Especially for new teachers, a sense of having a ‘competence crisis’ can take over as you adjust to the fast-paced, high-pressured, demanding world of education. Here are some creative, low to no-prep activities to lift your spirits and keep you smiling through to Christmas and beyond!Read More
If we want children to grow up to believe they can do anything and that they are not confined to certain activities which fit within gendered stereotypes, then we need to start changing how we talk about subjects like dance. Instead of worrying about the preconceptions of dance, let's take a look at some of the incredible benefits participating in dance can have for young boys.Read More
This year we have developed a series of complimentary CPD sessions for primary school teachers. Each workshop guides teachers through a series of tools and techniques they can apply in their own classrooms. Throughout the sessions we invite teachers to ask questions, to share their practise and experience. There are a few common questions that teachers ask about running their own performing arts lessons in their class.Read More
In Part 3 of our Guide to Teaching Shakespeare, we look at getting children up on their feet and performing the bard’s work. From character statues to character creation, here are some exercises and activities that you can use in the classroom, differentiated for different ages.Read More
You’ve told, read, re-read and re-told your story. Everyone knows what’s happening. (Finally!) Great.
Safe with an understanding of the overall story from a narrative version, it’s time to transfer your students’ knowledge to a script version and discover how Shakespeare really brought his stories to life.Read More
Our advice when it comes to teaching Shakespeare in primary schools is to tell a story, break it down and get physical with it to bring the drama to life. In this blog series, we break down each of these points in turn to provide ideas and suggestions for how you can deliver them in our own classroom. To get us started, Part 1 focuses on telling the story.Read More
How do I teach a five year old to get inside the head of a character?
How do I get a class of children to think about their physicality and use that to present a different emotion/mood/age
How can I encourage them to speak clearly?
Full disclosure: There is no one, immediate answer to any of these questions. Instead, there are different components of drama which can be combined, structured and explored accordingly, session-by-session, to aid your students in creating the answers themselves. Plus, it’s super fun!Read More
Ease yourself into drama teaching by making it a regular part of your usual classroom activity first - and not an individual session at all.
Find or create appropriate opportunities in your day where you can spend approximately 20 minutes utilising drama activities in the classroom. This introduces a new concept to a class, gauges their likes and dislikes, and steadily builds your own confidence in delivery.Read More
As with anything new, give yourself time to research, understand and prepare before jumping into your first drama session. My three instructions to you:
All the world’s a stage… including your classroom! Do you know your up stage from your down stage? Your Shakespeare from your Stanivlaski? No matter where your drama knowledge is at, this blog series will guide you on your way to delivering your best drama sessions! In Part 1 we discuss why teach drama, plus there’s a handy resource pack of drama games for you to download!Read More
Welcome to Part 5 of the West End in Schools Guide to Teaching Dance. So far we’ve covered why we should teach dance at all, the 5 simple steps for how to teach dance, the process for creating choreography with your students, and lastly the choreographic devices that will help you and your students create. This final piece is all about tips for actually delivering a session.Read More
After going through the process of creating dance in Part 3 it’s time to talk about choreographic devices. Choreographic devices are the tools we use to manipulate movement in order to enhance, exaggerate and embody actions. They’re a great way to give a class or a group of children ownership over their dance. Here we have 11 devices, some which are more suitable for EYFS and KS1, and some for KS2.Read More
Been teaching pre-set dances for a while now? Rinsed your repertoire? Is your class itching to create something of their own? Are you?! Then let’s do it. Let’s create. Let’s choreograph. (It’s easier than you might think.)Read More
Welcome to Part 2 of our Guide to Teaching Dance! In Part 1 we discussed the benefits of teaching dance in the first place. Here in Part 2 I’m going to talk all about how to teach dance. A good way to approach this is through 5 simple steps…Read More
Are you a dancing queen? Can you conga round the classroom? Are you a master of mambo? Two-step or tango?! Whatever your style, or potential lack thereof - do not fear! In this blog series we’re going to cover all the steps that will help you deliver dance in your school to the very best of your ability.Read More