Happily Ever After
Some of our Key Stage 2 children recently saw a production of ‘Happily Ever After’ by Action Transport Theatre and The Proud Trust. This was inspired by Dutch children’s book ‘King and King’ by Linda De Haan and Stern Nijland which tells the story of two princes who fall in love and live happily ever after.
‘Happily Ever After’ is a twist on a traditional fairy tale that has opened up discussions with children about same-sex relationships, equal marriage and the negative impact of (often unrecognised) homophobic language and bullying. This work helps school meet their responsibility to educate about a diverse range of people.
Children in Key Stage 2 have seen the play and taken part in a post-show discussion and classroom activities which has enabled them to explore the characters, their relationships and their journey in a way that challenges stereotypes and offers them an environment where they can ask questions.
You can find frequently asked questions, access further information and a video about the show as well as images from the show at the Happily Ever After website. www.atthappilyeverafter.co.uk/schools
During the post-show discussion the children were asked if it was ok to use the word gay. The children gave mixed responses. The team explained “You are allowed to use the word gay in a nice way; not to hurt somebody, then it’s not ok”.
When asked: “If the word gay was used in a negative way to a gay person how might it make them feel?” The children gave the following responses: “feel heartbroken” and “not equal to people”.
The children agreed with the team that it was ok to be gay.
When shown the gay pride flag the children were asked what it symbolised; their responses included: “pride, people aren’t going to bring you down, no shame” and “symbol you are welcome”.
The children were asked if they would like to put a pride flag up in school. They agreed they wanted to put a flag up in school for all to see and to show we welcome everyone. Our pride rainbow flag is now proudly displayed in our entrance hall as a symbol that everyone is welcome.
Action Transport Theatre is a professional theatre company based in Ellesmere port, Cheshire. If you have any further questions regarding the production of Happily Ever After please contact them directly on 0151 357 2120.