During this week’s integrated arts inputs, we focus on dance and drama. I found both inputs to be enjoyable and extremely engaging. Similarly, to the visual arts and music I feel that each input within this module is enhancing my self-esteem, capacity and knowledge within all aspect that underpin the integrated arts education. The initial … Continue reading Dance and Drama 24/10/2017
During this week’s integrated arts inputs, we focus on dance and drama. I found both inputs to be enjoyable and extremely engaging. Similarly, to the visual arts and music I feel that each input within this module is enhancing my self-esteem, capacity and knowledge within all aspect that underpin the integrated arts education.
The initial input was dance, this was our second dance input, during the previous week we produced a group dance using the ten principles of creative dance. According to Cone (2009) creative dance for children should be fun, safe, meaningful and most salient creative dance should be a child led activity. It is paramount when teaching children dance to demonstrate the movements, that the children are to incorporate within their routines (making reference to ten principles of creative dance), likewise ensuring that their creative ideas are kept within reason of the learning intention and success criteria. Over the past two weeks of dance I have been able to reflect upon why I should embrace dance as a perspective teacher. Creative dancing provides children with a wealth of opportunities;
• A sense of empowerment and achieving
• Improves physical and mental wellbeing
• Acquiring communication skills and cooperative working with peers
• Increases self-assurance which can be transferable across the curriculum
• Creative dancing enables children to bring their ideas to life and express themselves in a diverse way, rather than the usual teaching conventions.
The principle objective of the dance input was to consolidate and build upon our dance routines from the previous week by using a variety of dance related techniques, we initially practise our routines in order to refresh our minds. Bloomfield (2000, p.49) denotes this method of creative dance as “pure dance”. “Pure dance” emerges solely from the “rhythmic, spatial and dynamic structures of movement” (Bloomfield, 2000, p,49). They are notional in essence and the children’s knowledge of their routine is constructed on their individual capacity to acquire the basic movements of dance (Bloomfield, 2000). Once we improved the fluency of our group dance, we came together with the rest of the class and together we created a further 10 movements (0-9), after we established these movements we went back to our original groups and used one of our phone numbers to create additional sequence to our routine, within the primary setting an interdisciplinary approach can be deployed, for instance I could give each group 11 maths question that they children have to answer in order to find their 11 movements. Again, we refined our routines with the additional movements, also furthering the routines with adding effects such as cannonball, changing place and a beginning/ end. Similarly, the lecture gave each group a different picture (relating to Halloween) when then created a movement for our pictures and can together as a class. We then combined each movement that where inspired from the pictures, this is the beginning sequence of every groups routine. Bloomfield (2000, p57) sums up what we have learnt during the dance inputs nicely; “preparatory experiences when children experiment and build upon their short sequences and phases from which they gain their experience from creating a complete dance. So far, I have found the dance input to be rather stimulating, before the input I did not particular like dancing, but I have gained self-confidence and empowerment by creating dances and performing in front of peers. I feel I have acquired enough understanding to implement creative dance within a primary setting.
The second input was drama, the nucleus was ‘Falling into Stories’. This method of drama is employed by the teacher using a story as stimuli and is when the children think about the story by using drama to create a response to the scenes that occur within in the story. This is language in action using drama. Bloomfield (2000, p.39) establishes the important of the written text “is the representation of a performed work and may be a detailed published text specially written for children, an overview scenario put together by the teacher or children”. When teaching drama, it is vital to bear in mind the subject of drama is fluid and there is no complete lesson plan, as a teacher it is rightly to create a beginning and an end, the middle part of the drama is unknown, there is where the children have the freedom to create their own drama. What I gathered from this input is drama can be anything, as long as the teacher follows the drama convention to lead the learning. During the input we explored the children’s story ‘The Tunnel’ by Anthony Browne, which is about an unfriendly relationship between a brother and sister with very different characters, but a significant event happens and at the end the brother and sister appreciate their relationship. We looked at different drama convention we can use;
• Freeze frame
• Though tunnel
• Hot seat
• Teacher in Role
• Vox pop
• Role on the wall
• Thought track
• Voice in head
Initially the lecturer read the first few pages of the story, we then paused and in groups we considered the two main characters, by using the role on the wall convention of drama teaching. Booth (2005) denotes the role on the wall as the use of a human outline on paper to allow individuals to write and respond to the qualities of the character, during the workshop we use the outer line to record initial thoughts on the character, and at the end the inner outline to record thoughts on the characters at the end of the story/ drama. Booth (2005, p.43) establishes role on the wall as a representation of “collective understanding of the character life and attitude as it develops through the drama”. Likewise, we were introduced to voice in the head, Mason (2008) implies this convention is when characters speak aloud their thoughts and feeling, while the drama scene is a freeze frame. The group in which I was working with we focused on the scene when the brother is about to enter the tunnel the with his friends and he bothering and badgering his sister to join in the fun. During the workshop we only explored a few examples of drama convention and the relation drama can have with stories, it is important as a perspective teacher also as a student teacher to be engaging with children literature, as there are many advantages to this as the children have the ability to explore the story more fully and is a great method of understanding the views of the children in relation to the story and principle characters. Similarly, there are many opportunities to use drama and literacy to create a cross- curricular approaches to learning.
Like any week throughout this module I believe I am developing in confidence, self-esteem but also resilience. I am doing activities I never thought I was cable of completing, for instance acting and dancing in front of peers. This module is building me up to be a more confident individual overall, the confidence and self-assurance I have gained is transferrable to all module and my teaching practise. At times throughout this module I have been definitely been pushed out and beyond my comfort zone, it is a feeling I have never experienced before, but is placing in the perspective of some pupils I will be teaching who may not have the confidence to perform in front of an audience, it is important to be understanding and empathises with pupils, and make adaption to the lessons in order for all pupils to be included in some way.
Bloomfield, A. (2000) Teaching Integrated Arts in the Primary School. Oxon: David Fulton
Booth, D (2005) Story Drama: Creating Stories Through Role Play, Improvising, Reading aloud, 2nd ed. Canada: Stenhouse Publishers
Mason, J (2008) Practical Drama for Schools (Level 2- Upper Primary). NS: PACE Theater Company
Cone (2009). Following their Lead: Supporting Children’s Ideas for Creating Dance. [online] Available: http://moodle.uws.ac.uk/pluginfile.php/109357/mod_resource/content/1/Purcell%20Cone%20%282011%29.pdf. [Accessed: 15 October 2017]