The theater is an element that can greatly help children’s development as it develops many skills such as memory, organization, discipline, good vocalization, imagination, learning to solve problems that arise at the time, and developing social skills. That is why many schools often ask them to write theatrical scripts and then carry them out. The truth is that it is not as simple a task as it seems. It requires patience and some steps to follow. Here we share seven essential points so you can create a short theatrical script for children.
1. Choose the topic
To start writing it is necessary to know where we want to go; that is, what is wanted to be transmitted through the work. Ask yourself what it is made for. It is just for fun, a school project, specifically a subject you want it to be purely for entertainment or to have a proposal.
In this case, I would recommend that if it is a free theme, talk to the children and ask for their opinions: what topic would they like to know about, since they are the ones who will perform it or enjoy the performance.
They must be given a voice and if this is not possible, you can go to the teachers, ask about the problems that would be good to be addressed as a work or what difficulties the classroom has been experiencing. In this way you will have some certainty that you are addressing the right audience, with the necessary material.
2. Structure of the characters.
Before starting to write it, so that you don’t have to cut sections or characters once you finish the planning stage and avoid problems, establish the number of participants, take into account the exact number of children who will act, this is one of the Characteristics of a most important play.
Many times children tend to miss important days or are doubtful whether they want to participate, what you can do is leave a character who has the same participation as the others, but who is not essential to the story, that is, his absence is not perceived. if he were to be absent, but that he also be noted in case he attends.
Think about the psychology of your characters. Although it will be a short play, the depth of the characters need not diminish. Think of a movie, where one of the characters will act little but strongly, that you could not forget her participation despite the short time she was there. Do the same.
From this moment, think about what wardrobe would look good on him and why. Think of at least one characteristic that distinguishes them from the rest and start writing. It will be easier for you with these data to let the text flow.
3. Write the story.
Many times it is difficult to write the story, no matter how small. I recommend writing it as a story or as simple paragraphs. In the way that you feel that your ideas can be put on paper so that you do not forget any details.
Make the story as such, you can start wherever you want, and then you will join the pieces and you can have the entirety of your story. When doing it, think about the age of the children it is aimed at and the gender from which you will approach it. If it is still difficult for you, make a rundown, that is, how many acts will there be and what important things will happen in each one. What is the general idea of that scene.
4. Setting and scenery.
In order to start planning it as a play, the main thing is that before you write the dialogues, you take into account the materials and budget they have. Whether or not the school will support them. For this type of work I recommend being minimalist. Try not to require a lot of material, since if someone forgets to put an object on the scene or forgets it at home, it could ruin everything, the ideal is to work more on acting than on scenery. Write down everything they will require on a sheet of paper.
5. Structure the dialogues and stage directions.
This part is one of the most important, first of all, part of the creative process consists of thinking about the population you are targeting and the age of your characters; what language children use and on the other hand, think about the psychology of the characters.
Be very careful about giving adult-like dialogue to a 10-year-old character and vice versa. Now yes, go putting it together as a dialogue and what cannot be described in the dialogues, place them as stage directions or as these notes or comments that the actors need to know.
For example, if you require him to move around the space, if you want him to stay still or if it is time to highlight his particular characteristic, moving his hand quickly, playing with his hat, etc.
6. Plan a strong ending.
The ending, believe it or not, is one of the most important elements, as it will give meaning, strength and a moral to your story. It is a moment that although it is not wanted to happen so soon, it is expected by all. In this ending you must accentuate everything you wanted to imply or it is the moment in which some elements of the story will make sense, things that perhaps went unnoticed, will now make perfect sense. I recommend that in an isolated way you write what emotions you intend to provoke in the viewers, what elements you have outlined for this moment and what is the last scene you want them to remember. Invest some time.
7. Give it a title.
Although this could be considered by many as a first step. The title must do justice to the entire story, so until you have all of it you will not be able to create one that meets this requirement. To encompass the story, to enrich it, but not to provide all the information at first sight. Take care that it is not so long, short titles usually have more impact and are more remembered.
We hope that with this small guide of steps to follow you will be able to develop and enhance all your ideas for writing a short theatrical script for children. If it is the case that your little one must do it, follow the same steps, it will surely help him to let his imagination fly, but always with a purpose and organization.
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