Harold and April

Jan 4, 2012

Learn more about this project

I created the Scratch animation Harold and April as my response to a project to create an interactive ethical story. An ethical story is a story that has a moral to be taught through the decisions made by the characters in the story. At the end of the story the characters learn a lesson and get the lesson out to the reader on how they should make the right decisions and then the character gets the moral of the story across to the reader throughout the story.

My story is about two twins named Harold and April who have a loving father and an evil stepmother who shows no affection towards the twins. They twins are very kind children but the stepmother, Clarissa, wants to get rid of the two children because she finds them to be useless and she wants to be able to live without sharing the same roof with those two children. She believed that it was because of the two children that she couldn’t eat like she should. The father, Jonathan, is a lumberjack who is struggling to get everyone to eat, especially his children and his demanding wife who does nothing but complain. Until one day there was an offer made by the step-mother, that the father should send the children away to the forest where they will most likely be eaten by a bear. The father has to choose whether he should or shouldn’t send his children away to the forest. If he does decide to send the children in the forest, the children will be very hungry and they will meet these two ogres who try to eat them. They have to decide whether to help them or not because they are total strangers. If they do the ogres will run away because of the knight in shining armor that comes to save them and if the children don’t agree then they will find a way home.. If he doesn’t send his children into the forest, they will all go on a fishing trip where the mother disappears and is never to be seen again. And they all live happily ever after.

My story was inspired by thinking of candy because it was the week before winter break and I was thinking about these Willy Wonka candy canes. I decided on my story by thinking of all the times I have talked to strangers that are very kind people, but not all of them are who we think they are. I knew that Hansel and Gretel met the witch who had tempted them with her house made of sweets and even though she was a complete stranger they had accepted her offer of being her guests. I got the idea from a website where the story from Grimms Fairy Tales. Here is the website http://www.mordent.com/folktales/grimms/hng/hng.html.

I think I was successful in creating my story because I was able to complete all of the requirements and I came with all of the possible scenarios. The scratch story itself was at least 3 minutes and it was. The whole story’s outcome is affected by the decisions made by the player.


Comment from janice

16ngj's picture
Submitted by 16ngj on Thu, 2012-01-05 15:56.

I liked the story of your animation.

I was confused by the animation was set up. The characters talked really fast so it was difficult for me to read the dialogue. Also, there was a random knight who appeared in the second background in the house. Also, after my decision to not let the children go, it led me to these woods and the children talked about something different.

The ethical dilemma in your story is whether or not the father should send his kids out to the forest. I understood the choices and the choices were a bit tempting. The mechanism for making the choices were clear.

Comment by Christian

16trottic's picture
Submitted by 16trottic on Thu, 2012-01-05 19:33.

I liked how your main characters, Harold and April, are tyring to make the best of their bad situation. This quality makes the viewers have sympathy for them.

I noticed how the dialogue between the characters was too fast and almost impossible to read. Also, the consequences of each decision are unclear. Lastly, a knight appears in the middle of the animation and appears to have no significance whatsoever to the story.

The ethical dilemma in your story is unclear. I understand the choices but I do not understand the consequences because the dialogue is too fast. Sometimes, characters speak at the same time. The wrong choice was not very tempting because the children appear so good-hearted that doing anything bad against them (which was the wrong choice) would be evil. Therefore, the choice was not tempting. Something should have been done to make the children look bad so that punishement would seem just and tempting. The mechanism for making choices is clear. Your biggest problem is that the consequences of the ethical decision were not clear.

Ashley's Feedback :)

16wanga's picture
Submitted by 16wanga on Thu, 2012-01-05 19:42.

I loved the characters that you used in your story! They're so cute!

I noticed that the words and dialogue were a lot and they went by very fast, so it was very hard to read it all. The story was also confusing for me due to the random characters and backgrounds popping up at random moments.

The ethical dilemma in your story was good, but it was kind of hard for me to make the decision because the screen immediately changed to the "The End" one, and the random knight and mushrooms(?) were blocking the dialogue, so it wasn't very clear.