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Session 5

Alice meets all sorts of creatures as she swims around in a pool of her own tears. She joins in a Caucus-race: but how can you win a race with no rules? And who will give the prizes?

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Session 5 score

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    Activity 1
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    Activity 2

Activity 1

Drama

Alice in Wonderland: Part 3 - The Caucus-race

Alice meets all sorts of creatures as she swims around in a pool of her own tears. She joins in a Caucus-race: but how can you win a race with no rules? And who will give the prizes? While you listen to the audio, see how many examples of first conditional you can spot. Then take a look at the transcript to see them in bold. 

Listen to the audio and complete the activity

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Narrator
Hello. So far, Alice had been very small, then very tall, then very small again in this strange Wonderland she found when she chased a talking rabbit and fell down the rabbit hole. Now she was swimming in a pool of her own tears, wondering what was going to happen next.

Alice
Ooh, whatever's this? It's a mouse! Hello mouse! You're a very big mouse… but then, I'm a very, very little girl today. Whatever next? If this mouse talks, I won't be at all surprised… Oh Mouse, do you know the way out of this pool? I'm very tired of swimming about here, Mouse! Mouse? Hmmm. Perhaps it doesn't understand English. Maybe it's a French mouse! Now, what was that French I learned in school? Où est ma chatte?

Mouse
Chatte? Cat! Did you say cat?!

Alice
Oh, I'm so sorry Mouse! I forgot mice don't like cats.

Mouse
Would you like cats if you were me?

Alice
Well… perhaps not. But my cat Dinah is different. She's such a sweet, quiet thing. If you meet her, I'm sure you'll like her.

Mouse
We won't talk about cats any more, thank you!

Alice
We won't! Er… do you - do you er… like dogs? They can be so sweet and they kill all the rats… and… Oh dear!

Alice
Oh please come back, dear Mouse. We won't talk about cats or dogs, if you don't like them. Swim with me to the shore.

Narrator
So Alice and the mouse swam to the edge of the pool of tears. And as they swam, they were joined by lots of other creatures that had fallen into the pool, just like Alice and the mouse. There was a duck and a dodo and many other strange animals that Alice had never seen before. All the creatures had the same question.

Animals
How can we get dry? What can we do? I'm so far away from my nest, that pool was very wet and salty, oh it's no good for my fur, etc…

Dodo
We must have a Caucus-race!

Animals
Hooray! Hoorah!

Alice
What's a Caucus-race, Mr Dodo?

Dodo
The best way to explain a Caucus-race is to have a Caucus-race!

Narrator
It was the strangest race Alice had ever seen. The Dodo marked a circle for the racecourse and everyone stood anywhere they wanted to. Nobody said "One, two, three, go!" but everyone started running. Alice ran too, although she didn't quite know where she should run to. Everyone ran left and right in any direction they pleased. But after half an hour of running, everybody was quite dry again.

Dodo
The race is over!

Multiple voices
But who has won? Did I win? Who is the winner?

Dodo
Ah... yes... Who has won? Who has won? Everybody has won and everyone must have prizes! And she must give the prizes!

Alice
Me?

Narrator
Alice didn't have any prizes for a Caucus-race with her, but she searched in her pockets and found some sweets. She had enough sweets to give exactly one sweet to every runner.  

Alice
Here you are, one for you, and one for you…

Animals
Thank you very much… oh dear, this has no taste whatsoever… oh, I shall choke…it's rather good, yes very tasty…

Alice
And one for you – now, does everybody have one? Oh, I must say, my cat Dinah would love a Caucus-race…

Animals
Let's go! Come away! Time for bed! Oh, is it that time already? Cats - ugh!

Alice
Oh dear. I said it again. Come back! Please! I'm sorry! Poor Dinah. Nobody seems to like her down here and I'm sure she's the best cat in the world!

Narrator
Poor Alice felt very lonely and sad. She cried quietly to herself for a while. But in a little while, she heard footsteps in the distance. She looked up to see who it was. Next time, I'll tell you who the footsteps belonged to, and how Alice got so big she filled a whole house, and what happened when she kicked poor Bill the lizard up and out of the chimney. Goodbye.

Download

You can download the Drama from our Unit 23 downloads page or from our BBC Learning English Drama podcast page.

Vocabulary

shore
the place where the water of a lake, sea or river meets the land

creatures (singular: creature)
animals

dodo
a large bird that lived in the past and could not fly.

prizes (singular: prize)
something you get as a reward for winning a race or competition

destroy
to break something completely so it can't be used at all

Alice in Wonderland Quiz

3 Questions

What have you learnt about Alice in our drama? Test yourself with this quiz.

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Credits

Produced by Catherine Chapman

Cast: Darren Benedict, Alice Brown, Michael Harrison, Sophie Napleton, BBC Learning English Team

Illustration: Shan Pillay

Scriptwriter: Nicola Prentis

Sound: Paul Scott

Music: Vera Harte

More

You can find all the episodes of Alice in Wonderland and our other BBC Learning English dramas on our Drama page.

Next

You can catch up with part 4 of Alice in Wonderland in Session 5 of Unit 24. Now it's time for the Weekly Quiz. How many can you get right?

Session Vocabulary

  • shore
    the place where the water of a lake, sea or river meets the land

    creatures (singular: creature)
    animals

    dodo
    a large bird that lived in the past and could not fly.

    prizes (singular: prize)
    something you get as a reward for winning a race or competition 

    destroy
    to break something completely so it can't be used at all