It was a case of Double Double, toil and trouble for our Year 4 pupils this week.
This term in English our Year 4s are enjoying an ‘active storytelling’ approach to Shakespeare’s Macbeth.
Taking the form of three workshops, the children explore the plot and its implications, transforming the play into a ‘whodunnit’ extravaganza. The tale begins with a build-up of the setting of the heath, layering sound effects with lines from the witches’ speech to Macbeth and Banquo on their approach to High Dunsinane Castle. By reading out lines in small groups and by acting key scenes such as Macbeth’s coronation banquet, the children begin to realise what is unfolding, what might happen next, and why. Through careful discussion, pupils tease out the likely scenarios as the class works its way towards the dramatic showdown on High Dunsinane Hill. Some children become so engrossed that they retain their character labels and even the lines of their speech, bringing these back to the next session a week later! Afterwards, they turn part of the play into an exciting written narrative and the standard of their writing is often very high!