In our imagined world, Year 3 and 4 were commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Society to make Shakespeare more exciting for children. We set ourselves the task of making our own company called, ‘Shakespeare’s Discovery Theatre 4 Kids.’
We decided to choose ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ as we thought it was the most accessible play for lower Key Stage 2. For the first half term, we had drama workshops and dived into the play by becoming the characters and experiencing their dilemmas.
As experts of Shakespeare, we needed to research his life and achievements, discover who the rulers were of the day and find out about his most famous theatre – The Globe. We have incorporated debate into our learning which has sometimes turned into very noisy affairs! The children have written balanced arguments about whether men or women are more powerful in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.
We have also studied Shakespeare’s sonnets and realised that he was very talented! We made up our own ‘quasi’ sonnets which had 6 lines. The first quatrain had the rhyming pattern ABAB and then we finished with a rhyming couplet. It was hard to do the iambic pentameter that is: de dum, de dum, de dum, de dum, de dum!
Our child-friendly, adapted and abridged performance is on Friday 8th July and will be set in the middle of a ‘real’ forest. We have everything crossed for a dry evening! We will send another report after the show with some photographs of the big event.