Pavla Beier has worked closely with teachers and children in primary settings for almost 20 years, using participatory drama as a way in which to engage children in a topic in order to deepen and enrich their learning. Using a strong story as a starting point, she creates an inclusive environment with space for children to reflect and enquire; examining the inferred meanings within a story as well as the overarching themes. Pavla’s background is in performance, theatre in education and child development, with a BA (Hons) in Communication Arts: Drama Specialism and an MA in Childhood Studies. Schools can work with her in two ways:
- The Smartest Giant in Town Workshop, based on the book by Julia Donaldson
In the town in our story there are humans, animals who live as humans – they wear clothes, drive cars and can speak – and then there are giants. The giants can’t help but cause all kinds of destruction in the human-sized town (it’s not their fault that they can’t reach into the shops without breaking the tiny door frames) and the humans have no patience or sympathy for the giants’ predicament. How will they ever learn to live peacefully side by side?
In this practical session, the pupils take on the roles of the humans and the giants to support their understanding of their points of view. Facilitated by Pavla (also in role), the pupils work together to present their argument, as humans and giants, to the Mayor of the town. This workshop focuses on preconceptions and tolerance by listening to and interrogating different perspectives.
2. Stirring up a story: teacher CPD and support
This is an opportunity for teachers to create participatory lessons alongside a drama specialist, to bring a text / picture book to life with their pupils
Using a story book of your choice, work with Pavla, to explore the story’s characters, settings and themes and discover new ways for your class to connect with them.
Two teachers from the same year group (or same key stage if one form entry) work together with Pavla to weave drama into their next half term’s planning. The teachers then deliver the drama input themselves through carefully designed and structured lessons involving both facilitation and teacher-in-role.
For further information about either of these opportunities, please contact Pavla Beier by email: firstname.lastname@example.org