Classroom Resources

Play: Momotaroo

This play, based on a Japanese folktale, comes from a collection of plays and skits created by the ACT Japanese teachers’ group for use in their primary and junior secondary classrooms. Students work cooperatively in groups or as a class to prepare and perform the play for their classmates or at a school event.

Level: Primary, Junior_Secondary

Story Outline

A childless couple discover a baby inside a peach. They baby's name is “Momotaroo” Peach Boy. The oni from the nearby island Oni-ga-shima raid Momotaroo's village and steal all their treasures on a regular basis. When Momotaroo turns ten he decides to travel to Oni-ga-shima in order to retrieve the villagers' belongings. On his way, he meets a dog, monkey and pheasant, all of whom accompany him on his journey to help fight the oni.

Cast

ナレーター×2=narrator ×2
ももたろう(あかちゃん)=Momotaroo (baby)
ももたろう(10さい)=Momotaroo (ten years old)
おじいさん=old man
おばあさん=old woman
いぬ=dog
さる=monkey
きじ=pheasant
おにのたいしょう=Chief Oni
おに=Oni (any number)
コーラス=Chorus

Script





https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOcyqSeru2o&list=RDpOcyqSeru2o#t=1

Cultural Notes

Oni

Japanese ogres which feature in many folktales. They are large, fierce looking creatures with horns and bulging muscles, and are often red or blue in colour.
(See こぶとりじいさん)

Kibidango

a millet dumpling, specific to the Kibi region of Japan (modern day Okayama). You can still buy kibidango in Okayama, although they are smaller than the original dumpling size.

Locations in Japan

There is a cycling path on the outskirts of Okayama City (called the Kibi Plain Cycle Path) which takes you to Kibitsu-jinja, the shrine devoted to Momotaroo. You can also visit Megi-jima (also known as Oni-ga-shima, Oni Island). It is said to be the site of the clash between Momotaroo and the oni, and is located off Takamatsu, Shikoku.

Language Concepts

  • greetings, leave taking
  • animal vocabulary and sounds
  • past tense
  • ~te form
  • ~mashoo form