Midsummer madness

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Enjoy singing, music, dance and drama combined in these activities to celebrate Midsummer’s Day, 24 June.

Stonehenge

Midsummer magic

What you need: Access to internet

Group sizes:
  • Whole class to watch film
  • Small groups to dance and act out story.

Areas of learning:
PD: Experiments with different ways of moving.
CL: Speaking – Extends vocabulary, especially by grouping and naming, exploring the meaning and sounds of new words. Children use language to imagine and recreate roles and experiences in play situations.

Starters

  1. Talk about Midsummer’s day and some of the traditions linked with this time of year. It is especially important in Scandinavian countries where it is the most important holiday after Christmas. Midsummer Eve is associated with magical creatures such as dragons, giants, unicorns, witches and fairies. Bonfires are lit to celebrate the sun as the days start to get shorter. Wheels are set alight and rolled down hills on fire.
  2. Try this drama game using magical creatures. Ask children to think of different ways these creatures would look and move. Let them experiment and choose how to demonstrate the different creatures. Can they stomp around and roar like dragons? Can they fly on tiptoe like fairies? Play a ‘Beans’ style game shouting out the names. When you shout out bonfire all the children must come together and kneel or stand on the floor with their hands waving like flames in the air.
  3. Visit the CBeebies website and watch a short animated version of Midsummer’s Night Dream. Talk about the characters and the story. Where and when was it set?

Main

Talk about the names of the magical characters in the play – Oberon, Titania, Puck, Peasblossom, Cobweb, Moth and Mustardseed. Can the children make up some new fairy names using flowers, herbs and vegetables, such as Courgetteseed or Rosepetal?

Explain that the children are going to work in groups of four, taking on the roles of four new fairies and try this simple circle dance to the tune of ‘Ring a ring of roses’.
Ring a ring of fairies,
A circle round the berries,
Singing and dancing,
All night long.
Ring a ring of witches,
A circle round the ditches,
Singing and dancing,
All night long.
Ring a ring of bluebells,
Casting lots of love spells,
Singing and dancing,
All night long.

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