Little angels tell the story of Christmas
Stars were shining brightly when Hartlepool youngsters took to the stage.
The children at Eldon Grove Academy impressed their families with their annual nativity shows.
Older youngsters staged their modern day take on the nativity, which told the amusing tale of Leo, the little star, who is given a big job to do by guiding the wise men and shepherds to Bethlehem.
The 124 pupils, aged five to seven, staged their show at St George’s Church, before a packed audience of parents, grandparents, carers and friends.
Assistant headteacher, Sharon Stephenson, said: “The children were rehearsing for six weeks and in that time had to learn all of their lines and nine new songs.
“As we study all religions in school it is nice to celebrate a Christian festival with a performance where all the children can take part and understand the importance of each aspect of the Christmas story.”
Taking on the starring role of Leo was seven-year-old Coben Falkingham, who opened the play with his star parents Kayden-Leigh Francis, six and Leon Murray, six.
The roles of Mary, Joseph and the donkey were played by Sophie Collins, six, Will Eddowes-Cahill, six and Thomas Wistow, six, supported by a cast of angels, shepherds, kings, animals, narrators and comedians.
Mrs Stephenson said: “Everyone put so much effort into the play making it really feel like the start of Christmas.”
The tiny tots in the school also staged their Yultide performance with the nursery and reception children putting on a production of Whoops a Daisy Angel, a clumsy but kind-hearted angel who is given the job of guiding the shepherds and the kings to the stable in Bethlehem where Jesus was born.
More than 70 pupils donned animal costumes, angel wings and shepherds robes to stage their play at the school.
Assistant headteacher, Claire Martindale, said: “All the children were really excited about performing in front of parents, grandparents, family and friends, some of them for the first time.
“As well as rehearsing the play itself they all had to learn six new songs which they sang beautifully.”
Taking on the lead roles of Mary and Joseph were pupils Ava Smith, four, and Samuel Bowsfield, four, with Niamh Brown, four, playing the donkey.
The title role of Whoops a Daisy Angel was played, over the two performances, by Sophia Weegram, four, and Gracie Dees, four.
Mrs Martindale said: “All the effort that was put in by staff and by parents, who helped to make the amazing costumes, was incredible.
“Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the performance.”