FREE RESOURCES: Classroom Activities [ Page 3 ]
Student discussions, exercises, games before and after the play
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What Lessons Does ‘Wizard of Oz’ Teach Us?
Classroom Discussions – Wizard of Oz

General Discussion / Questions

1. Why does Dorothy want to be in some other place than Kansas?

2. Do you ever feel like Dorothy did?

3. Dorothy is taken to Oz by a "twister", what is another name for a twister?

4. Oz is a very beautiful and colorful world, but Dorothy still finds problems there. Do you think there is any place where there are no problems?

5. Do you think the Scarecrow really needed a brain? The Tinman a heart? The Lion his courage?

6. The Wizard, at the end of the play, turns out not to be a Wizard. Though he didn't have the magic powers of a wizard, do you think he helped Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tinman, and the Lion?

7. It is interesting that Dorothy had the power to return home to Kansas anytime she wanted to but she wasn't aware of it. Do you think we often have the power to do what we want but we may not know it?

8. How many books have been written about the Land of Oz? (hundreds) Have you heard of any others besides The (Wonderful) Wizard of Oz?

Let Your Students Roar With Fun!
Great Roles for Kids!  The Wizard of Oz! Fun, Easy Script for Kids to Perform!  The Wizard of Oz! Simplified Version for Kids to Perform!  The Wizard of Oz!
A Roaring Good Time at Lakefront Youth Theatre Experience, New Orleans

Drawing & Art Activities

You saw the Wicked Witch' s castle, what do you think Glinda's castle looks like?

Draw a picture of your favorite part of the show; of your favorite character.

Draw a picture of yourself with characters in the play. Where would you be? What would you be doing?

Famous Wizard of Oz Quotes

Discuss what meaning these sayings have for us in our everyday lives. Can you give an example that illustrates the meaning?

"Never question the truth of what you fail to understand, for the world is full of wonders." -- L. Frank Baum

"..Remember, my friend, a heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others..." – Wizard

"...if I ever go looking for my hearts desire again, I won't look any further than my own backyard... Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with.”
-- Dorothy


Lets Talk about Courage!
The Cowardly Lion in Wizard Of Oz is Perfect for Discussion!

Discussion / Questions: Have a class discussion about the Lion's search for courage. The following questions could be addressed:

Why do you think the Lion felt that he needed courage?

(Lions are known as the King of the Jungle. The Lion felt that he did not have enough courage to live up to the expectations of others)

Talk About the Cowardly Lion in Wizard of Oz
Large Cast School Plays for Children - The Wizard of Oz Dramatic Fun for Kids!  The Wizard of Oz!
Karapiro School, Cambridge, NZ - British School, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

How important is it to live up to the expectations of others, such as parents, friends, and acquaintances? Do you feel that there are times when you do not have enough courage? What do you do in these situations?

What would you like to do? What is the best thing for you to do?

Was the Wizard able to give the Lion courage at the end of the story?

    (No, he discovered that courage must come from within. As various challenging situations arose on the journey, the Lion unconsciously responded courageously because of his desire to help others)

Ask students to reflect upon a time they exhibited courage when they thought that they lacked it. Have students think about ways they can develop courage.

Writing Exercise: Have students write a commercial or jingle that tells/shows the audience: How to Cultivate the Courage that Lies Within Us. Some ideas that can be incorporated are: Believe in yourself. Don't be afraid to say no. Telling the truth is always the best policy. Don't feel that you must follow the crowd in order to survive. It is more important to think for yourself.


Martin Luther King in the Classroom
Prepare for ‘We are the Dream’ with Classroom Activities

Citizenship / Role Playing

This common activity is used in classrooms everywhere – but it's one worth repeating from time to time! The activity helps students understand the concept of "discrimination."

For this activity, divide the class into two or more groups. Some teachers divide students by eye or hair color; some invite students to select and wear badges of different colors (purple, green, and other colors that are not related to skin color); and others isolate students whose first names begin with the letter B (or whichever letter is the most common first letter of students' names in the class).

For a class period or for an entire school day, one group of students (for example, the kids who have blond hair, those wearing orange badges, names start with B, etc.) are favored above all others. Those students receive special treats or special privileges, and they are complimented often. Students who aren't in the "favored" group, on the other hand, are ignored, left out of discussions, and otherwise discriminated against.

 At the end of the period, students discuss their feelings.

• How did it feel to be treated unfairly, to be discriminated against?
• Invite students to talk about times they felt they were judged or treated unfairly.
• How does this experiment relate to the life of Martin Luther King?

Let Your Kids Live the Dream!
I Have a Dream Play for Schools to Perform!
A Student Performs MLK's Dream Speech!
Charteret School, Bloomfield, NJ

Read Aloud

Read aloud one of many Martin Luther King, Jr. biographies to motivate interest in creating a timeline of his life. Your school and local libraries are sure to have several to choose from.

Select a handful of the most important events from the book to start your timeline. Let students fill in other events as they use other books (and online resources) to learn more.

Teachers at the lower grades might focus on books that emphasize a "getting along" theme -- books such as The Land of Many Colors by the Klamath County YMCA (Scholastic, 1993), Together by George Ella Lyon (Orchard Paperbacks), and The Berenstain Bears and the New Neighbor (about the bears' fears when a panda family moves in next door).

Geography

On a U.S. map highlight places of importance in the life of Martin Luther King. Place a pushpin at each location and extend a strand of yarn from the pin to a card at the edge of the map. On the card explain the importance of that place.

History / Role Playing

Make a list of events that are included on your Martin Luther King timeline (e.g., Rosa Parks' bus ride, integrating Little Rock's schools, a lunch counter protest, the "I have a dream” speech).

Let students work in groups to write short plays in which each group acts out one of the events.

Public Speaking

Martin Luther King's "I have a dream" speech is one of the most famous and often quoted speeches of all time.

• Read the speech aloud.
• Invite students to listen to the speech. ( Hear the speech )
• Write on a chart some of the "dreams" Martin Luther King expressed in it.
• Ask students to think about the things they dream for themselves, their families, their country, and the world, and to express those dreams in their own "I have a dream” essays.

Multiculturalism

A simple class or school project can demonstrate the beauty of diversity!

Martin Luther King's dream was to see people of all countries, races, and religions living together in harmony. Gather seeds of different kinds and invite each student to plant a variety of seeds in an egg carton. The seeds of different shapes, sizes, and colors will sprout side by side.

Once the plants are large enough, transplant them into a large pot in the classroom or in a small garden outside. Each class in the school might do the project on its own, culminating in the creation of a beautiful and colorful (and diverse!) school-wide garden.


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