From The Play’s the Thing Children’s Series
This is an easy-to-read series for emergent readers. Written as short plays, it encourages parents and children to read together, each taking a role, to make learning to read an enjoyable collaboration.
Peter Beeper, the father
Rose Beeper, the mother
Mandy and Scooter Beeper, the twins
(At the dinner table)
Mandy: I won’t eat it! It’s too… too…
Scooter: Prickly! I can’t eat food with prickles.
Dad: Now, kids. These are called ‘artichokes.’ You just eat the soft part.
Mandy: But Mom, it’s green! I can’t eat green!
Dad: You can’t taste the color. Look. You dip the tip in butter and… yum!
Scooter: It smells yucchy. It must be good for you.
Mom: Scooter Beeper! You like things that are good for you. You eat apples and nuts and milk.
Scooter: Yes, but they are not green. Green tastes yucchy.
Dad: You may not like it, but try it. That is the only way you can learn new things.
Mandy: (Sweetly) I will taste it, Mommy. (She puts the tip of her tongue on the artichoke). Help! Help! Get me some water!
Dad: That does it! Mandy, give your artichoke to Mom. Scooter, I will take yours. Eat the rest of your supper.
Mom: But no dessert.
Mandy and Scooter: Mom!
Dad: No more words about it. Mom and I would like to eat our artichokes in peace.
Mom: This is a real treat. I love artichokes. The inside is the best.
Dad: Watch us, kids. The inside is called the heart.
Mom: And two hearts are better than one.
Mandy: Just like kids.
(Next day in the kitchen)
Mandy: Scooter, give me the salt, please.
Scooter: I do not think salt will make our cake taste good. Let’s put jelly in.
Mandy: Yes, and ketchup and milk.
Scooter: And don’t forget the peanut butter.
Mandy: Mom and Dad will love our surprise cake.
Scooter: Look, Mandy. Here is the lime jello that we did not get to eat for dessert. Let’s mix it in.
Mandy: Now our cake is done. It will be yummy.
(Mom and Dad come in)
Mom: Mandy and Scooter, what are you doing?
Mandy: We made a surprise cake for you.
Scooter: Here, Mom. Taste it.
Mom: Oh, no. I will not eat that. It’s too…too…
Dad: Sticky. It’s all sticky. I can’t eat sticky!
Scooter: Just taste it.
Mom: But it’s green!
Mandy: You can’t taste the color!
Dad: Okay. I will taste it. (He puts the tip of his tongue on the spoon). Help! Get me some water!
Scooter: I guess Moms and Dads don’t always like to try new things.
Dad: Nobody is perfect.
(At the dinner table)
Dad: Rose, this is a real treat. Artichokes two times in one week!
Mom: Yes, they were on sale this week and I know how you love them.
Scooter: What’s this on my plate? Carrots?
Mandy: I have carrots too. Boring!
Mom: You like carrots and we like artichokes. Now everyone is happy.
Mandy: Yes, happy.
Scooter: Happy? You bet!
Scooter: Mom, can I taste your artichoke?
Mom: Well, I don’t know, Scooter. I guess so. Just one bite.
Scooter: Mmm. Wow! Mandy, these taste good. Try one with butter.
Mandy: Not me. No way.
Scooter: Okay, Mandy. Then they only have to share with me.
Dad: I don’t know if I want to share with anybody. After all, artichokes are my favorite.
Scooter: But Dad, you said to try new things.
(While no one is looking, Mandy quietly picks up one leaf of the artichoke and dips it in the butter).
Mandy: Not bad, not bad.
(She grabs the whole artichoke).
Dad: Wait! That’s my artichoke!
Mandy: Here, Dad. Have some carrots.
Dad: But…my artichoke!
Mandy: Come on, Dad. I like artichokes too. Have a heart.
Dad: (Reaching for the artichoke heart) Thanks, Mandy. I think I will.