Invite students to sit in a circle facing each other. Join them in this circle. Tell them you’re going to be coming up with a story, but we will add one word at a time as we go from person to person around the circle. Ask them to please start with the writing prompt which is: a traveler.Write down the story as it is created. When it is complete, ask the students to sit down in their normal seats. Stand in front of them and slate (Hello, my name is… Etc) and then act out the story as a monologue for them.
• What would you call that thing I just did there? Does that kind of performance have a name? What does a monologue look like? Can someone define that for me? Let’s watch one! • Project the Much Ado About Nothing clip on the board starting at 4:41. At 5:15 turn down the volume, but let the video clip run. Ask, does anyone know what is going on here? Shakespeare has long monologues to express what certain characters are feeling. It would be awkward to start talking about your deepest feelings in real life. Sometimes these types of monologues can get boring, right? Why? What makes a scene interesting? Interacting with someone? • Start the Sneaky Little Hobbitses clip. Play it until 1:13 then turn down the volume. Start the discussion but let them observe the role switches between Gollum and Sméagol in the background. The scene is more interesting than the first, but why? He’s still talking to himself. Is this a monologue? Is he one character or two? Yes, it is a great monologue. Because he has someone he is talking to. It might be himself, but we need the reactions of others so we’re not just ranting to ourselves and the audience. • Play the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part Two at 1:50. End at 3:35. This is one of the best speeches in this movie. Speeches can be monologues too. When he starts to speak, he makes eye contact with Voldemort. That is important. You might think you’re just monologueing, but you need to see the person or people you are talking to. There is passion behind his speech. We pick good monologues because they have passion- both comedic and dramatic. Was this a monologue? Now, onto one more. • Begin the Tangled Scenes at 7:15. Was this a monologue? Could it be? Why or why not? We said that you needed to interact with people, but we also said a monologue was for one person. Yes, it can be a monologue. It is often hard to find long, usable sections for monologues, so we cut characters! Does that make sense? Sometimes it still doesn’t flow nicely so you have to cut more out. • Pass out the Tangled monologues. Have each student cut out a few words to make it flow nicely. Ask them to gather in pairs and compare their monologue scripts by performing them for each other. Encourage them to make it their own. Let them know that if they need to change the feeling or emotion behind the words, they are allowed to. • Do you know how to start a monologue? Has anyone heard of slating before? I did it at the beginning of our story! You introduce yourself and the basic information about yourself. Slate again for them and give them five minutes to figure it out for themselves. Invite them up to slate one at a time. • Before they leave, sign off on their monologue choices for clean language and content, then assign them to memorize half of their monologue by next class.