Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock

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Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock

An Easy-to-Use Language Arts Play for Elementary School

Grades 1-4
25 minutes
$39.95
(2 or more Book/CD sets @ $30 each)

In Stock.

Includes script, teacher's guide, and audio CD. The CD has all the songs recorded twice: first with singing, so you and your students can learn the songs, and then without voices so your students can perform without us singing along.

And if you ever have any trouble or questions, you can contact us at any time for help.

 

Order Now!

For individual teachers/classes:
Book/CD - $39.95 for 1, $30/ea for 2+
Hint: order 1 for each teacher. (details)

For 3+ teachers or whole schools:
Site License - $75.00
Comes with 3 copies of book/CD plus unlimited photocopying rights (details)
School/site name:

Musical extras:
Piano/Guitar Score - $9.95 (details)
Extra/Replacement CD - $9.95

Or order by phone, fax or PO

This 25-minute musical play can be done as a complete play, skits, reader's theater, or you can just sing songs. No music or drama experience needed!

Anansi has always been one of our favorite and best-selling shows. Based on a West African tale, it's the story of a very tricky spider who discovers a magic rock that he uses to steal food from all the jungle inhabitants. The last laugh is on Anansi, of course, but not before everyone has a chance to sing some fun songs about yams, dancing mangos, and Anansi's mischief.

Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock is a great complement to your curriculum resources in elementary school language arts. It can be used as part of a Folk Tale or Trickster component of the curriculum, and it also lends itself naturally to African studies and multicultural studies. And, like all of our plays, this show can be used to improve reading, vocabulary, reading comprehension, performance and music skills, class camaraderie and teamwork, and numerous social skills (read about it!) -- all while enabling students to be part of a truly fun and creative experience they will never forget!

Author: Ron Fink (Composer) and John Heath (Book and Lyrics)
ISBN: 978-1-886588-02-8
© 1995, 2002 Bad Wolf Press, LLC

"I used grades K, 1, and 2 (about 40 students in all.) They loved the music. Everyone came that day and night (we did two performances) expecting to see your average 'cute' early primary show. Instead they saw 'the best show ever.' I heard that over and over. The next day students began asking when our next show was and what grades would be doing it. That was wonderful. Your shows have become a tradition at our school."

---Judy Colligan, Teacher (Music), St. Joseph Catholic School, Farmington, MO

"The CD was fantastic---so easy to learn from and then perform with! And the teacher guide really helped with play production, costumes, and sets. The children gained immensely in self-confidence, poise, and self-awareness. It was truly remarkable. Parents were so impressed at the level of quality we achieved in the performance. Some children said that doing the play was the highlight of their school year!"

---Linda Turnbull, Teacher, (K-2nd grades), Ho'ala School, Wahiawa, HI

"Quick and easy. The kids loved the lyrics and always asked to practice. We only performed for ourselves but their sense of accomplishment was huge. Lots of 'back-patting' and complements when we swaped roles. Great self esteem building for the kids and tear-jerking for the teacher (me!) No fuss, no stress."

---Jenni Clark, Teacher (3rd grade) Eufaula Elementary, Eufaula, AL

"The kids loved it! I used two classes and everyone had a part. It was so easy to organize. The kids had so much fun. All the students feel so successful when everyone is clapping for them. My second graders were exposed to a variety of vocabulary that they may not otherwise have been interested in."

---Buffy Esquibel, Teacher (2nd grade), Preston School, Rialto, CA

"I liked the catchy tunes, easy to learn songs, and the literature-based cross-curricular connections. The show involved everyone, form the shy one to the star. We're still singing those tunes."

---Jane Bishop, Teacher, (1st-2nd grades), Broadwater School, Helena, MT

"It was a unique experience that cleverly wove the messages and concepts through word and song. You would have been so proud of our children as they worked with me during recess to develop the unique choreography that added to the splendor of your creation. Children realized it was OK to let their inhibitions go. Many discovered a hidden talent for song, acting and dance. Everyone had so much fun working in the multilevel experience. We all laughed a great deal!"

---Jane Aikens, Teacher, (5th-8th grade), St. Maria Goretti School, Schiller Park, IL

"The songs were catchy and the students enjoyed singing them all the time. Whenever someone would say, 'it's hot outside,' the students would burst into song: 'It's so hot, it's so hot, hot in the jungle in July.' We LOVED the songs, the story, the whole production! We were learning about one country per continent and happen to pick Ghana. Anansi tales originated there and we were also doing just so stories. The play worked perfectly! I also appreciated the teacher's addition to the play. Very informative for experienced and new teachers."

---Denisia Wash, Teacher (1st grade), Washington School, WA

"We only need to hear a few bars of a tune we loved from long ago and the memories come flooding back. I only have to sing the word ANANSI to the year 6 children in our school and they remember a whole host of information about the play and the Africa topic we were covering four years ago. Bad Wolf Press has livened up my curriculum, made music lessons fun and sown the seeds for stars of the stage in the future (so many have got the bug!)."

---Gillian Robinson, Teacher (year 2 UK, age 6-7), Lower Darwen Primary School, UK

"My class's final performance of Anansi is tonight. They are dynamite! With my experience, their talent, and a fantastic musical to do the whole show was really brought to life!...Thank you so much and keep writing because what you've done is exactly what I've been looking for."

---Justin Hoffman, Teacher (2nd grade), Wagon Wheel Elementary, Trabuco Canyon, CA

"This happens to be one of my favorite storybooks and it came to life beautifully in the genius songwriting and play formatting. The kids had fun and learned some great lessons too."

---Kim Chase, Volunteer Parent/Teacher (2nd/3rd grade) Concord School, Oak Grove, OR

"This was a GREAT play for K-3 to perform because it was all song...few lines to learn!"

---George Rhodes, Teacher (2nd/3rd) Sedgewick School, Blue Hill, ME

"It was adorable! The children really enjoyed performing the play for the entire school."

---Jackie Brondstater, Teacher (2nd grade), Powhatan School, Boyce, VA

 

Casting

Flexible casting from 11-40 students.
Use as many lions, rhinos, monkeys etc. as desired.
One student can easily play several roles if needed.
Note that all roles can be played by either boys or girls;
see our comments on page 31 of the Teacher's Guide.

Script

This is the first one-third of the script:

CHARACTERS:

Anansi
Zebras
Lions
Rhinos
Monkeys
Elephants
Little Bush Deer
Storytellers
Chorus (comprised of all animals except Anansi)

All the action of the play takes place in a jungle---a backdrop with jungle
plants and animals can be used (see "Set and Staging" in the Teacher's
Guide). There is a large "rock" in the middle of the stage. On the backdrop
behind the stage there is a sign:

Warning! Magic Rock! If ANYBODY says
"Isn't this a strange moss-covered
rock" they will fall asleep for exactly one hour.

Song 1 - Listen now!

ENTIRE CAST (sings as they march or dance up to stage):
It’s so hot
It’s so hot
Hot in the jungle in July

It’s so hot
It’s so hot
It’s so hot under African skies.
The monkeys are sweating

MONKEYS: It’s so hot!

The rhinos are fretting

RHINOS: It’s so hot!

The lions are betting it’s hundred degrees.
The monkeys are sweating

MONKEYS: It’s so hot!

The rhinos are fretting

RHINOS: It’s so hot!

Gazelles are gazetting there under the trees.

It’s so hot
It’s so hot
Hot in the jungle in July
It’s so hot
It’s so hot
It’s so hot under African skies.
(soft)
It’s so hot under African skies.
(loud)
It’s so hot under African skies.

(Entire CAST freezes, looking at audience, with the last note of the song.
It is important that the audience knows the song is over and can now
applaud. See "Turning on the Applause Sign" in the Teacher’s Guide.)

STORYTELLER (spoken): Long ago, on a very hot summer day, Anansi
the Spider was crawling through the jungle when he spotted something
very strange.

(ANANSI enters as STORYTELLER talks. ANANSI looks shocked
when he notices the rock.)

Song 2 - Listen now!

ANANSI:
I know every tree in the jungle
I know each lion by its roar
I know every nook of the jungle
But I’ve never seen this before.

(ANANSI points directly at the rock on the word "this")

I know every inch of the jungle
So that’s why this is such a shock
This is quite a change
This is very strange
Isn’t this a strange moss-covered rock!

(ANANSI falls down, instantly asleep)

CHORUS:
Down down down down
Down fell Anansi
Down he fell in sleep,
Down down down down
Down fell Anansi
Slumbering so deep.

Down down down down
Down fell Anansi
One full hour went by,
He woke up some
His head was numb
And he was wondering why
He was wondering why.

ANANSI:
I wonder, I wonder what’s happening to me
I was just taking a short walk
This is quite a change
This is very strange
Isn’t this a strange moss-covered rock!

(ANANSI crashes down again in slumber)

CHORUS:
Down down down down
Down fell Anansi
Down he fell once more,
Down down down down
Down fell Anansi
Sleeping like before.

Down down down down
Down fell Anansi
One full hour went by,
He woke up some
His head was numb
And he was wondering why
He was wondering why.

(As ANANSI wakes up, ZEBRAS dance in)

Song 3

ZEBRAS:
We are wise old Zebras
We’ve got wise old zebra stripes
You should listen to us
And take our wise advice.

CHORUS: Listen to them, listen to them!

We are wise old Zebras
We know wise old zebra stuff
If you listen to us
Then you’ll be wise enough.

It’s a magic rock, magic rock
We know it sounds absurd
CHORUS: Sounds absurd
Magical rock, watch your talk
Don’t say
CHORUS: Don’t say
Don’t say
CHORUS: Don’t say
Don’t say

ZEBRAS and CHORUS:
Don’t say those magical words!

ANANSI: You mean the words, "Isn’t this a strange moss-covered…?"

ZEBRAS (interrupting): SHHHHHH!

We are wise old Zebras
We’ve got wise old zebra stripes
You should listen to us
And take our wise advice.

CHORUS: Listen to them, listen to them!

It’s a magic rock, magic rock
We know it sounds absurd
CHORUS: Sounds absurd
Magical rock, watch your talk
Don’t say
CHORUS: Don’t say
Don’t say
CHORUS: Don’t say
Don’t say

ZEBRAS and CHORUS:
Don’t say those magical words!

(ZEBRAS dance off)

STORYTELLER (spoken): Anansi was delighted to learn of the magic
rock, and he came up with a clever trick. You see, Anansi loved the food
of the jungle, but he did not want to do any work to get it. He’d rather take
somebody else’s, so he went to the home of the Lions.

ANANSI: Good afternoon, Lions. What are you doing on this hot day?

Song 4 - Listen now!

LIONS:
We like the yams
We like the yams
That’s all we can say
We work so hard
Out in our backyard
Digging yams all day.

We like to roar
We like to stretch
We like leg of lamb
We like the sun
We like to have fun
But we’d rather have a yam.

Anansi the Spider
Your tricks are well-known
You’d rather steal our yams
than find some on your own.

We like the yams
We like the yams
That’s all we can say
We work so hard
Out in our backyard
Digging yams all day.

(spoken): This is our yam-digging music! Oh we like this!

(LIONS dig and dance as the CHORUS sings)

CHORUS:
They like the yams
They like the yams
That’s all they can say
They work so hard
Out in their backyard
Digging yams all day.

Anansi the Spider
Your tricks are well-known
You’d rather steal their yams than find some on your own.

LIONS:
We like the yams
We like the yams
That’s all we can say
We work so hard
Out in our backyard
Digging yams all day.

LIONS and CHORUS:
We work so hard
Out in our backyard . . .

LIONS:
. . . digging yams all day.

(This concludes the first one-third of the script.)

Sample Songs

Click on the song name to hear samples. Please note that internet song samples have low fidelity and rest assured that the CDs we sell sound much better! (This player requires Flash. If you have any trouble hearing the samples, just contact us for help.)


Full Song List

1. "It’s So Hot"
2. "Down, Down"
3. "We Are Wise Old Zebras"
4. "We Like the Yams"
5. "Down, Down"
6. "Tango with a Mango"
7. "Down, Down"
8. "What’s That Smell?"
9. "Stretch Out My Trunk"
10. "Down, Down"
11. "Where’s Our Yams?"
12. "We See the Trees"
13. "It’s So Hot"

Common Core and Other National Standards

Language Arts

  • Common Core Reading Standards for Literature: K, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th
  • Common Core Reading Standards: Foundational Skills:
    • K and 1st: Phonological Awareness, Phonics and Word Recognition
    • 2nd: Phonics and Word Recognition
    • 3rd, 4th, 5th: Phonics and Word Recognition, Fluency
  • Common Core Speaking and Listening Standards: Comprehension and Collaboration - K, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th
  • Common Core Language Standards: Vocabulary Acquisition and Use - K, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th
  • Common Core Standard 10: Range, Quality & Complexity: Range of Text Types for K-5th

History/Social Studies

Fine Arts

  • National Music Standards 1, 2, 6, 7, and 8 for K-4th
  • National Theater Standards 2, 3, 6, 7, and 8 for K-4th
  • National Dance Standards 1 and 2 for K-4th

Vocabulary

fretting
degrees
gazelles
nook
slumbering
numb
absurd
yam
stroll
mango
polka
jig
appeal
woe
mongoose
shrewd
backdrop
shocked
instantly
pantomime
parenthesis
intentionally

Performance Photos

Performance Photos from Bad Wolf Press