Life of Shinran Play


Grade Level: 6,7,8,High School, Young Adult, Adult

Keywords: Shinran Shonin, Jodo Shinshu, Japanese Buddhism


  • The students will be able to recall one fact from Shinran's Life


  • Three copies of the script. 2 cut up according to scene. 1 (uncut) for the narrator. (below)
  • A full copy of the script for all the students
  • Props (backgrounds) & costumes (black robe, okesa, ojuzu)
  • If you have lighting, use it. You can also use a powerpoint presentation to create background scenery.


  • Cut the sections of the play to give to each individual actor depending on scene
  • Need helpers to help with props and costume and to help the students prepare.
  • If desired, arrange for someone to record a video of the play
  • Make sufficient copies of the script for all students


  1. Ask the students what they know about Shinran? Write on board. Review. Ask for anything else.
  2. Present that we are going to do a skit based on Shinran Shonin's life.
  3. Ask for volunteers to read the parts. Have the helper give out the sections of the "script" and to help the students get ready.
  4. Prepare the audience for the sound effects that they need to do at times. Practice several times.
  5. Introduce the play
  6. Serve as the director to make sure that the actors for the next scene are ready. Once their scene is done, they may sit down.
  7. After the play, make sure that the audience applauds
  8. Review by passing out copies of the play, summarizing and asking what was memorable.


  • Review by asking at least a question to each person.


The Matsuwakamaro, Hannen, Shinran can be played by either one or 3 characters depending on the size of the class. The second version below is a shorter version


Mas Nishimura, San Jose Betsuin, 2010