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Which Show is Right for My Students?
Educator Guide
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  • Info
  • Performance Description
  • Plot Synopsis
  • Content Advisories
  • Student Matinee Schedule
  • 2018 – 2019 Ticket Prices
  • Curriculum Connections
  • Perfect for Preschoolers
  • Attendance Calculator

Based on the book by Djemma Bider
Adapted for the stage by Rosanna Staffa
Music by Victor Zupanc
Directed by Peter C. Brosius
For the littlest theatregoers

A Children’s Theatre Company Original Production


Meet Bernice the butterfly, who discovers a vacant house one day and makes it perfect just for her. Before long, a menagerie of creatures begin moving in one by one. While it’s difficult for Bernice, she accommodates…until…she can “bear” no more. Together they discover when you open your heart, there’s always room for more. The audience joins this newfound family of delightful critters to bring it all to life. Get ready for a pillow fight, bubble bath, and dance party as you help them create a very special version of Home, Sweet Home.

Performance Description

A performance perfect for preschoolers! CTC’s preschool shows are specifically designed to be developmentally appropriate for our youngest audience members. When you arrive, you and your students can ease into the role of audience by playing in our interactive lobby which opens 45 minutes before the show. Get comfortable by taking off your shoes and slipping into our puppet socks, interact with activities connected to the show or relax with a book in our reading corner. Because we know that a dark theatre can be a little intimidating, our staff will start the show by gathering the audience together in the lobby and then entering the theatre as a group. Don’t worry about getting the best seats – they are all great! Our intimate 115 seat house has low benches up front built just for tiny bodies, and larger benches in the back for the adults. The Biggest Little House in the Forest is a one-woman show featuring music and puppets. At 35 minutes long it is perfectly tuned to engage early learners and we welcome all the wiggles, giggles, and even comments it inspires. This production was created by CTC’s new play development lab as a part of our Early Childhood Initiative. Because we want educators to feel secure letting their little ones explore and interact, our Preschool Show allows 1 adult per every 2 students (plus any special education support staff).

This production takes place on our Cargill Stage and seats up to 115 people per performance.

Approximate run time: 35 minutes without an intermission

Run time and other details are subject to change during rehearsal process.

Plot Synopsis
Caution: This is a complete synopsis of the play, so it is full of spoilers


It is a beautiful day in the forest when Bernice the butterfly finds a little house. She learns that no one lives there. She decides to clean it up and make it her home. Millie the mouse stumbles upon the house, and Bernice invites her to live in the house, too. Millie has seeds and they decide to plant a garden together. Vegetables begin to grow and they begin to eat. Then Fred the frog hops along, a bit nervous to join the fun. The narrator encourages him to ring the doorbell of the little house. Bernice and Millie invite him to join them in the house. All three live together! At bedtime, Millie is hesitant. The narrator tucks them all into bed but Millie decides to start a pillow fight. Feathers fly everywhere! The narrator sings them a song to help them get to sleep.

The next morning, Fred makes pancakes for breakfast. His mixing becomes a little overzealous and flour goes flying into the narrator’s face. Just then, Rudy the rooster joins them. They invite her to live with them, too. At bath time, they all jump into the bathtub. They add bubble bath and bubbles fly over the audience.

They hear a cry for help from Richie the rabbit. A fox is chasing him! They let him into the house to escape the fox and invite him to live with them, too. It begins to rain and they suddenly hear a big growl at the door. They are afraid but Bernice flies over to the door and slowly opens it. It is Bartholomew the bear, who is wet and cold from the storm. He asks to come inside and warm himself by the fire. Bernice says “no,” because there is no room and Bartholomew is sad. Where will he go? He notices the chimney looks warm and would be just the right size for a bear seat. He climbs up to the roof of the house, sits near the chimney and starts to warm up. We hear a crack. The animals run outside to see what the noise is and the house collapses underneath the weight of the bear. The rain stops and they gather to look at what is left of the little house. They feel sad about their house and Bartholomew apologizes. Everyone forgives him and together they brainstorm how to rebuild the house. They all work together to rebuild the house and the noises of the construction become a song. They complete the house and it is bigger and more beautiful than ever. They are so happy that they throw a party! The audience is invited to join in the dance party.

Content Advisories (subject to change as the production goes into rehearsal):

Language: 0 out of 5 stars

Themes and Situations: 1 out of 5 stars
Bartholomew the bear cannot find a place to live.

Violence & Scariness: 0 out of 5 stars

Sensory Advisories: 1 out of 5 stars
Bubbles are blown into the audience. Feathers fly into the audience. The audience works together to make rain noises. The audience is invited to join the dance party.

Potentially Anxious Moments: 1 out of 5 stars
Bartholomew the bear is sad when he cannot fit in the house. The house breaks and the animals do not have a place to live anymore.

The Biggest Little House in the Forest
Student Matinee Pricing Guide

Themes

Friendship Celebration Loneliness
Fear Sadness Collaboration
Forgiveness Community Belonging


Curriculum Connections

Dancing Emotional Repair Emotions
Friendship Repair Problem Solving Sequencing
Sharing Daily Routine Creating & Constructing


Recommended Reading

The Mitten by Jan Brett A House for Hermit the Crab by Eric Carle
The Little Red Hen by Paul Galdone, Byron Barton & Carol Ottolenghi Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse by Kevin Henkes
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff Mushroom in the Rain by Mirra Ginsburg


Minnesota Early Childhood Indicators of Progress

Arts A1; A2; A3; A4;
Scientific Thinking ST1; ST2; ST5; ST6;
Social Emotional S3; S4; S5; S6; S8;


Designed for Audience Interaction!

We know that children like to touch and move, and we have included some ways for them to do so during the play.

  • There are specific moments when the actor interacts with the audience including by using bubbles, feathers and dancing.
  • We want children to feel free to vocalize. This is a no-shushing zone.
  • After the show, there will be a chance to meet the puppets and actor.

Your experience of the play starts as soon as you enter the lobby!

  • Ushers will give you a place in the lobby to put your coats. You will be invited to take off your shoes and put on a pair of cozy puppet socks.
  • There will be activities in the lobby including books, coloring, sensory exploration, and puppet play. Students are encouraged to play and explore.
  • We recommend arriving around 10:15am to allow time for creative play. Seating does not begin until the show starts at 10:30am.

How is this play different from your other field trip offerings?

  • This special offering is specifically designed for preschool students. While our other field trip offerings allow 1 adult for every 5 students, this production allows for 1 adult for every 2 students.
  • While our other performances have capacities of 745 (in the UnitedHealth Group stage) or 298 (in the Cargill stage), this performance is limited to 115 people to allow for a more intimate setting.
  • Seating for our preschool performances does not begin until 10:30am when the show starts. Seating is done in library storytelling style with students up front and adults behind.
  • 10:30am performances are open to the public. Your performance may include school groups, community groups, and/or family groups.

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