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Topic outline

  • Description


    How do we start the theatre game? How do we play? And how by taking a few ideas for dramatic play we can come up with more activities?

    In this course we will look at some of the social benefits of theatre play and how 1 idea will spawn 10 other theatre play ideas!

    The cards come to your email by filling out the form at the end of the article.

    Play ideas for kindergarten and primary school children

    Many of the following are excerpts from our workshop, play and improv theatre, if you want to know more, you can watch it at your own pace taped and I'll answer any questions!

    Drama play can be summed up in 2 words. Expression and communication.  We don't play a play just to have fun and laugh!

    Playing a play means learning about myself and others. I am building relationships and gaining social skills that I will carry with me throughout life!

    Social skills and play acting

    Many studies emphasize that play is important for a child's social-emotional development. Age is not specified as there is no age limit and ideas for drama play are age-appropriate.

    Let's look at a list of social skills that a child acquires by playing drama games at home or at school.

    • Self-expression
    • Self-confidence
    • Cooperative relationships
    • Critical thinking skills
    • Respect for group rules

    Through theatre play we do not train children to become good actors, nor do we train them to go out on a stage and play a specific role, nor do we train them to recite a celebration poem.

    When we talk about theatre play, we are talking about the activity that will bring us together with others, teach us how to behave and create safe situations for us to play and move freely. 

  • 01_ Starting game

    The starter game  is a simple game to break the ice and create your first routines. Here, you can find the cards you will need and below we will list 10 different ways to play with it.







    • 02_Play sitting down

      We can play sitting down, without moving our feet. The animator calls out the cards or shows them one by one to the children and then the children have to do what they hear! Think about how we walk with our hands or jump around!

      • 03_Play standing

        The classic version of the game is to play standing up. Here the animator has the children in front of him. He can choose whether he wants the play to be static or in constant motion. At this point I change the cards at regular intervals and the whole group does the movements I say.

        • 04_Play in couples

          The first group is the couple. For a couple, the ideas for a play do not end, and so it is in this game! The whole group sits down and we let a couple do what the cards say. It is up to the animator if they want to achieve synchronization of the pair or just encourage the children to participate.

          • 05_Play as a team

            Now the animator has to focus on timing. We play like the previous routine where we were standing but now the whole team has to synchronize before we move the cards. A great idea for focus and attention.

            • 06_Change Character

              We wave hello, walk and jump differently! Use the cards to make other characters e.g. a lion, a wolf etc.

              • 07_Build a code

                Keep your favorite cards and make a code with 3 of the cards I give you. This is very easy to do with the whole pack of cards because you have 42 cards to choose from and you can pick a movement or character tailored to the age needs of the children.

                • 08_Set the scene

                  Try to build a scene according to the phases of the play. Take for example a postman who waves, jumps around and then stops in case someone is watching him. This idea will help you level up in the play and also help you use your imagination for play ideas.

                  • 09_Change the gestures

                    If you've done all that...change it! Try an elbow greeting, an elbow bow, or try the contactless greeting cards I've mentioned in a previous article.

                    • 10_Improvise

                      Now it's up to you to create new ideas for theatre play! You can ask the children what they do after a movement on the card and continue by creating new movements and different ways of expression! If you get to this point, you're well on your way!

                      • 11_Routine

                        Finally, let's talk about routine. Here you should have played several times with the children, so they should feel familiar with the game and you should have extracted all the ideas for a play they had! From now on this starter game will be what the English call the ice breaker and you will have it in your classroom every day to break out the group!