Stinky Frank

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5 characters. 3 M, 2 F. Approximately 7 minutes running time. Short play by Debra A. Cole about personal hygiene.

Personal hygiene is a tricky topic. Here is a cute play to use for assemblies to teach students about the importance of keeping their bodies and clothing clean.

Synopsis: Most kids know that good hygiene is just a part of growing up. Stinky Frank has missed the message. Can Mrs. Putnam help her students make cleanliness and hygiene first?

Includes discussion questions and director notes regarding casting, set and costumes.

Debra A. Cole is a celebrated humanities teacher, youth theatre director, and children’s playwright with degrees in journalism, art history, and elementary education. She understands the needs of young performers and their directors and creates pieces that encourage engaging discussion, creative thought, and quirky playfulness. Her goal is that young performers discover the power and delight that theatre brings to actors and audiences alike.

Visit her website:

Excerpt from the play:


STINKY FRANK — (M) hygiene is not a priority for this young man. Frank has no clue that he smells foul.
MRS. PUTNAM — (F) kind teacher who is trying to keep peace in her classroom
MARCY— (F) sweet student – tries to be kind to everyone
TANNER— (M) bully – doesn’t think about his words to others
TOOTS— (M) not so bright

(The action takes place in modern times in a 4th grade classroom.)

(Lights come up on a typical 4th grade classroom with the teacher Mrs. Putnam shuffling papers at her desk. The door suddenly slams open and four noisy students Frank, Marcy, Tanner and Toots come bouncing into class.)

(loudly) Settle down, class. Well, by the way you entered my classroom just now, you clearly had a fun time in P.E. today with Coach. What was it? (sarcastically) Dodgeball again?

It WAS dodgeball, Mrs. Putnam!


Of course, you LOVE dodgeball, Tanner. You LOVE hitting people with that horrible red ball.

(shocked) You don’t enjoy hitting people, do you Tanner?

(rolls eyes) No, Mrs. Putnam.

(innocently) But you DO love hitting people with the dodgeball, Tanner. That’s what you told me after giving me a welt yesterday. (rubbing leg as if still in pain)

(whispering to Toots) Shut it, Toots, or I’ll do it again tomorrow.

(Toots sits down sadly. Everyone follows.)

Enough, kiddos. Gym is over. It is time for Health.

Ew… I’ve heard about Health class. I feel a little sick. I think I have to go to the nurse.

Frank, Health class covers many topics: human relationships, nutrition, physical fitness, and… my favorite topic…

(interrupting) P.U… does anyone else smell that disgusting smell?

(Everyone starts sniffing.)

Something IS sort of… gross.

Toots, is it you? (sniffs toward Toots)

(stands up quickly) IT’S NOT ME, and stop calling me Toots. My name is Timothy. And besides that, I stopped tooting in second grade. (sits down quickly and toots) Oops… sorry. Beans for lunch.

Enough class. This is not kind.

But, Mrs. Putnam, there is a smell… a really bad smell.

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