FREE RESOURCES: Directing Tips [ Page 7 ]
Ideas & suggestions for producing a creative, fun school play
< Prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Next >

ZOOM: Kids & Schools Get Creative During Coronavirus Crises >

This page (Page #7) has creative ideas for directing a fun, successful play or musical.  Check out these examples used in ArtReach popular titles: The Sword in the Stone.  Don’t forget, a Teachers Guide will come with your School Play Package and contain many other ideas and inspirations!

From The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis' Study Guide for ArtReach's Sword in the Stone

What's the Story?

There is magic all around. At least, that's what the magician Merlin believes, even though his country is in the midst of a terrible war. As the play begins, Merlin devises a way to save his beloved England, that is, as long as everything goes according to his plan for a baby named Arthur.

Several years later, Arthur is a young man, helping his older brother Kai prepare to become a knight by practicing his swordsmanship. Even though Arthur is younger than Kai, he is also bigger and better at just about everything. Kai's not so fond of getting beat up on by his younger brother, so he decides to throw in the towel for the day and head off for swim and then a nap. Arthur, however, has other plans. He wants to keep practicing.

"Magic is in - the earth, wind, water and fire."
Young Arthur learns Arthur battles the dragon
Mount Hood Community College, Gersham OR - ArtReach's Sword in the Stone

As Arthur practices, Merlin appears and tells Arthur that he is a magician. Arthur wants to see some tricks, but Merlin insists that magic isn't quite like he might have imagined. Magic doesn't involve pulling a rabbit out of a hat, but instead is found in everything around us-the earth, wind, water and fire. Arthur is skeptical, but Merlin proves his point in his very first lesson. The young squire will first learn about the wind, as Merlin turns them both into birds and they take to the sky.

As they fly, Arthur is amazed to see the kingdom from so high above. They fly over the forest and his father's land, and then they fly over what appears to be a large group of men. Arthur thinks it looks beautiful, but as they get closer, he realizes that it is a war. Merlin explains that, like many of nature's creatures, men believe that the strongest should rule. However, the strongest are not always the best rulers.

For Merlin's next lesson, the two become fish in a moat outside Arthur's family castle. As Merlin is teaching Arthur how to swim and how to avoid the moat's biggest predator, the pike named Spike, they realize that Arthur's brother Kai has accidentally been transformed as well. The fishy Kai doesn't want to listen and swims too close to danger. Merlin takes the opportunity to teach another lesson, and he leaves the young squire to find a way out of the situation. Arthur uses cunning and bravery to save himself and his brother from Spike, learning that it isn't just strength that a ruler needs, but also intellect.

"Will he be able to get the sword in time?"
Arthur saves brother Kai Merlin in Camelot
Mount Hood Community College, Gersham OR - ArtReach's Sword in the Stone

After their adventure, the two boys return home and find a stranger, the princess Guenever. She has arrived because her father has arranged for her to marry Kai, but that is certainly not what she wants to do. Arthur tries to comfort the young lady, and in doing so, seems to gain a new admirer. Merlin appears with yet another lesson, this time about fire. He teaches Arthur that fire isn't only found in the breath of dragons, but also in the heart of a man in love.

Kai soon arrives with some bad news-he has been called to battle. Arthur must fulfill his duty as Kai's squire and assist his brother in preparing to depart. He helps Kai get into his armor and gather his supplies, but wait-Kai's sword is missing! Desperate to find his brother a sword before he leaves, Arthur comes upon a sword lodged in a stone.  Will he be able to get the sword in time?

Words to the Wise

A villain has evil plots and motives and is the bad guy of a story. Merlin provides Arthur with Excalibur, a legendary sword that only a king can carry. When Arthur pretends to be a knight, he celebrates great triumphs, or great victories and achievements.

"Valor is great courage in the face of danger."
Merlin the Magician Creative Play script for kids
Mount Hood Community College, Gersham OR - ArtReach's Sword in the Stone

Kai needs to learn to joust, a sport in which men attempt to knock each other off their horses using long wooden weapons called lances. Someday Kai will become a knight, a job for men who serve the king as brave soldiers.   Arthur believes his destiny is to become a squire, an attendant or helper to a knight. You might shout "Confound it!" if something didn't go your way, sort of like "Darn it!"

In Arthur's time, a hermit was a person who lived all alone, totally separated from everyone else. Chivalry is a knight's code of conduct and includes qualities like honor, courage, courtesy and readiness to help those in need.   Valor is great courage in the face of danger. A knight is gallant if he shows chivalry, and is brave, grand and heroic.

Something that is majestic shows great beauty and dignity. If something occurs miraculously, then it happened almost by magic as if supernatural powers are involved. Virtues are morally good and desirable qualities.   To proffer is another way to say to offer something. Kai thinks turning into a fish is absurd, or a crazy, wild and unreasonable thing to do. If something is ghastly, it is awful, frightening and terrible.

Sir Ector's castle has a moat around it, or a large ditch filled with water that is a form of protection for the people inside the castle. Spike is a pike, which is a kind of fish with a pointed snout and large teeth.  In Arthur and Guenever's time, a dowry was money or gifts that were given to a man from his bride's father.  It's not very nice to call someone an imbecile, which is like calling them dumb or stupid.

Directing Tips Page 7: < Prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Next >
All Free Resources


Teacher Reviews