The Headless Monster

The Magic of Reading in English

The Headless Monster is an activity that encourages students to read in English. Children will discover that books in English are not so difficult to understand; moreover, they are fun and exciting!

The core of the activity is a mystery novel:

Promotional image of The Headless Monster by Ruskus Patruskus
The Wicked Witch gets ready to vanish the Monster‘s head!

A mysterious and stormy night, scientist Crazy Doc strives to bring The Monsterhis masterpieceto life. Then he falls asleep, and the Wicked Witch vanishes the monster’s head. When Crazy Doc wakes up and realizes what happened, he cries helplessly. His friend, the Great Painter, makes a botched new head for him. Tired of laughing so much, the Wicked Witch makes the Monster’s head reappear, to everyone’s surprise.

One of the strongest points of the activity is that some students take part as actors, and this direct involvement makes children enjoy the activity intensely.

They will also visit The Library, where a puppet fond of reading will introduce them to books in English about magic, games, cooking, and humor. One of the most amazing books is The Book of Spells, which allows students to read magic spells aloud with unexpected results.

Books in English are an excellent resource for expanding vocabulary, and a great way to encourage students to read them is by using puppets, theater, clowning and magic!



Fact Sheet

  • Show’s title: The Headless Monster.
  • Author and performer: Ruskus Patruskus.
  • Play’s genre and subject: children’s show about reading in English.
  • Language:  totally in English. It includes a teacher’s guide.
  • Duration: 45 min.
  • Age range: 3rd to 6th grade. (It can be adapted for 1st and 2nd grade.)
  • Performing space: any place with a minimum surface area of 3 x 4 m.
  • Sound and equipment: a 20 W battery-powered amplifier is included. There is no need for a microphone, neither platform nor special lighting. In performances with 80 children or more, a 250 W PA system with a wireless microphone is provided.
  • Set up and strike time: set up 45 min, strike 25 min. (Performances with PA system: set up 1 h, strike 35 min).