Thursday, 21 May 2015

Impromptu Drama Class

Today in my grade 4 class we started the lesson "Don't Run". It features phrases that revolve around rules, such as "don't run." , "don't swim here." , "don't eat here" ..etc.
We did the textbook listening and repeating, which always works pretty well for introduction class but then I found that the activity next looked a tad boring, so instead I told the students we were going to make some videos.

OH And if you have time in the beginning of your lesson (or end) - this is a cute little video (stop at about 3 mins) to demonstrate why we don't run in restaurants. Good for motivation.

OK, I wrote on the board - for our dramas, to guide us:
  1. Don't run
  2. Don't eat here
  3. Don't swim here
  4. Don't touch it
Then we quickly rummaged through the English prop bin and made some quick scenarios. The first, was 'Don't run'. So I told one student that they would be the runner and the other 2 (yes, I've only 3 in my class) to hold shopping bags (props) and when he runs by they must say "don't run!"

A small snapshot of our video:

It worked really well. Now, I know I've got a small class but don't let your bigger numbers stop you. If I choose to do this in a big class at my main school I would allocate a number - 1 to 4 - to pairs or threes in the class and tell them that they have to act out the scenario as each number would correspond to a 'don't sentence'. (See numbered sentences written earlier in this post).

You can do this with or without props! No biggy.

Then I would tell them to practice (Yon-Suip! -my bad Korean) and after a few minutes, I'd have volunteers to come up and perform. Or , like I've done many times - use the "random number generator" from this link. It lets you fill in the number range, push go and then it will show a random number on screen. I tell the students if their class/ attendance number is shown they must perform. (it's a fair way, and fun way to get more students involved and they always know their class number for some reason -very Korean school thing lol). 

Anyway, our next scenario was 'don't eat here' where we had some plastic food and one of the students said the line "Don't eat here!"

Don't swim here was hilarious as we quickly got our magnetic ocean and fish boards out, put them on the floor and one of the students attempted something that looked like swimming lol! While of course, the other 2 yelled "Don't swim here!"

And finally, we acted out, using a radio "don't touch it!"

Now, the important thing is the speaking and comprehension that takes place during these little performances - not the acting. So don't stress if their voices are a tad muffled, if their back is toward the audience, etc - it's a fun and quick acting opportunity and it's good to see how creative they can get with such short lines. 

I highly recommend these little acting activities for introduction classes! 

I am going to make a short video with what I have filmed and show the kids in our next class - this is optional, you don't have to film of course. But it will be a nice surprise for the kids to see and laugh at themselves ! hehe

Happy Teaching!


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