One of the awesome new additions to the picture book world has got to be “Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast” by Josh Funk. As I read the book, I kept thinking, “Man! I wish I had thought of this!” I mean, who doesn’t love pancakes and french toast?
In this deliciously good tale, Lady Pancake and Sir French Toast are leftovers who live deep in the fridge. They’re good buddies until their neighbor, Miss Brie, informs them that only one drop of syrup remains. What follows is an epic race through the fridge with both willing to do anything to beat the other and win that last drop of sticky sweet goodness. The tale ends with a satisfying and surprising twist that’s too good to give away — so you’ll have to race out and scoop up a copy. It also has a great takeaway message for all ages. My 18 month old son is also quite fond of the end pages which feature a fold-out fridge full of tasty goodness. Are you feeling hungry just reading about it?
This book is perfect for a guided pantomime that could be used by teachers, librarians, even parents. If you’d like to give it a try in your classroom, library story time, or at home, I’ve got some resources below that might be helpful to you. The first is an Instructions Script. This script could be used prior to any creative dramatic pantomime and lays the groundwork for how such a pantomime works. Because I do not want to give away every scene in the book, I’ve only created a few sections for the Adventure Script — but I hope that this will be enough to give you an idea of how to do it on your own. The most important things to consider as you add to this script and/or make your own is to:
1) Involve all of the senses.
2) Give clear directions that will be easy for participants to follow.
Lastly I have included a Closing Section. It’s important to wrap up with reflection and allow participants to share what they experienced. This part is also just plain fun! You will love hearing the children’s answers and will be amazed at how fully they are able to see and experience the imaginary world that you have helped them create.
I hope this will inspire you to lead children on a fantastic fridgerific adventure! If you do, please let me know how it goes! And now without further ado, the scripts. . .
“Today we are going to go on an adventure using our imaginations. I need everyone to find their own space in the room where you are not touching anyone else. Once you have found your spot, please sit down. This spot will be yours throughout our adventure. I may ask you to run or jump or move in different ways, but you will always do so in this spot. This is your adventure. You are not to interact with anybody else around you. Focus on acting out and experiencing your own adventure and try not to be distracted by those around you. As you go on your adventure, there is to be no talking. If you talk or make sounds, you may disturb someone else’s adventure. That’s why it’s very important to be quiet. Are there any questions before we begin? . . . Good. Then please close your eyes and listen carefully to my instructions.”
“Imagine that you are inside your refrigerator. It’s very dark because the door is closed. It’s also very cold. Brrr!!! All of a sudden the door opens and light floods in. Open your eyes. Ooh! It’s very bright. You blink your eyes a couple of times trying to get adjusted to the bright light. You are now able to see everything around you. There’s a big juicy roast behind you. In front of you is a small plate of green peas. You pick one up. You toss it back and forth in your hands. It feels squishy. You throw it up high in the air and try to catch it but you miss. SPLAT! It explodes right in front of you, covering you in green pea mush. Wipe yourself off.
Now that you are clean, you see some spongy tofu not far away. You climb on top of it. It’s kind of wiggly and jiggly. Once you are on top, you notice that it’s fun to bounce on — like a trampoline. Jump and see how high you can go! You are jumping and jumping until — PWOOSH! One of your feet sinks into the tofu. Pull it out. That’s enough fun with tofu. You roll yourself off of the tofu and back onto the refrigerator shelf.
You look up and see that you are in a Broccoli Forest. See if you can climb to the top of one of the broccoli trees. It’s hard to get to the top because the branches are so high up. You have to hold on tight and shimmy until you get close to some branches. Holding on tight to the trunk, you swing one of your legs up. Then the other. Using your legs, you propel yourself up. From the top of the broccoli tree you see your favorite food, not far away. Yum! You shimmy back down the broccoli tree and head toward your favorite food, but on your way you pass Orange Juice fountain. You’re kind of thirsty so you stop and slurp up as much as you can. It’s so sweet and good you decide to climb in. Ah! It feels so refreshing. Splash around in Orange Juice fountain.
You climb out of the fountain when you notice a strange smell. There’s the culprit — a platter of week-old Brussels sprouts! They are blasting you will terrible stinky fumes! Cover your nose and mouth to block the stench! You are gasping for air. You see a celery ladder and climb up it as fast as you can. The air is fresh up here and you take in some deep, fresh breaths to get rid of the Brussels sprouts fumes.
. . . . (FILL IN WITH MORE ADVENTURES INSPIRED BY THE BOOK). . . .
After racing around the entire fridge and making it from the top to the bottom, you are exhausted. You lie down on the floor, close your eyes and fall asleep.”
“Our adventure has come to an end. You may sit up and open your eyes. Now I would like to hear about your adventure.”
- What was your favorite part of the adventure? Why?
- What was the favorite food that you saw? When you got to it, what did you do with it? (It’s always nice to build in something that isn’t already determined but that allows each student to make a creative choice.)