Nature of Sound – Puppet Show

Calls of the Wild

Characters: Harry Hare, Chelsea Chickadee, Woodrow Woodpecker, Jenny Jay, Oliver Owl.

Props: cup of water and a straw; signs for audience participation: “chick-a-dee, dee, dee,” “whshhhhh,” “jay-jay-jay.”

Directions: Ahead of time, assign people in the audience a sound to make when their sign appears. It may be helpful to have one person to do sound effects and hold up the signs for audience participation.

Harry Hare   Gee, it’s almost morning and I’m still hungry. I’d like to go across the field to get to the bramble patch, but it might be dangerous. I’d better listen with my ears to be sure it’s safe.

(hold up sign for chickadee calls)

Chelsea Chickadee  Hi, Harry Hare.

Hare  Why hello, Chelsea Chickadee.  You’re up early. You must be traveling with your flock today. I hear lots of chickadees calling in the trees.

Chickadee  You’re right. It’s how we stay together in the forest.  Even if we can’t see each other, we can still hear each other.

Hare  Why stay together?

Chickadee  Why, there are more eyes to find food and more ears to listen for predators. Sound helps us stay together.

Hare  Well, I try to stay away from other hares! But my ears help me listen for predators.

Chickadee  If I had big ears like yours, things might be different! But I’m better off staying with my group. So long, Harry Hare!

Hare  What’s wrong with my ears? My ears are important to me. I can tell where I am just by listening. Here’s the hollow log.  I like to hop along on top of it. (galloping sound) And here’s the gurgling brook. (bubbling sound) It’s not frozen yet, so it helps me find my way. My ears tell me about the weather too. There’s wind in the fir trees today.

(hold up sign for wind sounds)

And my ears can tell me who’s around. (tapping sound) I bet that’s Woodrow Woodpecker tapping on the old dead snag.

Woodrow Woodpecker  Shhhhhh. I’m listening.

Hare Listening to what?

Woodpecker  Listening for food. If the wood sounds hollow when I tap it, I know there’s a juicy grub inside. Mm-mm.

Hare Listening for food? That wouldn’t help me to find my food! What about when you drum on the tree trunk? Does that help you find food?

Woodpecker  Oh no. That’s how I advertise my territory. Mrs. Downy and I need enough space to raise our young, you know. Drumming keeps other woodpeckers away.

Hare   Well, happy hunting, Woody. I’m going to find some tasty twigs. I can almost hear them calling to me.

Woodpecker Keep your eyes and big ears open!

Hare Why does everyone think I have big ears?

(hold up sign for blue jay calls)

Those are blue jays calling. I wonder what the fuss is all about. It’s usually trouble!

Blue Jay  Jay, jay, jay! Calling all jays! Jay, jay, jay!

Hare  Uh oh. It’s a mobbing call. There must be a predator around.

Blue Jay  That’s right, Harry Hare. It’s Oliver Owl. I’m calling the jays to chase him away, but you’d better run for cover. Jay, jay, jay. (exits)

Hare Run for cover? I’m out in the middle of an open field. I’m white like the snow. I’d better freeze, and listen.

Oliver Owl  (offstage) Hoo, hoo-hoo, hooooo hooooooo.

Hare  There he is, on the edge of the field. Can I get to cover before he gets to me?

I better zig (turns) and zag (turns) and take big leaps. (wump, wump, wump) There! Made it to the trees.

Owl  Hello, Harry Hare.

Hare Oh no! It’s you, Oliver Owl. But you were far away! I didn’t hear you flying after me!

Owl  Of course not. I have silent wings, you know. It’s how I sneak up on my prey. I have such good hearing that I can hear a mouse under the snow. I can easily hear a big-eared hare bouncing over the snow.

Hare  My ears are big, but they’re just skin and hair – not at all good to eat.

Owl  No, but the rest of you looks pretty plump, and I can hear my babies begging for a meal. So, if you’ll just come out from under those boughs.

Hare  I don’t think so!

(hold up sign for blue jay calls)

Owl  Why, here come those pesky jays! They’ll peck and chase me if I don’t leave. Guess I’ll catch you later, Harry Hare! (exits)

Hare I hope not! That’s enough adventure for one day. I think I’ll look for food closer to home…only now I’m all turned around! Which way is home?!

(hold up sign for wind sounds)

Wind in the firs! That’s it – I’ll let my big ears be my guide. Here I go past the fir trees and across the gurgling brook. (bubbling noise) Along the hollow log. (galloping noise) And home at last!

(hold up sign for chickadee calls)

Chickadee  Hi, Harry. Glad you’re back! We heard the owl and we were worried you might have a hare-raising experience.

Hare  Yes, that owl just missed me! And after that I got lost! But my ears helped me find the way home.

Chickadee  Good thing, Harry! Sounds are really important in our lives.

Hare  Yup, they sure are. And these big ears of mine are ear-replaceable!



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