Pre-K Play: Final Draft

The final draft of our play was based on the storybook Snowmen at Night, which the children had read earlier this year. However, in order to put our own spin on this tale, we decided to tell a story that would show what toys do at night while we sleep. The students created a story with a beginning, middle, and end while also creating a problem that needed to be solved.

Some children worked on writing the dialogue for their characters, while others help write the plot of the story. Some students decided that they felt more comfortable just acting in the play and not having lines. Each child was thoughtful about what they wanted their characters to look like and how they would act in each scene.

It was a long journey from our first script-writing session, but they crafted a wonderfully creative story and we could not be more excited to share it with everyone at our up-coming movie premiere!

Enjoy!

 

What Do Toys Do at Night?

 

The Toys

A.H. – a fairy

A.R. – a ballerina

A.J. – a green robot

D.K. – Princess Aurora

E.S. – Sven

H.P. – Spiderman

J.W. – Ben Kenobi

J.J. – Iron Man

O.M. – a football player

O.A. – a bear

S.M. – a vampire squid

S.B. – a fairy mermaid

T.O. – a blue robot

 

The little girl

S.C. – Elsa

 

A little girl, named Elsa, is playing in her room. The toys are all silent and not moving. Elsa stretches. She says, “I’ll put these toys away in the morning.”
Elsa goes to sleep. Then the toys start to wake and decide to play hide seek.

The bear is counting while everyone else hides. Then Sven, Aurora, the fairy, the robot, and Spiderman go to hide in the toy box, but they get stuck inside.

The bear starts to look for his friends. He finds, the vampire squid, the football player, the dancer, fairy mermaid, Ben Kenobi and the blue robot.
The bear notices there are a lot of friends that are missing.
“There are not as many friends as I used to see.”
Some of the toys say, “Oh, no! I’m worried for my friends”
Ben Kenobi uses his binoculars to look around.
The bear says, “Wait a minute, I see foot prints. There are two kinds of foot prints. One leads up to the roof, and one leads to the wall.”
The dancer stands on her tippy-toes to look on the shelf and says, “All I see is a box”.

Elsa wakes up and the toys freeze. Elsa goes to get a drink of water and goes back to bed.

Meanwhile in the toy box, Sven tries to use his antlers to open the box but it does open. Aurora says, “I have an idea, let’s all work together to open the lid.”
Then all the toys work together to push the lid open but it doesn’t budge.
“It’s too heavy” says Iron Man.
Spiderman says “It’s locked”.
The fairy says, “It’s stuck”.
Iron Man tries to laser a circle to try to get out of the toy box. Spiderman tries to use his webs to open the box. The fairy tries to fly out, but the lid is too heavy.
The robot says “I’ll make a key”.
The robot tries to use the key from the inside but it doesn’t work. The lid doesn’t budge.
“Sven says the keys is too little.” says Spiderman

The fairy mermaid uses her wand to make a map of the bedroom. The toys looks all around the room and then mark off on the map, the places they have looked.

“The first set of footprint don’t lead anywhere, they just walk around in a circle.” says Ben.
“The second set of footprints that lead to the roof, disappear.” says the football player.
The football player puts on his secret spy helmet with x-ray vision that helps him to see into things. He looks around the room.
“I found them.”
All the toys say, “Where?” and the football player says
“They are up on the shelf in the toy box.”
The vampire squid says, “I see the key under the bed.”
He tries to go under the bed to get the key but he gets stuck in gum.
“Oh no, I got stuck in gum”.
So the toys send the ballerina, Ben, and the fairy mermaid on a rescue mission to save the vampire squid. They work together and pull on the vampire squid really hard and he breaks free from the gum.
Now that they have the key, Ben goes to the fire engine to borrow the ladder.
“Come one guys, let’s use the ladder to get up on the shelf.”

Once they all get up on the shelf, they use the key to open the box.
The box opens, “Thank you! Yay!” say the toys
All the toys cheer!
Just then, the toys realize that it’s almost morning and Elsa is waking up. The toys all jump down from the shelf and return to their regular positions on the floor.
Elsa wakes up and says, “Wow, what a dream!”

 

 

Post-Filming

050714_4109As most of you know, we filmed our movie on Wednesday.  Our Cinematographer, Coty Giannelli, arrived right on time and ready to roll. The costumes had their last minute fixes and we were off!  We ran through the scenes, and ran through the scenes, and ran through the scenes again.  Almost all of the costumes stayed together, with only a couple of heads rolling away.

Though a bit taken aback that the process lasted so long, the children were surprisingly patient and resilient.  Two and one half hours and one newly altered squid head later….we finally said, “Cut!”

050714_4112Of course, we didn’t make the children spend the entire two hours filming.  Our original plan had been to spend some time outside in between scenes.  The weather simply didn’t get the memo.  As we switched between scenes, small groups went around the corner to read in the library.  Sometimes I read to them, sometimes they read to each other.  Generally, we relaxed between takes.

When we asked the children what the most challenging parts of movie making were, they offered many suggestions.

  1. Making your costume
  2. To decide what character you want to be
  3. You can’t take a drink when you are filming
  4. Keeping your costume from getting broken
  5. It takes a long time
  6. Remembering your lines

050714_4110Although none of the children mentioned it, we’d like to add one more challenging aspect:

Staying frozen when you are a four or five-year-old actor who is supposed to be an inanimate object

….but maybe that goes without saying.

 

We are looking forward to the final cut from Coty within the next few weeks.  Your invitations to the PKN Movie Premiere Night were sent home in your child’s backpack last Friday.  It will be held on May 29th in the evening.

 

 

 

 

 

What’s in a name?

Our play officially has a name! After some brainstorming, and careful consideration, the students unanimously voted for…”What do toys do at night?”. Now that we have settled on a name, it’s time to get working on our costumes and set. The fun is just beginning!

 

P1120811