner.”
In a happy voice
Sad voice,
Surprised voice,
Shocked voice,
Tired voice,
Angry voice,
Scared voice,
Excited voice.

Group work: Divide the class in to groups of 3 or 4. The group have to use their bodies to make the one big, Enormous Turnip. They have to move as the turnip but stay connected.

Freeze Frame: Divide the class into groups of 8. Each group have to make six still images that tell the story. They can show it to the other groups.
Improvisation: For older children they can add dialogue to their freeze frames.

Closure: The children stand in a circle. Child A says “If I had a turnip, I would turn it in to an Apple.” Child B says “If I had a turnip, I would turn it in to an Apple and a banana.” Child C says “If I had a turnip, I would turn it in to an Apple, a banana and a cat” and so on until everyone gets a chance. If they make a mistake or stumble they are eliminated and sit down.. The last child standing at the end wins.

For more play scripts based on Fairytales, click here.

Posted in Drama, Drama Activities for children, Drama for children, drama for kids, Drama strategies, Goldilocks anD the three bears, Hans Christian Andersen, Role playing stories, Story sacks, Storytelling, Storytelling in the Early years, Storytelling techniques, Therapeutic Story

Storytelling in the Early Years

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Benefits of Storytelling in the Early Years:

 Promote a feeling of well-being and relaxation
Increase children’s willingness to communicate thoughts and feelings
Encourage active participation
Increase verbal proficiency
Encourage use of imagination and creativity
Encourage cooperation between students
Enhance listening skills

Identify the children’s interest
• Animals
• Superhero stories
• Stories about thing children like to do – getting dirt, playing with friends, first experiences.
Where do you find good stories?
• Made up stories
• Picture books
• Family stories.

Key elements of a successful story time
• Know and like your story
• Know and like your audience
• Make sure they match each other
• Be flexible.

The secret to making stories exciting and fun
• Vocal production
• Body Language.

Vocal Production
The following three core elements of vocal production need to be understood for anyone wishing to be an effective speaker:
• Volume – to be heard.
• Clarity – to be understood.
• Variety – to add interest.

Volume
This is not a question of treating the voice like the volume control on the TV remote. Some people have naturally soft voices and physically cannot bellow. Additionally, if the voice is raised too much, tonal quality is lost. Instead of raising the voice it should be ‘projected out’. Support the voice with lots of breath – the further you want to project the voice out, the more breath you need.
When talking to a group or meeting, it is important to never aim your talk to the front row or just to the people nearest you, but to consciously project what you have to say to those furthest away. By developing a strong voice, as opposed to a loud voice, you will be seen as someone positive.

Clarity
Some people tend to speak through clenched teeth and with little movement of their lips. It is this inability to open mouths and failure to make speech sounds with precision that is the root cause of inaudibility. The sound is locked into the mouth and not let out. To have good articulation it is important to unclench the jaw, open the mouth and give full benefit to each sound you make, paying particular attention to the ends of words. This will also help your audience as a certain amount of lip-reading will be possible.

Variety
To make speech effective and interesting, certain techniques can be applied. However, it is important not to sound false or as if you are giving a performance. Whilst words convey meaning, how they are said reflects feelings and emotions. Vocal variety can be achieved by variations in:
Pace: This is the speed at which you talk. If speech is too fast then the listeners will not have time to assimilate what is being said. Nevertheless, it is a good idea to vary the pace – quickening up at times and then slowing down – this will help to maintain interest.
Volume: By raising or lowering volume occasionally, you can create emphasis. If you drop your voice to almost a whisper (as long as it is projected) for a sentence or two, it will make your audience suddenly alert, be careful not to overuse this technique.
Pitch – Inflection – Emphasis: When speaking in public, try to convey the information with as much vocal energy and enthusiasm as possible. This does not mean your voice has to swoop and dive all over the place in an uncontrolled manner. Try to make the talk interesting and remember that when you are nervous or even excited, vocal chords tense and shorten causing the voice to get higher. Emphasise certain words and phrases within the talk to convey their importance and help to add variety.
Pause: Pauses are powerful. They can be used for effect to highlight the preceding statement or to gain attention before an important message. Pauses mean silence for a few seconds. Listeners interpret meaning during pauses so have the courage to stay silent for up to five seconds – dramatic pauses like this convey authority and confidence.

BodyLanguage
Remember that you can convey so many feelings, attitudes and actions with your body. Apart from expressing emotion, you can use your body to act out character’s descriptions or episodes within the story.Bring your whole body into the story and you are onto a winning storytelling technique.For example, how would you act out a cowboy galloping along on his horse? This would probably involve your legs, your arms and moving your whole body in imitation of the rider.Bring your pirate to life by closing one eye to illustrate his patched eye, clench your fist and stick out a hooked finger for his ‘hook’ hand, and limp along for his peg leg. How would you act out a Ninja? You might do karate chops and raise your leg into the air as well as jerky head movements.

Ways to practice your storytelling technique
Record on your phone
• A mirror will let you observe your face and body
• Going over it in your head while driving, walking or on a bus. This will bring out the imaginative sparks.
• Relax and taking it too seriously will lead to a lack of enthusiasm and fun.

Participation stories
Children love to move, to see things develop in front of them and they love to talk, laugh and make themselves part of the story.
• Refairns -Breathing – take a deep breath just before you want to join them. “And the the giant said …..”
• Hand gestures
• Conduct the children with a sweeping motion
• Children will begin repeating when repetition become obvious, if you let them know what you want.
Actions
How to make sure the children are focused during story time
Play a game of Magic Glue. Get everybody to stand up. Tell them to pick up their right leg with your hands. Now stick it to the floor with the magic glue. Push it down really hard in to the ground. Ask them “Is it stuck? Everybody stuck? Good, Now your left leg. Can you move your feet off the floor? You can show all sort of movements as you show them your feet is stuck to the floor. Have fun with it. Say things like “let’s run with our feet stuck to the floor, let jump with our feet stuck to floor, let’s skip with our feet stuck to the floor.
Sounds
• Insert sounds for words such as bell – ringing sound, giant – stomping sound.
Individual parts
If you are going to do this choose a very repetitive story such as Goldilocks and the three bears.

Game: Pop-up Story Book
Age: 3 years+
Minimum number of participants: 2
Resources needed: Clear space, a story book.
Other Benefits: This is an excellent listening game that can be played with any number of children. It helps them to engage in the storytelling process.
Instructions: The teacher chooses a story to read that the children are familiar with. Each child is given a word. For example if the teacher was reading ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’, child A is given the word Goldilocks, child B, baby, child C, porridge, child D, bed and so on. When each child has been given a word the game can begin. All the children lie on the floor. When the child hears his/her word s/he must jump up. If they miss their turn they are out and can’t pop-up anymore.

Movement Story

The-Hare-And-The-Tortoise-001

Read the following movement story to the children. When they hear any of words underlined they must do the corresponding action. The teacher should go through each action at the beginning.
Boast/boastful/boasting – stand up straight and puff out chest
Woods – children make themselves into trees.
Animals – each child choose a different animal found in the woods and move like that animal.
Hare – make bunny ears with your hands.
Fast – children move as fast as they can
Run/ran – run on the spot
Tortoise – children bend over as if they have something heavy on their back.
Slow/slowly – children move in slow motion around the room.
Once upon a time there was a very boastful hare who lived in a woods with lots of other animals. He was always boasting about how fast he could run. He boasted “I’m the fastest animal in the woods. No one can run as fast as me.” The other animals were tired of listening to him. One day the tortoise said to the hareHare, you are so boastful. I challenge you to race.” Hare laughed and said “Tortoise, you will never beat me. You are too slow and steady.” They decided whoever got to the other side of the woods the fastest was the winner. All the other animals in the woods came to watch the race. The hare ran as fast as he could through the woods. After a while he thought to himself “I’m so fast that slow tortoise will never beat me. I think I will take a quick nap.” Soon, he fell asleep. The tortoise walked slowly through the woods. He passed the sleeping hare. The animals watched the tortoise near the finishing line. The animals cheered loudly. The hare woke up and ran as fast as he could through the woods to the finishing line but it was too late. The slow tortoise had won the race. All the animals in the wood congratulated the tortoise. The hare had to remind himself that he shouldn’t boast about his fast pace because slow and steady won the race.

More Movement Stories and Activities can be found in Movememt Start. Click below.

Other Storytelling Techniques

IMG_0284Story Stones

This is an excellent storytelling technique. Collect stones and put little pictures on them. Each child chooses a stone and the group can make a collective story.

The pictures on the stones influence the direction of the story. Once the children get use to idea of telling stories, you can get them to share their own stories. The story stones can be used to explore tell individual stories.

 

Story Path

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This story telling technique is known as a story path. It is fun and inexpensive. The children take it in turns to travel along a path which is a long sheet of paper with a hand drawn path and various images in order to tell a story. The story can be focused or they can make up the story as they go, The children can help create the path. The teacher can discuss the important elements of the story and deciding on appropriate images or cues can be a group decision.

Storytelling Jar

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To keep storytelling fun and exciting you can use a storytelling Jar. Fill the jar with coloured notes and on each not put a word or a picture. Everyone selects a note and the story can be decisive from the note. This can be a collective story or children can individually tell a story.

Story Cubes

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Just like the story stones and storytelling prompts jar, the DIY stone cubes can be used to provide some inspiration on how to start your story. Follow the instructions over at the “grey luster girl” website to create your own story cubes. Once done, you can toss the cubes around and see what object they land on. Whatever you land on, that’s the object you can include in your storytelling! You can also use multiple story cubes to structure your story. For example your story cubes can be used decide on the hero in your story, the setting, the villain and any other extra props to include.
http://greylustergirl.com/diy-story-cubes-travel-game/
You can also buy story cubes at https://www.storycubes.com

Story Sacks

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What is a Story Sack?
A story sack is a teaching and learning resource. Typically it is a large cloth bag containing a favourite children’s books along with supporting materials to help make sharing the book more engaging and interesting.

Why make a Story Sack?
Story sacks are fun way for educators and children to share stories together, They were developed by Neil Griffiths as a popular, no threatening way to encourage educators and parents to start to share stories with children in a way that is positive, expressive, interactive and fun.

Who uses Story Sacks?
Originally, it was mainly schools and preschools that used story sacks however they are increasingly used by other groups such as childminders, libraries health visitors, speech therapists, play specialists, social workers, children’s hospitals, family centres and adult learned.

How do you make a Story Sack?
Start with a cloth bag or you can use a pillow case, a basket or a box, you just need something to contain your resources, Then you need to choose your story. You need to fill the sack with items. Here are some if things that are often included:
• Soft toys/ puppets of the main characters
• Costumes/props/scenery/photos to support the story
• An audio recording/video of the story
• A language based game
• A non related non fiction book
• Craft and activity ideas
Things to remember when choosing Story Sack items
Read and re-read your story. Ask yourself what are the main themes, who are the main characters, settings, colours, numbers, letters, sounds, communication/ listening skills. Can you incorporate first experience, new vocabulary and other topic based activities? What other activities can you link to the book that you have chosen.

Here are some ideas for story sacks based on famous stories
The hungry caterpillar by Eric Carle
• Soft toy caterpillar/butterfly
• Lifecycle of a butterfly
• Days of the weeks/number sequencing cards
• Play food props
• Non fiction books about butterflies/caterpillars
• Activity ideas – fruit printing, painting butterflies.

Little red riding hood
• A little red riding hood doll
• Puppets for wolf/grandma/woodcutter
• A basket full of flowers
• A red cloak
• Pictures of forest
• Non fiction book about the forest/wolves
• Activity ideas – recipe for making cakes for grandma.

Include some learning targets and a short guide of questions to ask/discussion points to consider and other ideas to extend the activity. Finally, it is worth laminating the activity idea cards to protect them and including a list of what is in the bag so nothing gets lost.
For more information and ideas on Story Sacks
http://www.literacytrust.org.uk/assets/0000/3210/Story_sack_guide.pdf
http://www.twinkl.co.uk/resources/story-sack-resource-pac

Posted in Drama for children, Drama strategies, English as a second language, Esl, Esl Drama, fables, Freeze Frame, Hot seating, Movement activities, Movement stories for children, Still image, teacher in role, The Hare and the Tortoise

The hare and the tortoise, a fun drama workshop for children.

image

Read the following movement story to the children. When they hear any of words in bold they must do the corresponding action. The teacher should go through each action at the beginning.

Boast/boastful/boasting – stand up straight and puff out chest
Woods – children make themselves into trees.
Animals – each child choose a different animal found in the woods and move like that animal.
Hare – make bunny ears with your hands.
Fast – children move as fast as they can
Run/ran – run on the spot
Tortoise – children bend over as if they have something heavy on their back.
Slow/slowly – children move in slow motion around the room.

Once upon a time there was a very boastful hare who lived in a woods with lots of other animals. He was always boasting about how fast he could run. He boasted “I’m the fastest animal in the woods. No one can run as fast as me.” The other animals were tired of listening to him. One day the tortoise said to the hareHare, you are so boastful. I challenge you to race.” Hare laughed and said “Tortoise, you will never beat me. You are too slow and steady.” They decided whoever got to the other side of the woods the fastest was the winner. All the other animals in the woods came to watch the race. The hare ran as fast as he could through the woods. After a while he thought to himself “I’m so fast that slow tortoise will never beat me. I think I will take a quick nap.” Soon, he fell asleep. The tortoise walked slowly through the woods. He passed the sleeping hare. The animals watched the tortoise near the finishing line. The animals cheered loudly. The hare woke up and ran as fast as he could through the woods to the finishing line but it was too late. The slow tortoise had won the race. All the animals in the wood congratulated the tortoise. The hare had to remind himself that he shouldn’t boast about his fast pace because slow and steady won the race.

Physical warm up: Get each child to find a clear space. They must make sure that they are not touching anyone else. The children crouch down on the floor and make a ball shape with their bodies. The
teacher explains that all children are magic rocks and that the teacher is a magic wizard. The teacher waves the magic wand and says: “Magic rocks turn into hares.” All the children turn into hares and move around the room as hares. The teacher then says: “Magic rocks turn into magic rocks.” The children return to their clear spaces and crouch down on the floor again as quickly as possible. The magic wizard can change the magic rocks into animal they can be found in the jungle.
Variation: The children can take it turns to be the magic wizard.

Role on the wall: Divide the class into groups of four. Give each group either an outline of the hare or the tortoise and ask the children to write inside the image the different characteristics or personality traits of the hare or the tortoise. If they are too young to write, get them to draw inside the image. Each group talks about their image and what they put inside.

Still Image: Ask each child to make a still image of the Hare at the beginning of the race. The teacher taps each child on the shoulder and they must say how they feel. Then get them to make a still image of the hare at the end of the race. The teacher taps each child on the shoulder and they must say how they feel. Can they tell the difference?

Freeze Frame: Divide the class into pairs. They have to make six images that tell the story of the hare and the tortoise. They then show their freeze frame to the rest of the class.

Teacher in Role: The teacher takes on the role of the tortoise. She tells the children she feels sorry for the hare because he thought he was the fastest in the forest and now he is upset. Ask the children what do they suggest they could do to make him feel better.

Hot seating: One of the children volunteers to be the hare. The hare sits in the hot seat and the rest of the children asks him questions.

Closure: The children sit in a circle. Each child finishes the following sentences “if I could be an animal I would be a………

Turn on some music and everyone dances as their animal.

Click here for more children’s plays based on Aesop’s fables.