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NETworking Using Drama in the English Classroom,Nikelle Ebert. Nikelle Ebert is an Australian and has worked as a. NET at Christian Alliance Cheng Wing Gee College in. Tai Wai since August 2002 She has been developing, drama within the Oral English curriculum of the school. for four years, Nikelle believes that being creative and confident with. using English are very important She uses a wide, variety of drama techniques to develop these areas in. the students that she teaches in both the lower and. upper forms,Featured Strategies,Classroom Management Strategies.
Rubric for Assessment of Student,Performance,NETworking Using Drama in the English Classrooom. Why did you want to introduce drama in your school. Drama is a useful teaching tool as it offers ways of practising reading writing speaking and. listening in authentic contexts and provides students with the need to communicate Since I. had used drama effectively when teaching in Australia I felt sure that drama would also be. an effective teaching tool in my school in Hong Kong. How did you go about introducing drama to the school. The support of the Principal and the English Panel was very important We all agreed that. drama would benefit the students We looked at where drama would fit into the curriculum. and found that it complemented the Oral English programme To begin I tried to use drama. in regular English lessons but the teachers quickly realised that this was almost impossible. due to space constraints The,students now have their drama. sessions in a spacious dance and,drama room which makes it much. easier to organise drama activities,How do you maintain discipline in. drama classes,By keeping the students busy There, must be many fast paced constantly changing activities in each lesson to keep students.
It is also important to create an environment,with as few distractions as possible For. example the students take off their shoes,before entering the Drama Room so that they. can move about quietly They bring only a pen,and notebook with them to the lesson to take. notes and to do the writing tasks,Consequently the students are not burdened. with a lot of pieces of paper or materials which,would distract them from the lesson.
With classes typically consisting of 40 to 42,students it is important to be well prepared for. the lesson Since there is no textbook to follow,I need to have the lesson plan well fixed in my. mind I know exactly what is going to happen,NETworking Using Drama in the English Classroom. next It is so important to be clear about the sequence of the lesson plan especially when. you have to move the students around the room which I often do in drama classes. Maintaining good classroom discipline is crucial to the success of a drama lesson You have. to be clear about what you want the students to do and you have to be clear when giving. instructions,Also drama lessons can become noisy at. times This is good as you want the,students to communicate but the teacher.
has to be able to control the class I take,a whistle to class with me When I need to. call the students to order I blow the,whistle sharply to let the students know. they need to stop what they are doing and,pay attention It is a zero noise signal that. is useful in a noisy drama classroom,Finally I re arrange the groups that. students work in during the term so,students don t see the class as an.
opportunity to socialise with their friends,What about assessment. Drama activities must be assessed in order for students to take them seriously In Form 2. students are asked to present a short scene of my choice in a group of three as part of their. oral examination Before the assessment the students will be trained in body language. voice projection and movement and doing group work These are areas that will be. assessed Students are allowed to approach me for help with difficult words or ideas for the. presentation The simple rubric for assessment is shown on p 5. Besides using the rubric to assess their performance and to identify areas for improvement. the students will also receive oral feedback from me immediately afterward so they get a. general idea of how they performed, How do other teachers know how the students are progressing. Members of the English Panel and I regularly discuss student progress on a formal and. informal basis This discussion helps inform our teaching At the end of each semester. teachers receive a copy of the drama assessment marks The marks will contribute to the. oral English and overall English grades,NETworking Using Drama in the English Classrooom. Rubric for Assessing Performance in Drama,Excellent Good Average Below Poor. Assessment Criteria Average,1 Loud and clear voice.
2 Accuracy fluency and,intonation,3 Use of eye contact and. body language to promote,communicative,effectiveness. 4 Group collaboration,How has drama benefited the students. The most obvious change in the students is that they are less afraid to speak English. Around sixty percent of them will now speak to me in the corridor Students are now more. eager to ask questions and contribute in class, Drama does not produce results overnight Teachers should not expect immediate. improvement in students oral skills However over time students confidence in speaking. English will grow especially when they associate it with enjoyment and pleasure rather than. with passing an exam, Do you have any plans to further develop drama at school.
I would like to extend drama into Form 6 It will be helpful in preparing students for the A. Level exam and of course the new Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education The. purpose of the drama activities would not be to drill students for an examination but to teach. them to manipulate their voice posture and to communicate for different purposes I would. also incorporate voice techniques that are commonly used in debating into drama lessons. NETworking Using Drama in the English Classroom,Comments from the Principal Mr Kwok Kai Ming. We have been lucky that Nikelle is keen on implementing drama in the school It is a good. way to improve the students speaking skills and confidence The drama lessons in the lower. forms are very helpful in preparing students for the NSS electives. Comments from the English Panel Chair Mrs Choi Lai Mei. The teaching of drama complements the work of the English Panel well and really helps the. students strengthen their command of spoken English The students enjoy drama very. NETworking Using Drama in the English Classrooom,Stephen Cooley. Stephen Cooley is originally from the USA and has,worked as a NET in Hong Kong since 2000 He is the. NET at Chinese YMCA College a CMI school in Ma,On Shan in the New Territories He has used drama. as a medium for teaching English for most of the time. he has been a NET at the school,Stephen advocates drama as a good way to improve.
student confidence and speaking and listening skills. He uses drama in ways that will interest and involve. the whole class,Drama is a key element in the Creative Expression. classes which have replaced the old Oral English,Communication classes He has found that dramatic. performance of jazz chants is an excellent way for. students to become attuned to the rhythm of the,English language They also develop performance. skills During the time that he has been using jazz. chants and dramatic texts as a basis for Creative, Expression classes Stephen has co operated closely. and built good relationships with his colleagues on the. English Panel,Featured Strategies,Setting up a Drama Competition.
Creative Expression Lessons,Jazz Chants,NETworking Using Drama in the English Classroom. How do you use drama in the classroom, The creation of a Creative Expression programme at the school has been positive for. teachers and students Teachers are less tied to the textbook As a result a school based. curriculum that is more aligned to the needs abilities and interests of the students can be. developed The focus is on developing speaking and listening skills The students no longer. practice with static situational dialogues They are involved in making presentations They. now see Creative Expression lessons as a chance to be creative and to enjoy speaking. English rather than practicing English simply for the sake of having to do it. The school has been flexible in deploying me to make the Creative Expression lessons. work I teach a range of classes and year groups I work with each of the Form 1 and Form. 2 classes for 5 consecutive cycles in the first term and prepare them for English Week in the. second term The students prepare small scale dramatic presentations of fables and stories. I also see the Form 3 4 and 5 students throughout the year and work with them on dramatic. performances of more sophisticated poems short stories and songs. My colleagues are also involved in preparing the students and helping them to improve their. presentation skills and pronunciation I work with various classes to get them started and. then their class teachers take over and guide the students through the preparation and. Old Man Yu and the Mountains performed by Form 2 students. NETworking Using Drama in the English Classrooom,The students especially enjoy practising. for and competing in the Inter class,Drama Competition It gives them. something to aim for To prepare for this,competition each Form 1 and 2 class.
receives a drama script at the beginning,of September In past years I have used. the scripts from Carolyn Graham s Jazz,Chant Fairytales. The scripts are ideal for the following reasons,They incorporate rhythm and rhyme. It is possible to involve classes of 40 or more students since there are a lot of roles. narrators actors and chorus Everyone has a part to play. The more capable students play the role of the narrator actor. The less confident students are in the chorus, Students are taught to link sounds together for better pronunciation. Most of the stories are already familiar to the students. After choosing the scripts the rehearsal process begins It includes the following. 1 In Cycle 1 students read and listen to the scripts and start thinking about who will take. the narrating and acting roles, 2 In the next 4 5 cycles students rehearse the scripts from beginning to end during.
Creative Expression classes Narrators are required to read their lines smoothly Actors. and actresses must memorise their lines and learn to speak with feeling and for dramatic. effect The chorus also needs to be trained to speak loudly and clearly in unison and. with the right intonation This rehearsal process continues throughout the first term. 3 At the end of the first term a preliminary inter class competition is held Two or three. English teachers are selected as judges The judges visit each class once over a period. of one cycle Each class performs their drama for the judges The narrators and actors. perform at the front of the classroom while the chorus stays in their seats The judges. use a scoring rubric to assess each class on their English speaking skills and the. delivery of the piece Feedback is given to each class. NETworking Using Drama in the English Classroom, 4 After the judges have assessed each class they choose two winners one Form 1. and one Form 2 class These two classes then perform their pieces on stage in the. school hall during the English Week in February The EngIish teachers collaborate to. prepare the winning classes for the big performance day During this time the. students also work hard to prepare the props and costumes to enhance their. performance, 5 THE BIG DAY each drama piece typically lasts 10 to 15 minutes On stage the. members of the chorus are arranged on the choir stands and hold large cards. depicting the scenes For a performance of Rumpelstiltskin the cards had straw. drawn on one side and gold drawn on the other side When the chorus held up the. straw side you could see a large pile of straw when they flipped the cards over the. pile of straw instantly became a mound of gold The actors perform in front of the. chorus often interacting with them For example if a student in the role of a. messenger shouts The Queen the Queen where is the Queen everyone in the. chorus then points to the Queen The narrators stand at the front of the stage and off. to one side One narrator sometimes hits a tambourine to keep the chorus in rhythm. Some classes have used classical music and sound effects in the background to. enhance the action on stage, The Passionate Shepherd to His Love performed by Form 6 classes. What about dramatic activities with the older classes. A similar process is followed with the Form 3 classes The classes are given well known. children s poems for dramatisation These short performances last 2 to 3 minutes each. There is no preliminary inter class competition but each class performs on stage during. English Week after the Form 1 and 2 classes In 2006 2007 the dramatised poems included. The Owl and the Pussycat by Edward Lear Wynken Blynken and Nod by Eugene Field. The Adventures of Isabel by Ogden Nash and Jim who ran away from his nurse by. Hillaire Belloc,NETworking Using Drama in the English Classrooom. The Form 4 and 6 classes dramatised more sophisticated poems during the English Week. PART 1 DRAMA IN THE CLASSROOOM 2 NETworking Using Drama in the English Classroom 2 Nikelle Ebert Featured Strategies Classroom Management Strategies Rubric for Assessment of Student Performance Nikelle Ebert is an Australian and has worked as a NET at Christian Alliance Cheng Wing Gee College in Tai Wai since August 2002 She has been developing drama within the Oral English

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