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1 Drama Techniques for the EFL Class Workshop by: Dr Maria Papapetrou Miller Nicosia 20/11/2013.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Drama Techniques for the EFL Class Workshop by: Dr Maria Papapetrou Miller Nicosia 20/11/2013."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Drama Techniques for the EFL Class Workshop by: Dr Maria Papapetrou Miller Nicosia 20/11/2013

2 Drama Techniques for the English Classroom is the title of the In Service training activity which I had the pleasure to attend in the summer 2011, from the 18th to the 29th of July. It was an activity proposed in the Comenius- Grundtvig Training Database and financed by the European Union. Classified as a type of “Training activity aimed at participants receiving”, it took place in Exeter, capital of Devon, at the International Projects Centre. 2

3 Photo of the Centre 3

4  Why did I choose this precise activity?  By choosing “Drama techniques for the English classroom” I aimed at contenting my desire to search for new ways of motivating my students and rendering my lessons more creative.  I really didn’t know what to expect, but I admit that I left Exeter absolutely fascinated.  Our instructor, Richard Clark, an actor and a teacher was a very skilled, pleasant person with a great sense of humour. 4

5  Why did I choose this precise activity?  For over ten days he introduced us from one activity to another in a way that inspired passion and made time pass in the most interesting, creative and educational way possible, leaving us all, I believe, totally content.  My wish is to share with you this delightful experience, as you are certainly here because we have similar targets. 5

6  The workshop will be divided in three parts:  First, a very short theoretical part,  Secondly, a longer practical part in which all of us will be invited to participate in order to animate the techniques I shall introduce to you.  Thirdly, whenever appropriate, I intend to show you videos of the works in Exeter, which will illustrate the practice. Only this way can you or anyone who did not participate in the eleven workshops imagine how far dramatization can lead us. Only this way can you or anyone who did not participate in the eleven workshops imagine how far dramatization can lead us. 6

7  The major aims of today’s workshop are:  Exploring the uses of drama as a classroom tool;  demonstrating the various skills learned through drama;  motivating and building confidence in students;  exploring social problems through drama;  increasing the participant’s fluency and confidence in spoken English;  Methodologically speaking it is a practical, experiential workshop with emphasis on active participation. 7

8 Nowadays we all have rather large groups of students. We are expected to keep them all preoccupied and ensure that each one of them gets actively involved in each of the activities carried out. Nowadays we all have rather large groups of students. We are expected to keep them all preoccupied and ensure that each one of them gets actively involved in each of the activities carried out. These would be:  drama activities aiming at opening the imagination and developing spontaneity,  or practical techniques such as storytelling, role play, simulation, pantomime, creative movement and improvisation,  or even techniques leading to the creation of a piece of theatre or a silent movie. 8

9  Why use drama techniques or theatre games in our teaching? (18 reasons) 1. Theatre games are a simple, cost-effective way of accomplishing a wide variety of educational goals, not just in theatre class… 2. The games are easy to integrate with content from other school subjects or content area. 3. The drama game or theatre game is a versatile teaching tool that reaches multiple learning styles, content areas, age groups, and levels of language and experience…. 9

10  Why use drama techniques or theatre games in our teaching? (18 reasons) 4. Drama education is a powerful teaching and learning tool with profound positive effects on a student’s cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development. 5. The benefits of regular theatre arts instruction spill over into all school subjects and everyday life. 6. Creative drama is sound pedagogy that reaches students of multiple intelligences and different learning styles. 10

11  Why use drama techniques or theatre games in our teaching? (18 reasons) 7. It is a multi-sensory mode of learning that engages mind, body, senses, and emotions to create personal connections to the material that improve comprehension and retention. 8. Drama games and theatre games are an ideal strategy for differentiated instruction. 9. Students with language difficulties, learning disabilities, or physical or mental disabilities can shine in drama, whereas they often struggle in traditional schooling. 11

12  Why use drama techniques or theatre games in our teaching? (18 reasons) 10. Gifted, talented, and highly motivated students who need to be challenged can demonstrate their abilities and synthesize learning in drama. From the shy to the confident, from the weak to the linguistically gifted, and from the inexperienced to the advance student, drama games include all levels of differentiated abilities in a positive successful creative experience. 11. Drama games and theatre games transform the traditional teacher-student relationship from one of authority-recipient to one of shared experience of discovery and creative exploration. 12

13  Why use drama techniques or theatre games in our teaching? (18 reasons) 12. It is easy to use drama as a teaching tool in any school subject. 13. It provides a practical, effective, and empowering approach to teaching that transforms the learning environment. 14. Each sense that is engaged provides an opportunity to remember the information and the experience. 15. Memory can be triggered from what the students saw, smelled, heard, touched, or tasted during the game – even if it was pretend or simulated. 13

14  Why use drama techniques or theatre games in our teaching? (18 reasons) 16. Each sensory input provides another opportunity to learn and retain the information. 17. The emotional involvement in drama activities promotes a deepening of understanding and improved retention of the information. 18. The emotional and energetic nature of drama provides a personal connection to the material – one that embeds it more firmly in the mind. 14

15 Our program in Exeter comprised, among others, drama techniques which could be classified as follows:  Energising,  Concentration,  Improvisation/Storytelling,  Group Awareness and Sensitivity,  Building Theatre/Drama/Directing,  Songs/Action Games. 15

16 I’ve made choices from each pack of drama techniques and I am going to propose to you to ACT OUT as many as the time allotted to us will allow. The majority of them will be short. However, I would like to introduce to you a few longer activities, ones that require more time (from a lesson to a term). You will find these in the Supplementary Materials pack, together with a Bibliography. 16

17 DRAMA PHILOSOPHY THE PHILOSOPHY BEHIND EACH ACTIVITY IS: NOT TO PRETEND, but TO BELIEVE IN YOUR ACTING VIDEO 5428 VIDEO

18  ENERGISING ACTIVITIES  Budge: Five in a group - four stand on the points of a square and one in the middle – object of game is the middle person to get onto one of the points. Point players can change places – but they must send a visual or aural message to one of the others before they move – otherwise everyone just runs to the same place making it easy for the guy in the middle! Try to do it fast! It’s quite exhausting so don’t let it go on too long! 18

19  ENERGISING ACTIVITIES  Point Anyone who has….: Sit on chairs in a circle, one standing in the middle. The person in the centre calls out “or Anyone who likes… or Anyone who has…” (e.g. likes chocolate, has black underwear on, has two brothers/sisters, speaks three languages etc.). Those people then change seats… but you cannot return to a chair you have just vacated. 19

20  ENERGISING ACTIVITIES  You know Mrs Jones: An action game –like “I sent my love to market and she bought…”, with each student adding to the list and telling the rest the contents of the basket. Here though it is all action: Here though it is all action:  Do you know Mrs Jones?  Yes  She’s dead  How did she die?  Like this – then show an action plus you add all the actions that have gone before… 20

21  ENERGISING ACTIVITIES  Point Anyone who has….: Sit on chairs in a circle, one standing in the middle. The person in the centre calls out “or Anyone who likes… or Anyone who has…” (e.g. likes chocolate, has black underwear on, has two brothers/sisters, speaks three languages etc.). Those people then change seats… but you cannot return to a chair you have just vacated. 21

22  ENERGISING ACTIVITIES  The Wizz Hey!: An “Energising” activity for the younger classes is “Wizz Hey!”. It is meant to be a fast game to get a class up and in action. It has to be taught in sections and goes as follows: Wizz HeyWizz Hey  Demonstrate a round of wizz and practise before going on to:  Demonstrate a Hey and practise wizz and hey before going on to:  Demonstrate a ping and practise a round of pinging before going on to:  Play a round of wizz, Hey, Ping, and then explain the rules: 1. You cannot ping anyone on either side of you – that is a wizz 2. You cannot ping a ping – that is a hey 3. You are out if you go wrong, or hesitate but you cannot leave or sit down  Play it as fast as you dare! VIDEO

23  CONCENTRATION ACTIVITIES  Hello, Goodbye: You pass the word Hello round the circle one way and Goodbye the other – but get Hello going well before you introduce Goodbye.  Don’t forget to get the students to turn to the person they are speaking to – it helps to alert their neighbour to the word coming round. If you think that all sounds too easy try adding extra Hellos in and then extra Goodbyes! 23

24  CONCENTRATION ACTIVITIES  Japanese swords: A real drama activity that sets up tension, concentration and, best of all, anticipation. You need to sell the idea of your town recruiting some expert Samurai warriors – or adapt this if the idea of being warrior like is offensive.  First teach the “style” i.e. the peripheral vision, the need for a good sense of hearing, and then the “action” i.e. how to attack the barbarians. Then let everyone practise a bit. Explain that the people who are last back into the attack position will be out and they will have the opportunity to assess the rest and decide who is next to be out! 24

25  CONCENTRATION ACTIVITIES  Peter Brook’s Game for Actors: You need four players. Only one is “on”.  One person asks him simple Maths questions.  One person asks him simple personal questions  One person does simple movement for him to copy…  The player who is “on” MUST answer all the questions, and keep the movement going all at the same time! Don’t stop, be insistent, don’t be polite, keep your questions out in front, and don’t wait for anybody else. The object of the game is for the “actor” to handle all the questions and the movement at the same time. The object is to be able to multi-task!!! 25

26  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  The Sand and Castle Game: Four players –each player in the game is to play an “Attitude” towards the other three players – (a different attitude for each) and not tell of the decisions they have made.  They then carry out an improvisation, e.g. building a sand castle – and play out their attitudes. We initially played with the three attitudes, like Creative, Useless i.e. slow and irritating. i.e. Gets everything wrong – another attitude might be Bossy!   Practice with Document « Attitudes » 26

27  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  Presents: It is carried out in pairs.  A. mimes giving a present to B. It can be as large or as small as they like. B MUST tell A what the present is - this seems the wrong way round but it's not!  The game is the more interesting if the present isn't straightforward. Maybe B. doesn't want it, or accuses A. of having stolen it, or maybe thinks A. has a personal grudge against them or whatever. What the game usually proves is that you don't have to think about what to say - the dialogue writes itself. 27

28  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  The Good News and the Bad News:  Each person in the circle contributes one line of a story – but alternately each starts person should start with either.  The good News is…. or The Bad news is… – The idea is NOT to cancel out what the person before you has just said – but rather to continue the story a little – not always as easy as it sounds. 28

29  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  True or false: Each member of the group tells the rest about something that has happened to them – but is it true or false? Let the group decide!  Picture Stories: Get your students to make a still picture with no dialogue – adding one person at a time – This could be done in small or large groups. Get one student to imagine what is happening in the picture and “tell the story”. 29

30  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  A variation might be: In small groups. Each group makes up a still picture of an “incident”. They then show this picture to another group who must act out the circumstances that led up to the still picture, their improvisation stops when they reach the picture moment. This time they should use dialogue.  Scenes at school to develop: Students caught cheating; using a mobile; bullying; old lady on a bus – student doesn’t give up his/her seat; students set on a fire alarm; smoking; breaching the safety rules; stealing; internet porno, etc. 30

31  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  Making up a scenario from a Photo: (photos taken from a source such as Fotosearch web- site) is stimulating due to the power of the photos. The success of the activity obviously depends on the choice of the photo.  This is how it goes: The class are all given the same photo. Students decide Where/When/Who/Why/How….  They identify (individually or in groups).  They speak up and state the Place, the Time, the Reason.  They take up time to amplify/develop their scene  They present it/act it out.  We are interested in each person’s or group’s previous story (before the action freezes, BUT also we need a Follow up. They must provide an ending too. 31

32  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  Making up a scenario from a Photo:  In our workshop in Exeter our photo was of a group of children on a bus – they imagine they are one of the children in the picture and to decide - as a group - what the children are watching.  Then ask them to take on that person’s emotions and feelings reflecting what they can see from the window – we arranged the chairs into the shape of seats on the bus and placed the ‘actors’.  Ask the students for vocabulary words to describe what they are watching - e.g. disgusting – amazing – horrible etc. Then ask them to each say a short speech to us as that person explaining their thoughts. See File: « Fotosearch » 32

33  IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING  Compound Stimulus – or "Sherlock Holmes" how to "read" a Character from objects:  You are given a list of objects found in a bag belonging to BEN. From the list you have to work out Ben's "back-story" - other lists are lists made for Doug and Paul. Groups of students can set up « Committees »… (see Supplementary Materials) (see Supplementary Materials) 33

34 IMPROVISATION /STORYTELLING Illustration: The BOAT VIDEO

35  GROUP AWARENESS – SENSITIVITY ACTIVITIES  Building Structures: In TEAMS make Letters, Numbers, Objects or Buildings (e.g.: Church, Fountain, Cuckoo Clock, Motor-bike, Helicopter)– you MUST USE everyone in the group don’t be afraid to use different levels, lift people, stand on chairs, lie on the floor etc.  We made a ???? VIDEOs VIDEOs

36  GROUP AWARENESS – SENSITIVITY ACTIVITIES  Equi-distant triangles: Keep the space between the three of you equal at all times keep moving/adjusting until completed.  Special Place: In pairs – tell your partner about your "special place" – they then have to tell us as if the place was theirs – taking on that special quality you have given it. 36

37  GROUP AWARENESS – SENSITIVITY ACTIVITIES  Passing the bird/Reading a letter: Begin by passing a crumpled up piece of paper around the circle telling the class that it is bird that has fallen out of its nest and cannot fly. Keep talking about the bird – look its beak is opening perhaps it's hungry, Its colour, size, the brightness of its eye, - try to build up belief by building up visual facts to hang on to. What you are testing is the students’ belief in the piece of paper becoming, for the moment, a bird. (i.e. suspending disbelief). VIDEO

38  GROUP AWARENESS – SENSITIVITY ACTIVITIES  Passing the bird/Reading a letter:  A variation on this exercise is to get two students to approach a bag in the centre of the room –they are bomb disposal experts and it has been suggested that the bag contains a device.  In the letter exercise the important thing is to "inform" the audience what information is in the letter e.g. your exam results, through your body and facial expressions – but don't OVER inform. VIDEO

39  GROUP AWARENESS – SENSITIVITY ACTIVITIES  Mirror exercises:  1. In a circle everyone copies you. Use simple actions and do them slowly. Send one person out –he/she has three guesses to see who the leader is.  2. Work in pairs swapping leadership between you without discussion - no one should be able to tell who is leading at any one time. 39

40  GROUP AWARENESS – SENSITIVITY ACTIVITIES  Park Bench: The first player sits silently on a "bench" displaying as much about their character as they can without verbalizing it.  The next player joins him and makes a strong complimenting character choice. (A complimenting character may be contrasting or supporting.) The player coming on should make strong character choices as soon as they are off their seat.  This means the character should be embodied in their walk, voice and intent. The two characters interact for about thirty seconds and the player that was on the bench first finds a reason to leave. This leaves the second player on the bench alone for a while. The next player creates a character and joins the player that is on the bench. This continues until all in the workshop have done one or more characters. 40

41  BUILDING THEATRE/DRAMA DIRECTING 1. Little Red Riding Hood 2. Synonyms or Alternative Vocabulary 3. A Christmas Carol 4. The supermarket shooting (see Supplementary Materials) (see Supplementary Materials) 41

42  SONGS/ACTION GAMES  Lula, lula, lula, lula lay….. VIDEOs VIDEOs (see Supplementary Materials for more songs) (see Supplementary Materials for more songs) 42

43  HOW TO MAKE A SILENT MOVIE  Choose a play  Create characters (i.e stereotypes)  Divide it into scenes and  In groups (of 5) ACT it OUT Illustration: Illustration: see VIDEOS , see VIDEOS , VIDEOS 5615, 5618 VIDEOS 5615,

44 THAT ’S ALL THANK YOU FOR COMING! 44


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