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The White Fox / During Reading / /

Releasing the Fox

Creating a scene to explore character emotions at a key moment in the story.

Lesson length: 1 session

Lesson from The White Fox series

Required reading: Pages 51-55

Text potential

  • Narrative features: Character emotions
  • Inference opportunities: Character Inference
  • Narrative features: Plot: key events

Strategies used

  • Drama Strategies: Ritual

Purpose

The pace of stories varies, and events carry different weights. Significant moments often evoke strong emotional responses for characters and also for readers. The moment the fox is released is a significant event in the story. Recreating this scene with drama slows the action down and provokes a sense of significance for the reader as well as the opportunity to reflect on the character’s emotions.

Preparation

  • ‘Zone of Relevance’, one enlarged to at least A3 and A4 copies one per pair
  • ‘Emotions Cards’ one per pair

Process

Re-read the section of the book where the fox is released (pages 51-55). Ask:

  • Do you think it would have been easy for Sol seeing the fox leave? 
  • Have you ever had mixed feelings about something?

Invite the children to go into role as Sol and ask them to place themselves in this scene. Re-read the section again, asking them to focus on their feelings at this moment. Distribute Emotions Cards to pairs and ask them to use the Zone of Relevance to sort from most relevant feelings in the centre. Any which are not applicable are placed outside the circle. 

Introduce the word bittersweet, explaining that it can describe an experience that has aspects of happiness mixed with sadness. 

Focus on the illustration on pages 52-3. Ask:

  • Where do you think the four characters are positioned in this scene?

Organise the class into groups of four. Each child should take on the role of a different family member. Each member of the family will compose some words to say as the fox is released. Once they have written their lines, the group should arrange themselves into the scene. The teacher should read the lines from the story:

She jumped down and then, without a backward glance, headed off deeper into the trees.   

In role, at the same time, the children should speak their words. They can repeat the same line several times. 

Final reflection

Imagine you are the fox:

  • Who would you like to speak to?
  • And what would you like to say?

Key vocabulary

bittersweet, sadness, hope, despair, joy, love, gratitude, anxious, calm, relieved, devastated, thankful, lonely

Resources

Zone of relevance

Zone of Relevance

White Fox Emotion Cards

The White Fox Emotion Cards

Contributors

Sam Keeley

Formerly a teacher and local authority advisory teacher, Sam now works with Just Imagine as an English consultant and manager of the year 6 Reading Gladiators programme.

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