Sunday, May 24, 2015

Drama is well-placed as a means to highlight and explore bullying issues, giving pupils the opportunity to try out anti-bullying strategies for themselves. Below are two such approaches, suitable for Key Stage 2 children (from seven to eleven year-olds). These are edited excerpts from the book Learning Through Drama in the Primary Years by David Farmer.

How does bullying start?

Flashbacks and Flash-Forwards

Using flashbacks or flash forwards creates a context – it shows what led up to a particular moment, how it might be resolved or how it might develop. A setting is given, such as a playground or classroom. Pupils are asked to think of still images related to bullying. The group stands in a circle and one by one participants step in and make a still image as part of a developing tableau. Nothing is pre-planned. When sufficient characters have been added, thought tracking can be used to establish a little more about the characters.

bullying-tableau

Explain that when you clap your hands, you would like the students to move silently in slow motion to where they think their character would have been a few moments before. Again they are thought-tracked. Now return them to the present moment and then flash forwards to show what might happen next. Using this technique you have created an episode with a beginning, middle and end and can develop it in any number of ways. This can lead onto discussion, hot-seating, role-play and writing.

Gathering opinions about bullying

Where Do You Stand?

This activity enables pupils to explore their own opinions and understand how others feel about bullying. Set up two chairs with “Agree” and “Disagree” signs. Read out one statement at a time and ask the children to place themselves according to what they believe, stressing that there is not always a “right” answer. Pupils standing near each other can discuss their decisions and random students can be picked out to explain why they have chosen their particular location. Following this, children can change position if they have formed a new opinion.

Suitable statements include:

  • It’s best to keep it a secret if you are bullied.
  • If you see somebody in trouble you should try to stop the bullies.
  • It’s OK to call someone a name if you are only joking.
  • It’s better to tell a friend about bullying than to tell the teacher.
  • If you ignore bullies they will go away.
  • Anyone can be a bully.

Primary Drama Across The Curriculum - June 2015

Wednesday 10th June 2015
10:30am - 4:30pm at Toynbee Studios, 28 Commercial Street, London E1
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peacock-sm

This one-day drama INSET course with David Farmer immerses you in activities and ideas which you can take back and use immediately in the primary school classroom or drama club. The drama strategies can be used across the curriculum and are designed to meet statutory drama and literacy objectives.

Developing Directing Skills (Sat 1 & Sun 2 August, London)

Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd August 2015
10:30am - 4:30pm at Toynbee Studios, 28 Commercial Street, London E1
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dev-direct

This two-day lively and inspirational drama course with David Farmer gives participants the opportunity to examine the role of the director through practical games and exercises. 'A fun, challenging and informative introduction to the world of directing' - participant.

'Informal and inspiring course for all wanting to gain confidence in directing or get new ideas on different techniques.' - Review by Teaching Drama Magazine.

Primary Drama Across The Curriculum - September 2015

Wednesday 30th September 2015
10:30am - 4:30pm at Toynbee Studios, 28 Commercial Street, London E1
>> Book Now >>

peacock-sm

This one-day drama INSET course with David Farmer immerses you in activities and ideas which you can take back and use immediately in the primary school classroom or drama club. The drama strategies can be used across the curriculum and are designed to meet statutory drama and literacy objectives.

Primary Drama for Writing - October 2015

Thursday 1st October 2015
10:30am - 4:30pm at Toynbee Studios, 28 Commercial Street, London E1
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drama-for-writing-150

This one-day drama INSET course with David Farmer focuses on games and activities for improving writing, as well as speaking and listening skills. These lively and engaging activities involve every child in the creative process and aim to stimulate and excite pupils' imaginations.

Directing Plays with Children (Manchester)

Wednesday 14th October 2015
10:00am - 4:00pm at Contact Theatre, Oxford Road, Manchester M15 6JA
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playful-workshop-150

This one-day drama CPD course with David Farmer explores a playful approach to directing. The day shows how drama games can be used to develop characters, extend acting skills and create imaginative stagings of scenes.

Primary Drama for Writing - November 2015

Wednesday 4th November 2015
10:00am - 4:00pm at Contact Theatre, Oxford Road, Manchester M15 6JA
>> Book Now >>

drama-for-writing-150

This one-day drama INSET course with David Farmer focuses on games and activities for improving writing, as well as speaking and listening skills. These lively and engaging activities involve every child in the creative process and aim to stimulate and excite pupils' imaginations.

Primary Drama Courses

Mini-Downloads

mini-download-miniA range of short downloadable resources providing guidelines, tips and information about a particular area of drama. They are ideal for planning and inspiration and can be downloaded to your computer in just a few minutes.

Augusto Boal | Commedia dell'Arte | The Gruffalo | Evacuees