The ‘Woolly and Tig’ stories are told from three-year-old Tig’s point of view. Tig drives the story and her thinking is there throughout.
Woolly is Tig’s toy spider and he is the ultimate comfort blanket when he magically comes alive for her in difficult situations. Woolly acknowledges all Tig’s feelings giving her empathy so that ultimately Tig is helped to make sense of the situation and find a solution. Woolly acts both as Tig’s alter ego and her big brother.
Episode breakdown / Issues addressed
‘Changing My Room’
The Situation Tig still has her old cot in her bedroom. When a new baby is born down the road, her Dad dismantles the cot to lend to the new baby.
Tigs Feelings Tig is not happy that her room is being changed, and wants her old cot back in her room again.
Woolly's Advice Woolly shows Tig how change can be fun by changing himself and her toys.
‘Hair Wash Day’
The Situation Tig is playing hide and seek with her Dad before bath time. When it is Tig’s turn to hide she overhears her Mum say that it’s hair wash day.
Tigs Feelings Tig hates having her hair washed as it stings her eyes.
Woolly's Advice Woolly gives her a few tips on how to make hair wash day bearable, ‘by closing her eyes, counting to ten and no peeping. One rubba dubba, two rubba dubba…'
Filming anecdote Woolly’s mantra of ‘One rubba dubba…' caught on quickly even before we went on air with our Composers two young daughters.
The Situation Tig is looking forward to baby Ben coming to stay for a day.
Tigs Feelings However looking after the baby for her Mum is not easy and it seems Baby Ben has suddenly become more important than Tig.
Woolly's Advice Woolly shows Tig how helping her Mum look after Baby Ben and his needs has its own rewards.
Filming Anecdote For Betsy, our Tig, helping to look after the baby needed no encouragement.
The Situation When Timmy comes to play he shows Tig how to draw monsters. Timmy presents Tig with his drawings. Tig loves them and puts them under her bed. In the night the monsters roar and wake up Tig .
Tig’s Feelings Tig has a love hate relationship with the monsters, which she likes in the day but not at night.
Woolly's Advice The next day Woolly suggests at night to put all monsters to bed. ‘Night night monsters’
The Situation When Tig’s friend Angel comes to play.
Tig’s Feelings Tig feels angry at seeing her friend playing with her favourite doll.
Woolly's Advice It can be very upsetting at first to see someone else play with your toys. However if you want a friend to stay and play you need to share toys. The good thing about sharing toys is that they can become new and fun again.
Filming Anecdote Interestingly this story repeated itself for real when we were filming another episode. One of our young performers took huge exception to her doll being put to bed by someone else and filming had to stop until the situation was resolved.
The Situation One cold day Tig visits the botanic glass house with her Mum and Dad.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is very upset when on her way home she discovers she has lost her scarf, hat and gloves.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig to find what she has lost. When you lose something, think back over all the events of the day for clues.
Filming Anecdote A sub theme of the story was that it was an extremely cold day. The weather was kind to us and the first fall of snow came the night before filming.
The Situation Tig visits the dentist to have her teeth counted.
Tig’s Feelings She is very excited by the whole trip. However when she finally sits in the dentist’s chair, she refuses to open her mouth.
Woolly's Advice Woolly encourages Tig to open her mouth wide for the dentist as it is as easy as yawning or laughing or eating a plum.
Filming Anecdote When we filmed this episode Betsy didn’t want to comply with the final examination. It was laughter that eased the situation.
The Situation When Tig goes to the swing park with her Dad she sees her friend Angel playing with some children she doesn’t know.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is shy of the other children. Maybe they won’t want to play with her.
Woolly's Advice Woolly suggests Tig uses him as the centre of a new game the other child can join in with.
‘The Dance Class’
The Situation When Tig goes to her first dancing class she doesn’t join in because the dancing teacher shouts.
Tig’s Feelings Tig thinks the teacher is shouting at her.
Woolly's Advice Woolly persuades Tig to join in by explaining that the teacher isn’t shouting at her but shouting to be heard above the music. Woolly shows Tig how much fun it is joining in the dancing with all the other children.
Filming Anecdote When we were filming Betsy was a little overwhelmed with so many other children. However Betsy enjoyed herself once she found a friend to hold hands with.
The Situation Tig’s Mum and Dad take her and her friend Angel to the fun fair.
Tig’s Feelings Tig finds all the noises from the fun fair overwhelming and frightening and she wants to go home.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig to conquer her fear of the funfair by finding out where all the different noises are coming from.
Filming Anecdote We filmed this episodes during the big storm in Scotland on the 4th of January. Masonry was falling everywhere and our Producers chimney wiped out her neighbours kitchen. The Clyde just outside our location was at record height and vehicles were being blown over everywhere. However nothing stops for filming and Glasgow came out in force for the fun of the fair!
The Situation When Tig goes shopping with her Mum she sees a clown.
Tig’s Feelings The clown frightens her, Tig is scared of the clown with his rubbery face.
Woolly's Advice Woolly explains that the clown is just a man with a painted face. He suggests Tig goes and have her face painted like a clown too.
‘Eating New Foods’
The Situation When Tig visits a restaurant she is put off eating a new dish when she tastes an olive.
Tig’s Feelings Tig finds the taste of the olive disgusting.
Woolly's Advice Woolly encourages Tig to try the dish again - ‘You now know what you don’t like so find out what you do like’
The Situation Tig gets fed up at a party because she doesn’t win ‘Pass the Parcel’.
Tig’s Feelings Doesn’t like the party and doesn’t like not winning.
Woolly's Advice Woolly tells Tig that it isn’t all about winning it is about having fun playing.
Filming Anecdote At parties emotions are heightened. Filming the ‘Woolly and Tig’ party was no exception as all the children took the games extremely seriously. Luckily the actor who played the party organiser, was extremely adept at defusing situations and moving things on quickly.
‘First Day at Nursery’
The Situation When a new boy comes to Tig’s nursery school he is unhappy.
Tig’s Feelings Tig doesn’t like the new boy being unhappy and separating himself from the rest of the children.
Woolly's Advice Woolly tells Tig how to help a little boy on his first day at nursery school by explaining why he looks sad, and encouraging him to join in and make the new boy feel welcome. Tig lends the boy Woolly for the day.
The Situation The fire alarm goes off at the nursery and the building is evacuated until the fire fighters gives the all clear.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is unsettled when she returns inside and is frightened of the fire alarm going off again.
Woolly's Advice Fire alarms are not there to worry us they are there to make us feel safe.
The Situation When Tig goes to play with a friend the friend’s Dad arrives and looks different from Tig’s Dad. He has a beard.
Tig’s Feelings Tig doesn’t like the Dad with the beard. He looks fierce and frightening.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig overcome her fear of a man with a beard which she finds rather strange.
The Situation When Tig goes to the swimming pool she doesn’t like all the water and splashes.
Tig’s Feelings Tig doesn’t like sudden splashes. They scare her.
Woolly's Advice A very gradual acclimatization to the water in the pool. i.e. getting closer and closer until Tig is happy even putting her head under the water. ‘A swimming pool is just like a big bath’
‘The Painting Day’
The Situation Tig needs to go to the toilet but she doesn’t like the new big strange toilets. She refuses to go inside.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is not happy and feels uncomfortable going to the new toilets. Also the hand driers frighten her.
Woolly's Advice You have to be happy and relaxed to go to the toilet. A new toilet is not that frightening once you know what everything is and does. ‘In the end we all need to go to the toilet wherever it is.’
Filming Anecdote Betsy didn’t like the hand drier in the toilet and took some persuading to use it. ‘Just a hairdryer stuck on the wall’ says Woolly.
‘Museum of Imagination’
The Situation On a visit to a museum Tig’s friend Timmy tells her a lot of imaginary stories. When Timmy tells her about pirates on an old ship, Tig becomes scared.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is scared of pirates at the museum.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig differentiate between imagination and what is real.
‘Granny No No’
The Situation Tig thinks her Granny is always saying ‘no’ to her.
Tig’s Feelings Tig feels hurt and cross.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig bring out the positive in her Granny. Think of all the things you can do so that Granny can say ‘yes’.
The Situation Tig’s behaviour upsets Granny’s new dog ‘Herbie’.
Tig’s Feelings Tig doesn’t like Herbie. He barks and is scary.
Woolly's Advice When meeting a new dog be quiet and still and only do what the owner tells you. Find out what dogs like and don’t like. Never go up to strange dogs. ‘You need to get to know Herbie and Herbie needs to get to know you.’
‘The Bus Ride’
The Situation After a day of kite flying with her Dad, Tig is tired. Riding on the bus home she challenges all those around her.
Tig’s Feelings Tig feels tired and grumpy.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig be more considerate, other people have feelings too. Dad is tired but he doesn’t stomp around being rude. ‘Just because you feel tired doesn’t mean you stop caring.’
Filming Anecdote This was a fun day filming with a lot of getting on and off buses. The highlight was flying a kite. Betsy was amazed when she saw the kite fly high into the sky. ‘It’s just like a real kite’ she said.
The SituationTig and her Mum go shopping for new clothes. Tig can’t decide between a red shoe and a blue shoe.
Tig’s FeelingsTig likes both red and blue and can’t understand why she can’t have one of each.
Woolly's AdviceOne red shoe and one blue shoe might look fun but shoes come in pairs. Sometimes when you are choosing you need a bit of help.
Filming AnecdoteThe script demanded that Tig chose the blue shoes but Betsy wanted the red shoes.
The Situation Tig loses her Mum in a supermarket.
Tig’s Feelings Tig thinks she has been abandoned.
Woolly's Advice Stay in the one spot and Mum will find you in no time, she will be just as worried as you are.
Filming Anecdote This story grew from a real situation. We were filming at the busy funfair and Betsy’s older sister Maisie and her cousin got lost. Every one was running about this way and that. However when a group of us stopped in the one place they were found.
The Situation When Tig’s Dad goes to hospital, Tig refuses to to see him.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is confused as Dad looks different.
Woolly's Advice Dad might not look quite like Dad, but Dad is still the same Dad underneath. He just looks different with all the things to make him better.
‘The Sleep Over’
The Situation Tig is excited about staying the night with her friend until she finds herself awake at night and her friend asleep.
Tig’s Feelings At night she finds herself all alone with every one else asleep, Tig feels sad and misses her Mum.
Woolly's Advice Woolly advises Tig to go to sleep by counting up all the kisses her Mum gives her every day.
The Situation Tig’s Mum and Dad have a very busy day.
Tig’s Feelings Tig can’t understand why they won’t pay her any attention, feeling ignored and rejected.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig understand and deal with the situation. ‘When Mummy and Daddy are busy, you need to be busy too’.
Filming Anecdote The ‘Busy’ story grew from a real situation with Betsy. During filming there was an intense discussion going on around her to do with various logistics. “What are you talking about?” she kept saying and there was the story.
The Situation Tig goes on holiday. At the Holiday camp everyone else is just that little bit older than Tig.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is frustrated she can’t to all the things that her friends can do.
Woolly's Advice Woolly encourages Tig in all the things she can do.
The Situation Tig’s hair is getting longer and longer but she refuses to have her hair cut.
Tig’s Feelings Tig associates scissors with danger and does not want them near her hair.
Woolly's Advice Woolly persuades Tig that having a hair cut might make life a little easier. 'Having your hair cut makes you feel all shiny and new’
‘One Step at a Time’
The Situation When Tig and her Dad are confronted by a big cow Tig is frightened.
Tig’s Feelings Tig is frightened of the big animal.
Woolly's Advice Woolly helps Tig overcome her fear by taking one step at a time.