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10 ways to understand narrative through drama

Unit 10


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This final session provides an essential list of ideas to apply to drama lessons that will support the teaching all of the strategies covered in this 10-part course. The first piece of advice is simply to go for it. It takes some practice, but used regularly drama will have an impact on learning. We consider the importance of space (a dedicated one if at all possible) and finding time for drama - even if it’s just for short, incidental activities. And at the heart of everything is the text; if you’re going to dig more deeply, then it must have sufficient depth. A certain amount of modelling is required in order for drama to be used successfully in English lessons. If you are going to use the technique of putting a character on trial, for example, then the children must first be shown how a courtroom works. While some activities will be planned, others will evolve organically, so it’s important never to miss an opportunity for drama. Being flexible will become easier too the more frequently children practise the different techniques and if there are clear rules and guidelines to follow. Lastly, drama in the classroom is something to be enjoyed and while you may feel uncertain to begin with, your confidence will grow.

Course Materials:

Presentation Slides - Download

.pptx file

Training Handout - Download

.pdf file

Course Creator

Image of Ruth Baker-Leask

Ruth Baker-Leask

Former headteacher Ruth is now an independent education advisor, supporting schools, trusts and other organisations across the UK. She is currently chair of the National Association of Advisors in English (NAAE), an associate consultant for the National Literacy Trust (NLT) and a member of The United Kingdom Literacy Association's (UKLA) awards and members committee.

About the Course

Ruth demonstrates a range of drama and role-play teaching approaches for Year 1-Year 6, showing how important drama is in connecting children to narrative by eliciting personal responses as well as supporting children in developing a deeper understanding of the relationships between characters, making inferences from their actions.

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