Ballinteer Educate Together – 5th Class – Session 3 – Friday 25th January 2019 Teacher: Lucy Abraham Artist: Michelle Read – Playwriting

We looked back at the Red Riding Hood stories from the perspectives of Red Riding Hood and the Wolf. In our groups we were planning a scene to write using the original story as a guide. We also thought more about the characteristics of each character in the story and began to talk about how we can use the structure of Red Riding Hood and the characters to make new stories or to modernise the story.

To help us with this Michelle had us look at some headlines and in one whole group we plotted a story under the headline of ‘Government Minister Needs More Money for Children’s Hospital’. Red Riding Hood’s mother became the Minister and Red Riding Hood was the Junior Minister sent to the EU Banker, adapted from the role of Granny, to get more money. On the way the Junior Minister came across someone pretending to be a philanthropic Billionaire interested in investing in the Children’s Hospital, this character was modelled on the Wolf. We came up with a variety of possible outcomes, some positive and some that weren’t ideal. We discussed how playwrights can write an unexpected or shocking ending in order to inspire action in the audience.

In our groups we have chosen another headline to use in order to modernise Red Riding Hood and we will write the script together.

I thought it was really nice that we can change up the story with your own ideas. Amber

I liked how we could turn the headlines into stories and still use the Red Riding Hood characters. Ella

Working with Michelle made me enjoy writing scripts and gives me more confidence to do it. Kian

I thought it was interesting to see how everybody has different ideas of how to use the characters for the same story. Erica

I like being able to choose what the characters say. Elettra

I like how everyone has a perspective on the character. Ava

I like learning lots of versions of the story and not just one. Georgia

I like seeing how even one story can have different endings. Kuba

Working with Michelle has opened a new world of play writing to me. I like how you can have one story but you can see many different perspectives from different characters. Liam

I liked turning Red Riding Hood and the Wolf and the other characters into other characters for the headlines. Sadhbh

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Lucy had  mentioned to me before we started that the class were really interested in current affairs, so that made me think of making up some headlines linked to things that do crop up in the news regularly. We had a look at these headlines in terms of who Riding Hood and the Wolf became in a new reality. We also looked at the things the main characters want. WANTS, DESIRES and NEEDS generally drive characters to take action in drama.

We discussed that the Wolf wants (and needs) food in the original version – he is hungry, maybe even starving, but he also seems greedy, because he’s not satisfied with Riding Hood’s basket of food, or even just eating Riding Hood. He wants to eat granny too!

We thought about how that might translate into a modern adaptation – that the wolf character might want – MONEY, or FAME, or SOMEONE’S HOUSE, or TO WIN! And how she or he are both hungry and greedy for those things.

I also told the children that, like with our Skellig adaptation, they are writing for theatre, so they are planning a play for five characters. Which is quite different from planning a book or a film story. We will need to keep this in mind.

Each group then picked a headline they liked, and began to brainstorm who the characters would be and how the story might work. And we’ll do some more on that next week.


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