Ibn Battuta: The One-Person Play

Contributor: Brian Anthony. Lesson ID: 11329

"With age comes wisdom." With age come stories of times past, with lessons to learn for today! Create a one-person play about Ibn Battuta visiting today's world. Step into this world traveler's shoes!

categories

World

subject
History
learning style
Auditory, Visual
personality style
Otter, Golden Retriever
Grade Level
High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

Audio:

One of the many important functions of aged people is to tell stories.

They are looking back over a rich lifetime of many experiences — some good, some not so good — many containing valuable lessons.

Write down your recollection of someone who has played that role in your life, a storyteller who related experiences full of lessons. Reflect on the following questions and discuss with a parent or teacher:

  • What stories do you remember from that person?
  • What ideas, values, and information did those stories communicate?
  • What role does storytelling play in human societies?

Ibn Battuta was a master storyteller.

In fact, most scholars believe he did not write the book, The Rihla, that is attributed to him. In all likelihood, he narrated his stories and recollections to a writer who put them to paper.

If you missed or need to review the previous lessons in our The Journey of Ibn Battuta series, find them in the right-hand sidebar under Related Lessons.

Your task in this lesson is to bring Ibn Battuta (the man) to life by creating a one-person play. One-person plays are a light but powerful way of presenting a character. They often focus on just one character and his or her experiences, so are ideal for highlighting this great figure from history!

First, let's take a look at an example of a one-person play. This is about the famous and beloved 19th-century American writer, Mark Twain, author of Huckleberry Finn and other favorites. Watch the video, Citizen Twain starring Val Kilmer, at the Ryman Auditorium:

 

Now, reflect on the following questions and write:

  • What was the purpose of the story Twain told in this short excerpt?
  • What information or ideas do you get from the monologue about Twain's personal character?
  • What kind of story would Ibn Battuta tell if he were the subject of a one-person play like this?

In the Got It? section, you will revisit The Rihla at least one more time to collect information about Ibn Battuta — the historical figure and the character — to prepare for your theatrical debut!

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