Little House on the Prairie
Laura Ingalls Wilder
This suggested script is taken from chapter 11, "Indians in the House," in which the Ingalls family is visited by nearby neighbors; mysterious and demanding Indian men.

SUGGESTED STAGING:
The narrator stands at a lectern. Laura and Mary sit on low stools. Pa and Ma sit on chairs.

NARRATOR'S OPENING LINES:

We shall present a scene from Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The characters are Laura Ingalls, read by ________; her well-behaved sister, Mary, read by ________; their Ma, a quiet but courageous woman, read by ________; and their Pa, a fair, honest man, read by ________. I, _________,am the narrator.

Since the Ingalls family moved West, Laura has hoped to see Indians. Even though their log cabin stands close to an old Indian trail, Laura has been disappointed, until one day her father goes hunting, leaving the dog, Jack, to guard his home and family.

SCRIPTING SUGGESTIONS:

    1. Begin the scene with Pa's telling Jack he cannot go along.
    2. Throughout the script include instructions to tell the reader what voice or facial expressions to use, such as frightened, startled, relieved.
    3. After Pa tells the girls not to unchain Jack, have the narrator say that Laura and Mary feel sorry for Jack and play near him all morning. Suddenly, as Jack stands and growls, Laura sees two strange men walking toward the house.
    4. Continue with Laura's telling Mary to look.
    5. Instruct the readers to stage-whisper so that they can be heard.
    6. After Mary says that they should not leave Ma alone with the Indians, have the narrator say that the girls tear themselves away from Jack's protection and force themselves to enter the cabin. Standing before the hearth are the two Indian men demanding with stony-faced gestures that Ma cook a meal for them. Laura watches from behind a wooden plank until satisfied at last, the men stalk out.

    7. Continue by having Ma sigh aloud and let Mary respond as written.

    8. After Ma comments about skunk skins, have Laura briefly describe to Ma why they left Jack and came inside.

    9. Have Ma tell the girls that they were brave and then continue by saying that they need to prepare dinner.

    10. Let the narrator say that Laura had just finished setting the table when Pa arrives home.

    11. Then let Laura say in a frightened voice, "Pa, oh, Pa! Indians!"

    12. Continue as Pa asks what is the matter and if Laura has seen Indians.

    13. Have Pa stop after the word "band," and have Ma shake her head as written.

    14. Continue with Pa's telling the girls to come with him to skin the rabbit. Continue his speech with his plans for the rabbit skin.

    15. Have Laura tell Pa what she thinks would have happened if they had let Jack loose, then continue with the dialogue as written.

    16. End the scene with Pa's saying that no harm will come to the girls if they always obey.

    NARRATOR'S CLOSING LINES:
    It is not easy for Laura to be obedient. Sometimes she feels jealous of Mary, who seems truly to enjoy being good. But on the wide, flat prairie each is the other's only playmate. The months of building a new home and preparing for the future give the girls, as well as their parents, busy days filled with work, play, and many exciting challenges.

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