22nd January 2013
This week in Playwriting we start by looking at Cause & Effect. In groups the children come up with one random event each…
A pigeon flies into the engine of a plane.
A man throws a rugby ball and hits someone in the head.
A leprechaun sits on a rainbow in someone’s house.
A woman screams when she sees a rat.
We talk about how none of these things are linked to each other and how hard it is to link them without lots more explanation. Perhaps the woman screaming at the rat might make the rugby player throw the ball the wrong way and hit someone on the head – this is the best we can come up with. So next the children create three events that are linked by Cause and Effect. We talk about cups falling and smashing (only not in zero gravity) and I see stories beginning to emerge… some small, some epic!
It’s worth noting that one significant part of the process is working in groups and managing collaborations. ‘This is hard’, I say, ‘but worth it.’ I’m really impressed by how the groups manage this work and the rest of the session.
We go back to Red Riding Hood. We look at it in reverse, then we chop it up and explore telling the story in a different order. One of the children (Aiofe) suggests this is like Riding Hood telling the story in flashback from the future.
Now it’s time for each group to work on their own modernised version of the story. Who could the characters be? What are they like? Where is the story set? What happens?
Amazing ideas so far…
A Maori Riding Hood, with an all-consuming (Wolf) forest fire.
An inner-city Riding Hood trying to visit her granny in hospital, threatened by a boy called Wolf.
Rival burger restaurants.
Competing code-named spies.
A vengeful gambler…!!!!
All very exciting! The challenge now is to see if we can turn these ideas into our first plays.