Four Square is the action-packed tale about a young teen named Elizabeth and her fight to save the school library from closure. It’s going to take $50,000 to keep it open which means she’ll have to come up with something better than another bake sale. When she enters the Annual Four-Square Shoot-Out tournament, she’ll either win the $50,000 prize money or a trip to the emergency room! This play for teens teaches about staying true to yourself and remembering the importance of friends and family.
Quinn Baldwin has been a middle school English teacher and librarian for over 16 years. He is currently a middle school library media specialist. He lives in Oklahoma with his wife and two children. He has written several books including The Accidental Superheroes, Crossover, The Confessions of Justin Malone, and (Alleged) Teen Bank Robber which have captivated hundreds of pre-teens and teenagers alike and won the Page Turner Award on the Page 99 Project.
Excerpt from the play:
CAST OF CHARACTERS
YOUNG MR. TIGER
COMMERCIAL SPOKESPERSON #1
COMMERCIAL SPOKESPERSON #2
(CURTAIN opens on 1st ELIZABETH, JJ and JACKSON sitting in library, reading. MRS. SHARP, the librarian, works at her desk.)
(1st Elizabeth has all Elizabeth lines until Scene 7)
(Closes her book)
That book was so good.
Finished already? You just checked it out this morning.
I just couldn’t put it down, Jackson, this underdog story about a courageous rabbit.
A rabbit was an underdog?
He moved his whole family to another home.
He ran away? What kind of hero is that?
Some fights you just can’t win.
You coming with us to Conoco after school today? (Dreamily) Doritos…Skittles…Slim Jim’s…
I can’t. See you guys tomorrow.
(Grabs a book off the cart and walks toward Mrs. Sharp’s desk. TODD ENTERS, head bent over phone)
(TODD doesn’t look up and EXITS. Sighs)
Why don’t you just ask her, dude?
Ask her out! I can’t!!!
(EXITS with JACKSON)
(SOUND EFFECT: Phone rings. Answers phone)
Hello? (Pause) What?
(ELIZABETH looks up with alarm)
You can’t be serious. What about these kids? (Pause) No, it’s not okay! (Slams phone down, puts her face in hands and cries)
(Holds book out)
Can I check out a book?
While you still can, I guess.
What’s that supposed to mean?
They’re shutting down the library next semester. Every book will be sold.
Budget cuts. The State needs money for more fighter jets or something.
We have to do something!
You wouldn’t happen to have $50,000, would you? (Laughs deliriously through her tears)
(ELIZABETH holds out a tissue box, throws the box over her shoulder and drops her head to the desk. CURTAIN)
(SOUND EFFECT: School bell rings. DANIELLE, BENJAMIN, LESLIE & AMY ENTER on FRONT STAGE in front of closed curtain next to tree prop and commence playing four square. ELIZABETH ENTERS on other side of stage, reading. The ball bounces in her direction.)
Little help here!
(Points to herself)
No, First Lady Ivanka Trump! Yes, you!
Move it or lose it, honey!
(ELIZABETH picks up ball and attempts to hit it back but knocks over the tree. PLAYERS fall on ground, laughing)
You guys see that?
My dog can play four square better than her! And, he’s only got three legs!
(ELIZABETH EXITS, upset. PLAYERS, still laughing, EXIT)