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The power of role play

Unit 7

16:57

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Overview

There are lots of exciting ways to get children involved in role play covered in this video, many of which can be easily integrated into lessons without becoming the sole focus. We’re shown how role play is used to teach children from an early age because it makes abstract ideas concrete for young learners - in a similar way to which maths use equipment and illustrations to grasp concepts in maths. This can be done using a variety of approaches, and Ruth Baker Leask walks us through options such as ‘overheard conversations’, ‘flashback, and ‘gossip’. We see how getting children to ‘gossip’ around a text, in this case The Wild Robot, can help them think carefully about characters’ thoughts and actions, and use inference to develop their conversations. Lots of exciting ways to get children involved in role play are covered in this video, many of which can be easily integrated into lessons - without becoming the sole focus. We’re shown how role play is used to teach children from an early age because it makes abstract ideas concrete for young learners - in a similar way to which equipment and illustrations can be used to help pupils make sense of maths. This can be done using a variety of approaches, and Ruth Baker Leask walks us through options such as ‘overheard conversations’, ‘flashback, and ‘gossip’. We see how getting children to ‘gossip’ around a text, in this case The Wild Robot, can help them think carefully about characters’ thoughts and actions, and use inference to develop their conversations. Lastly, there’s an overview of Mantle of the Expert and how this can play a significant role in developing children’s literacy. This includes suggestions for how children’s books might spark interesting topics, such as The First Drawing, which is used inspire a project in which pupils take on the role of paleontologists.

Course Materials:

Presentation Slides - Download

.pptx file

Training Handout - Download

.pdf file

Course Creator

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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