What if we can do PQA, but we don’t feel comfortable getting a story going? That’s easy. All we have to do is start circling the first sentence of our script (see the sample stories in TPRS in a Year! for how to do that), establish the problem, and get the actor up and going somewhere.
Many of us have, by now, noticed that the word “where” is a very powerful word in moving things forward. We get answers from the North Pole to Antarctica and every place in between. All we have to do is choose one, and then believe in our minds that the Junction City Mall is over there in the right corner of our classroom near the door.
Who is to say that it isn’t? And then, after asking “where”, we say (I say it in English to make it quick) “I need a little boy and a mother”. Who is to say that Dennis (sitting there with his hand up with that look on his face that he wants to act) isn’t a little boy who wants to go with his mother (sitting there in the middle row directly in front of us with her hand up applying for the mother job) to the mall? Everything we need is there for the story, and all we have to do is believe it to implement it.
We believe that the mall is over there in the corner. We believe that the little boy and his mother get up and go to the mall. We see it in our minds. I say in English, “C’mon!” and make a motion with my arm to get those two actors to come up in front of the room.
Then I stand next to them and put a hand on the boy’s shoulder, and point to the mall over there in the corner and ask the class how they get there (left out if time is a factor – otherwise the source of great travel vocabulary and bizarre moments) and then off they go to the mall because I believe that it is all real. They end up failing to solve the problem and then off they go to the third location, with me guiding them along, and my script guiding me if the need arises.
So, what I am trying to express here is how easy it is to get a story going. Just get the kids standing in front of the class, ask questions to solve the problem, and, mainly, believe that it is happening.
Credit: Susan Gross