Tapestry of Faith: Sing to the Power: A Social Justice Program for Children Grades 4-5

Activity 3: The Old Alchemist - A Play

Activity time: 15 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Leader Resource 1, The Old Alchemist - A Play
  • Optional: Props including a bag of dirt, a bag of fake, gold-colored coins, chemistry beakers, and a large leaf

Preparation for Activity

  • Make four copies of Leader Resource 1, The Old Alchemist - A Play. On each copy, highlight the speaking part for one of the characters.
  • Plan how you will assign parts for the play. If you have a large group and enough time, you may wish to perform the play twice, giving eight people a chance to have a part, rather than four. Or, have one set of performers who read the lines and a second set of performers who act out what the readers are describing. Note: You may wish to arrange volunteers ahead of time. Give each volunteer a copy of the script (Leader Resource 1) with their speaking lines highlighted.
  • Gather props.

Description of Activity

Participants perform a play based on a story from Myanmar/Burma about a man who will try anything to turn dirt into gold.

Assign parts or ask for volunteer. Have the participants read/act out the play.

At the end of the play, ask participants to reflect on the story with questions such as:

  • Is persistence always a good thing?
  • What is the difference between showing persistence and acting stubborn?
  • Who in the story actually managed to create change? How?

Including All Participants

Allow participants who are uncomfortable performing in front of a group to fill the important role of audience members. If you are aware that a child has discomfort or difficult reading, assign them to act out a role while another participant reads the words.