Neil Cave, a qualified drama and English teacher with 26 years teaching experience offered drama groups in 2019 in our After-School Program. Thank you Neil it is wonderful to have you with us in 2019.
The Drama Program was aimed at the Senior Primary section of Die Bron Primary School. Initially it was thought that the grades four to seven students could be part of one group, but this was soon changed to two sessions, one for the Grades 6 and 7 students, the second for the Grade 4 and 5 students, due to the numbers involved and because most of the learners were new to this kind of work.
The Grade 4 and 5 group was further split into two groups. An audition process was used to help split the group in a way that best served the needs of the individuals in the group and of the group as a whole. This audition took the form of a simple memory exercise in which a short story was told to the group and each learner was asked to recall and repeat the story on their own.
Neil mentored the Grade 6/7 group and one of the Grade 4/5 groups. The second Grade 4/5 session was facilitated by Regina.
The Program aimed to provide introductory sessions in basic drama skills, building capacity that would eventually see the students create and perform their own theater pieces. The opportunity was also there for the group to prepare short pieces of performance for events at the school as required. Most of the activities were centered around storytelling, both within a group and as individuals. All work was carried out in English and Afrikaans.
A special note must be made of the fact that one of the reasons for splitting the Grade 4 and 5 learners into two drama groups was to be better able to address the Language issues that existed. Some of the learners have very limited English and Afrikaans language skills and it was thought that some remedial effort could be made to help bridge the gap.
Each group had one session per week (grades six and seven on a Monday afternoon, grades four and five on a Wednesday afternoon); each session lasted between sixty and ninety minutes depending on the particular nature of the work and other demands on the group, or individuals within the group.
All the sessions took place at Die Bron Primary School, normally in a section of the school hall (or whatever space could be found if this space was not available).
The drama work was driven by the belief that creative engagement in imaginative drama and theater can help individuals build confidence, develop language skills, exercise their imagination and improve their ability to work as part of a collective.
The year ended with a wonderful performance for all the children at die Bron primary.
Thank you Neil …we wish you all the best for your new post and we will keep the drama spirit going……