Little Tykes Theatre

Looking “close up” on “invisible ink”

Hello Junior Sleuths,

We are 9 days away from our exciting summer camp !

But before that, let’s talk a little bit more about cameras and more specifically camera angles :

First of all , what is a camera angle?

It’s simply the way (or angle) you are going to film your actors. Will you film only their eyes? —> An extreme close-up.
Or on the contrary will you film them from the third floor of the Eiffel tower? —> An extreme long shot.
You would think it doesn’t really matter how you film your actors as long as they say their text , we can see them and understand them. But in fact each shot has a special meaning, and whether you know it or not , it will have an impact on you when you watch the movie.

Now, there are many many many many (did I mention many?) different kinds of camera shots that can be done. But we are going to have a look at just a few and their meanings.

First let’s look at the “Establishing shot” : it sets up or “establishes” the setting of movie, it is typically at the beginning of a movie. It gives you the context of where the story is taking place : a city, the desert, Space, a castle, a futuristic world.. this will help the audience understand where and sometimes when, the story is taking place, as soon as they see it.

You can even find them in animation movies , check out this “establishing” shot from Monster’s Inc :

Now let’s have a look at the “Close up” shot : the close up is when you film your actors close enough so you can see their faces very well and therefore their emotions. It is done so you can really feel and experience , as an audience , what the character is feeling. You have different kinds of Close ups, from “medium close up” which is framed for the head until the belly button , the “big close up” where only the face is in frame, to “extreme close up” where you can see only for example an eye, or mouth . The closer you get to the character, the closer you should feel what they are feeling or thinking.

Can you spot the different “close up” shots in the merchant scene from Aladdin ?

The “Low angle” shot : This is when the camera is held very low making the actor look very big. This is usually done when we want to show that the character is heroic, or scary even !
On the contrary the “High angle” shot is when the camera is held high to make the actor look “small” , this is done to show they are feeling uncomfortable or inferior to someone.

The “Bridging” shot : This is done to show that time is passing by, or to show the characters moving from one place to another.

And lastly the “cowboy” shot : this is known for it’s use in westerns, the camera is framed from the mid thigh up, and when it comes you know Clint Eastwood is about to win a showdown !

Here’s a link with a few of the examples of different angles in one video just to give you a better idea :

Secret messages
Have you ever wanted to write a secret message to someone that no one else could read ? Well now you can! Let’s learn how to make invisible ink !
For this you are going to need a few things :









Red Mixing Bowl Large

















1) Squeeze all the juice out of the lemon into the bowl
2) With the spoon add a few drops of water to the lemon juice in the bowl
3) Stir
4) Dip the cotton swab into the bowl and write your message on the paper 5) Let it set for 3-5 minutes

Your secret message is now written and invisible to anyone who may want to steal your secrets!


But if you do want your undercover spies to decode the message tell them to simply place the paper under a lamp for 5-10 minutes (or until it turns brown) .. Patience it may take a while!




Solve some mysteries before our camp !

9780590880169When we were kids we absolutely loved the cute Olsen twins in their show “The adventures of
Mary-Kate & Ashley “ , you can watch “The case of the Volcano Mystery” :






“Nate the great” is a very good series of books written by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat. 510MkY4x32L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Nate is a detective, a child version of Sherlock Holmes. He solves crimes with his dog, Sludge and they both love pancakes !


“Cam Jansen” written by David A. Adler , is no ordinary detective, she has a photographic memory ! This is very useful to solve all the mysteries surrounding her.

We won’t forget of course our fellow “pet” detectives ! “Basil of Baker street “ written by Eve Titus , tells the story of Basil of Baker Street and his friend Doctor David Q. Dawson. Together they solve the many crimes and cases of the mouse world. Both live in Holmestead, a mouse community built in the cellar of 221B Baker Street, where Sherlock Holmes is a tenant upstairs.

Disney also made a movie of this book, called “Great mouse detective” :

Looking forward to seeing all of you and solving many a more mysteries!