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Drama Days @ PH Zug: Learning to Teach Through Drama

09.08.2018
March 2018 saw the PH Zug welcome eight guest teachers specializing in the use of Drama in Education (DiE) in teacher training, for four days of talks and workshops.

March 2018 saw the PH Zug welcome eight guest teachers specializing in the use of Drama in Education (DiE) in teacher training, for four days of talks and workshops. These were open to PH Zug students and staff and to the general public. The Drama Days were organised by the PH Zug's Center for Oral Communication (Zentrum Mündlichkeit), with the support of the PH Zug International Office.

The Drama Days were a platform for an in depth discussion with specialists around best practice in integrating drama, music and arts education into teacher training. This discussion was facilitated through a series of talks and workshops by PH Zug staff and by the invited specialists.

Drama in Education (DiE) is an umbrella term for various teaching techniques, which use elements of theatre such as games and acting exercises in order to engage learners holistically in educational settings. Drama invites learners a) to connect emotionally with a topic, b) to engage in their own learning with and through their bodies (i.e. movement, sounds, etc.), and c) it challenges learners to make meaning in context and to understand a topic as it relates to their realities. According to DiE scholars Dawson and Lee, learning through drama engages students in «[...] academic, affective and aesthetic learning through dialogic meaning-making in all areas of the curriculum.» (Dawson & Lee, 2018).

DiE comes from the Anglo-Saxon tradition and has a long history particularly in the UK, where it has been a part of the teaching curriculum since the 1950s. As opposed to theatre in education (TiE), which is well established in the Swiss context, and which focuses on creating an aesthetic product (i.e. putting on a play), DiE focuses on the process of solving subject specific tasks through drama.

Topics of interest during the Drama Days included how to teach (and learn) rhythm and sight-reading in a playful manner, how language awareness and language development can be trained with DiE, and how to experience literature firsthand – from the children's book «Als die Raben noch bunt waren» to Schiller's classic «Kabale und Liebe».

The Drama Days kicked off with contributions from PH Zug staff with a colloquium and workshop by Eva Göksel and the workshop «Moving Music Theory» by Daniel Hildebrand. At the evening's kick-off event, PH Zug staff and the visiting specialists introduced themselves and their work. The next three days were filled with talks and workshops:

  • Exploring Emotions and Feelings with Drama – Egon Turecek & Erika Klonner, KPH Wien/Krems, Austria
  • Keep Calm and Do... Drama! – Elke Brys & Said Dnoub, Artevelde University College Ghent, Belgium
  • About Children and Phantasy Play! – Ann Steverlynck & Simon Wemel, Artevelde University College Ghent, Belgium
  • Structured Drama as the Means of Teaching Literature: Kabale und Liebe – Radka Svobodová, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
  • Gestalt Theatre – Drama as a Tool for the Personal & Social Development of Pre-Service Teachers – Tomáš Andrášik, Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic
  • Language Awareness and Language Development with «Drama in Education» as a Basic Teaching Method – Egon Turecek & Erika Klonner

The full Drama Days programme can be found online at: zm.phzg.ch. For more information please contact .

Reference:
Dawson, K., & Lee, B. K. (2018). Drama-based Pedagogy: Activating Learning Across the Curriculum. Intellect.

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