Primary French: Early Start 3-Ici et là
Ch.11: Cendrillon: Cinderella


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11 Cinderella

What you will learn with film 11

The Château d'Olhain.

'Cinderella's house'.

French children re-tell the story of Cinderella.

The children draw their own illustrations to the story.


This section re-tells the familiar story of Cinderella.

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Talking Point: France before the Revolution

The Cinderella story tells us a lot about what life was like under the 'Ancien Regime'. For most people, life was hard, and step-parents were common.

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Charles Perrault and his times

Charles Perrault worked in several important government jobs for King Louis XIV. When he lost his job in old age, Perrault wrote down and published a small volume of fairy tales, including Cinderella, that he intended for his young son

Here is an English version by Angela Carter that is close to his original:

...and here is another:

and more about Perrault:

All Perrault's stories ended with a moral: 'Cendrillon' had two!
Children may like Roald Dahl's "Revolting Rhymes" version of the story, which takes an updated view of the moral. Children could discuss what their moral would be.

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Château d'Olhain

Our Cinderella story was filmed at the Château d'Olhain, near Béthune.

Download a guide to the château (PDF document)

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Put on a play...!

Children in .one school decided to stage their own version of "Cendrillon" as a stage play for an audience.

Download a script from the link below: you can adapt it to suit your own class:

Download 'Cendrillon' script (PDF document)

There's more tips in Ch.3.11 in the Teacher's Manual to help you put on your own play.

(Thanks to Bawburgh School, Norfolk, and to Joan Dickie for permission to use their script)

Live acrors - or a puppet show?

Making puppets - and a puppet theatre - doesn't have to be an elaborate and time-consuming task.

One class made a cardboard cut-out puppet theatre from this book, which includes all the characters, props and scenery to stage their play in French.

Some children found it easier to speak with a French accent when giving voice to a cardboard puppet!

(Picture) Fold over the card to make a simple puppet theatre;

Characters are mounted on stiff rods (you could use straws?); they slide in to make an entrance on-stage, and jiggle around to show they are talking;

- scenery can change by sltting a new paper backdrop into the rear of the stage.

A simple puppet theatre - this one comes from an Activity Book

... you could use this Cendrillon Activity Book


The cardboard cut-out puppet theatre comes from this book, which is a fantastic resources to teach French using the very popular classic tale.

The book contains:

  • simplified French story plus playscript with easy dialogue,
  • characters to cut out and colour in,
  • mini-theatre to act out the script
  • and notes for teachers on how to use the book.

The whole book is PHOTOCOPIABLE for multiple use in class, language club or at home.


Click here to see more books

Cendrillon Activity Book

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Clicker Traditional French Stories - interactive CD

In this activity, children write and record simple character profiles by focusing on adjectives used in the story. 

Children can create an on-screen book in which they select character pictures and write basic sentences linking the starter Voici (Here is) and the character name. 

The new Clicker French Stories interactive CD encourages children to read, listen and write in the context of the familiar tales Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Jack and the Beanstalk. The CD contains over 100 ready-made activities allowing children to re-tell the story, and write their own sentences...and hear what they've written.

Click here to find out more.

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How well did you do? Try this chapter's QUIZ

If you are already signed up for EARLY START ONLINE QUIZZES, do this chapter's fun quiz to see how much you have learned.

Go to quiz
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