10 Reasons Your Kids Should Do Drama

24th March, 2019

child in role in Schamozzle Drama Class
Child in role as an original gaming character.

1. Gain Confidence

Drama is not just for outgoing kids who love to act. In a process drama class everyone is equal and there are structured opportunities for everyone to share their ideas. There is no stress about learning lines because the stories are decided together and improvised. No one needs to feel embarrassed performing in front of others because everyone, including the teacher, is taking on roles together and sharing in the storytelling experience. We have great success helping to build self esteem in our shy, quiet and anxious kids.

2. Develop Creativity

Drama is all about using our imaginations and developing creativity. Our classes encourage kids to see the world in different ways, to generate ideas and to be original. We learn that there is no one way to solve a problem. Drama encourages innovation and thinking outside the box.

3. Understand Other Perspectives

Drama encourages empathy. By taking on different roles, we learn to see other points of view.  Children experience and feel a situation from another perspective by  walking in their shoes. Drama helps to develop compassion and kindness. At Schamozzle, we reckon some of our political leaders could benefit from a course in drama!

4. Inclusive and Non Competitive

Our classes are inclusive and non competitive. There are no starring or minor roles. Everyone’s talents and strengths are required to imagine the story and bring it to life. You don’t need to be good at reading, remembering, writing or learning lines because the drama is improvised not scripted. The content and dramatic processes each week are carefully planned by the teacher but every drama is unique. We never know how the stories will develop, what choices the children will make or what characters will emerge. Everyone contributes and the decision making is shared.

5. Understand and Solve Problems

In drama, children learn to understand and analyse a problem. Dilemmas, challenges and conflicts are introduced into the stories by the teacher. We work together to generate ideas. We examine situations and think critically about them. Drama encourages flexibility, thinking on our feet and innovation.

6. Be Co-operative and Work Effectively with Others

Drama is a group activity. It requires co-operation and group decision making. Negotiation, respect and teamwork are integral. For the drama to work, everyone must follow a group plan. We learn to value others, receive praise and accept constructive feedback. We learn methods to resolve conflict and that we don’t always get our own way, We learn that for a group to be effective, sometimes individuals must compromise and adapt.

7. Become Effective Communicators

In drama, children learn to communicate more effectively through voice, body and face. By speaking and acting in role, language and presentation skills are improved. Children learn about vocal projection, articulation, fluency, tone, persuasive speech and expression. They learn and use new vocabulary and to use voice and language expressively and in different contexts for different purposes.

8. Understand and Express Feelings

Kids can explore and express their own emotions and concerns through the characters and stories we create. The stories may seem simple or fantastical but the ideas can be related back to universal themes, issues and dilemmas.

9. Improve Listening, Observation & Concentration

The practise of extended improvisation helps develop sustained concentration. During planning meetings children take turns to listen to each other’s ideas.  Children learn to concentrate and follow a group plan.

10. Have Fun

When everyone suspends belief and is fully immersed in role in a shared, imaginary world, drama can be powerful, exciting and fun. Every week we laugh, play and smile. Children make friends. Participating in drama is joyful. It can help release stress, improve motivation and increase our sense of well being and belonging.

 

 

10 Things to do with Kids in Melbourne’s Inner West these Summer Holidays

 

7th December, 2018

Holidays have barely started. Are your kids driving you bonkers already? Here’s Schamozzle’s list of 10 creative things to do that’ll get them off the playstation and out exploring their neighbourhood.

1.  Get Something Fixed at the Melbourne Repair Cafe

On the 2nd Sunday of every month between 10am-1pm, the Inner West Melbourne Repair Cafe sets up shop at the Yarraville Community Centre 59 Francis St, Yarraville. How ’bout doing a sort out of the kids’ toys. Find something that needs fixing and bring it along. The Repair Cafe is staffed by volunteers. If there’s something you have in good condition you can bring that along to the Repair cafe to give away too. 

2. Draw or Photograph an Icon of the West

Grab your camera, mobile or sketch pad and pencils and head to an icon of the west to make some art. Here are my suggestions:
• The Heavenly Queen & Temple at 20 Joseph Rd, Footscay along the Maribyrnong River. She’s the giant golden statue of Mazu Queen of the Sea. You can’t miss her as you look out your window on the train home from the city. 
• The beautiful art deco Sun Theatre 8 Ballarat St, Yarraville is a great subject to draw or photograph and you can comfortably sit in the Yarraville pop up park with plenty of snacks options nearby.
• The Westgate Bridge from beneath or nearby.  There are great views and walks along Stony Creek.

3. Check out an Amphitheatre

Investigate amphitheatres online. Check out the amphitheatre at Footscray Community Arts Centre. You could go for a stroll along the river afterwards.

4. Browse a Bookshop

Find a book at the Younger Sun bookshop. They hold weekly storytime sessions. Your kids might be inspired to write and publish their own story. I’ve used blurb to make kids books and photobooks and I really like them.

5. Prepare an Indian Feast

When my kids were in primary school we’d have an International Cuisine Day a couple of times a year. We’d choose a place and find out about it. We’d go on a hunt for music, table decorations, costumes. We’d plan a menu and visit a special International grocer and then cook up a feast. It was a big deal that took a couple of days in a holiday to plan and it’s making me exhausted just remembering it. But it was also a lot of fun. My favourite was Indian. I love the strip of Indian shops along Barkly St, Footscray and still make regular visits to my favourite supermarket Bahrat Traders. They have every spice, lentil and flour you can imagine as well as little copper bowls and other colourful, shiny things.

6. Enrol in a SciencePlay Class

SciencePlay are running science workshops at Footscray Community Arts Centre 45 Moreland St, Footscray over the holidays for 2-10 year olds. They involve dressing up, making mess and doing experiments and look like they’ll be fun. Bookings here

7. Head to the Aeroplane Park in Braybrook

The aeroplane park 141 Churchill Ave, Braybrook used to be my favourite park when my kids were little. Then there was a fire and the aeroplane was destroyed. But now there’s a new awesome aeroplane, I reckon your kids will love it. Read about it here.

8. Check out the Exhibition at Phoenix Arts Gallery

The Our Story art exhibition is being held at Phoenix Art Gallery 72 Buckley St, Footscray. The artworks are by young people who are experiencing or have experienced homelessness. 

9. Plant Something

Give the kids a little patch or pot in the garden to plant some herbs, veggies or flowers. Or make a terrarium. Or pay a visit to a plant shop and choose some indoor plants to care for. There’s lots of inspiration and healthy indoor plants at one of my favourite local shops mosey 97 Anderson St, Yarraville.

10. Write a Story or Comic 

100 Story Building 92 Nicholson St, Footscray run literacy workshops throughout the year. They have a bunch of awesome sounding classes over these summer hols. Bookings here 

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