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Perseverance - The Running Shoes - A Play

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Perseverance - The Running Shoes - A Play
« on: February 05, 2013, 10:31:15 AM »
This story, like the one of the Little Pig who wanted to fly, teaches our children about the value of perseverance. Pauline had a goal – to win the race so that she could keep the running shoes Mr Mokono lent her.

The script could be used by a slightly older group – once again, an effort has been made to introduce as many parts as
possible so that everyone gets a turn to be included.


Grandpa   He is old, wise and a bit slow in movement.  He is a lovable character.
Pauline   A curious and likeable girl. You would not necessarily see her as a winner but you are not surprised when she wins.
Mr. Mokono    A father-figure with a good heart.
Narrators           The narrators are the storytellers. They need to be unique – taking their cues from the personality of the child. The more exciting and yet different from each other the better.
Announcers   These are your fast-talkers.  It is as though they compete to speak the fastest.
Athletes   These ones show off with their bodies. They warm-up in such a manner that they can draw attention.

The play starts with athletes warming up for a race. They are stretching, dashing about, focusing, everyone unique  in their own way but they are all determined to win. Pauline, Grandpa and Mr. Mokono  deliver their dialogue as guided by the narrators. They are in a different space from the athletes.

Narrator 1   It all started three months ago when Pauline visited Mr. Mokono’s shoe-store.
Narrator 2   You see, she had many pictures of runners in her bedroom and she looked at them every morning. She really, really wanted to be a runner.
Narrator 1   One Saturday morning Grandpa asked Pauline Grandpa   “Do you want to come to town with me?” Pauline   “Yes Grandpa”
Narrator 2   She enjoyed going to town with Grandpa.
Narrator 3   Mr. Mokono’s shop smelled different from other shops. Pauline liked the mixed smells of leather, shoe polish and glue.
Narrator 4   There were men’s shoes, women’s shoes, children’s shoes, old shoes and new shoes.
Narrator 3         (Confiding in the audience) And then ... and then Pauline saw a pair of running shoes on the counter.  She moved closer ..., she looked at them ..., she looked at her bare feet ..., she looked at them again
...Then she thought
Pauline   These are the right size ... they can fit me PERFECTLY ... With that thick springy sole I can run anywhere ...  I wish I could have them!!!!
Narrator 4   When it was Grandpa’s turn to be served Pauline pointed at the running shoes.
Mr. Mokono    Do you want to hear a secret? These running shoes belonged to a great runner from long ago. Her name was Zola Budd.
Pauline   Wow! Wow! I can’t believe this. My mother told me about her. Are you sure Mr. Mokono?
Mr. Mokono    One hundred percent.  She bought them and thought she would like them.  But then she decided to carry on running with no shoes. That’s why I have them.  But I believe they are magic and they are just waiting for the right person.
Narrator 5   (Aside) Pauline could not take her eyes off the running shoes. She asked Grandpa to buy them for her, but Grandpa told her he did not have enough money to buy them.  She was disappointed.
Mr. Mokono    Do you want them? (She nods) Are you sure? (She nods vigorously, almost in tears). Well then I have a plan. You may borrow them and if you win a race at the school sports day, you can keep them.

The next two narrators who have been with  the athletes warming up on stage are jogging as they take us through the story

Narrator 6   That evening – she ran to the top of the hill to show her granny
Narrator 7   The next day she ran with the dog to the shop
Narrator 6   At sunset she ran with her brother to fetch her mother from the bus stop
Narrator 7   Each time she ran, she went a little further – and a little faster Narrator 6   At lunch time at school she ran ten times round the playground Narrator 7   After school she jogged with the young aunts of her street Narrator 6   The next morning she jogged with the soccer team
Narrator 7   Every day she was getting stronger and stronger
Narrator 6   She did not stop trying. She was getting faster and faster
Narrator 7   The athletics teacher noticed Pauline’s hard work.  He encouraged her and helped her.  She was ready for the race.

The athletes line up and there is a lot of excitement  among the spectators.

Announcer 1   Ladies and gentlemen, our next race is the long-awaited three kilometre race for girls. May the best runner win.

Announcer 2   Okay girls you may line-up. On your maraaaarks! Readyyyyyyyyyyy!

Bang goes the gun – which could be a clap of wooden planks.The girls start running. They then disappear off-stage.

Announcer 1   (As the runners come past) It’s neck and neck between the favourites in this race. Yang and Zaza are on each other’s heels with Pauline a few metres behind them. Well! There is still a long way to go.
Announcer 3   (As the runners go through the audience and run past the stage) We are half way through the race and the positions have changed. Zaza is way ahead of the pack.
Announcer 4   A surprise runner is now holding second position. I don’t know where Yang is. Has she dropped out? And Pauline is still holding on to her third position. Well-well-well ...

The runners go past the front of the audience onto the stage. They disappear

Announcer 2   What’s going on? What on earth is going on here?  Zaza has dropped to third position – she is chasing Pauline who is now in position 2.
Announcer 5   Yang is struggling in position 1 – Oh no! Yang has dropped.  She has got cramps. Pauline has taken over.  Pauline, Pauline, 50 metres ... Zaza is chasing ... 10 Metres ... P A U L I NE ... Ladies and
gentlemen ... boys and girls ...We have a winner! Pauline has WON!!!!

Pauline appears, now walking. She is exhausted.   She waves to the audience.

Mr. Mokono    Well done Pauline. I am proud of you.You worked hard.You did not give up.You made those shoes work.
Pauline          Thank you for giving me a chance Mr. Mokono
Mr. Mokono    But you practised and practised.You didn’t give up. In the end it wasn’t the shoes that were magic – you ran like magic!

The cast applaud  Pauline. She bows in appreciation. Someone  could even bring her a bunch of flowers.

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