Saying Goodbye

Sometimes I think that I am the worst procrastinator in the world. And then I realize that most of my problems come from the decision to go home for a weekend. And then my Mother spends all of her free time ensuring that I can’t do my homework at my desired time. Not because I have chores to do, or things to help out with around the house, oh no. It’s like “come spend time with me right now, I miss you!” or “it is time for me to bring a dog up to your room and text you over and over and over again so you are distracted. But I have gotten this time to myself, so it is time for me to write up my final reflection on my practicum experience.

Teaching drama has always been my favourite thing in the world. I admit that I got a little emotional after teaching the students at my practicum, missing all of my students I used to teach when I was in High School. I love how much fun we have, and that is a medium for surprise. Students you don’t expect, are loud and confident. So being able to teach drama on my last day in the schools for this year was, yeah, pretty amazing.

I did another basic drama warm-up with the students, and I was blown away by how much the students remembered. It was a review for those who were there last week, and also to catch up those who weren’t. From the knowledge I had of the students previous drama education, I knew that they had very little drama training, and mostly played games, like charades.

Getting the students to show me neutral, and do a roll down, and put their hands on their diaphragm. They accomplished every task I assigned with ease. And it really was apparent that they love drama – when we came into the class in the morning, they were all asking if we would be teaching drama again.

We let the students pick out of a hat the objects that they would be portraying in their scenes – things such as sunglasses, and shortbread, curtsy of the episode of Ghost Adventures that was playing on the T.V. when my practicum partner and I were making the papers. They then had to make both a tableau with the objects and a short scene playing the characters. We marked them based on a rubric that we gave to the students on the board so that they weren’t taken off guard by what we were reviewing.

Watching the scenes, I had so much fun, the students were energetic, they tried their best with an activity that they had never done before and they were awesome audience members.  There was one scene that I feel bad for ruining – one of the students made a joke that I thought was hilarious, and so I laughed so loud that they were thrown. My bad. They didn’t lost marks for that, though, because that was my fault.

When we told the students that we were leaving, there was much sadness, and many high fives. I am sad to be done our practicum, but I think that it was definitely a remarkable experience that I will never forget. 🙂

Sarah Kirschman

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The Basics of Drama

My second last practicum day consisted of one of my favourite things in the world to do: drama. I taught the students a basic lesson on drama that began with a warm up in which  I helped the students get into proper drama stance. They learned about how to breathe from their diaphragm, how to find a dristy point, how to project and how to do a proper roll down. Then, I gave the students the low down on the most important thing for me – neutral. That has always been one of my biggest problems with drama education because neutral is so perfect. It is excellent for gaining focus, it looks professional to have everyone begin and end a scene the same way, and it is a way to indicate to your group members that the scene is over if you are improving. And it is also super easy, the students picked up on it quickly.

The core of my lesson was to teach the students about tableaux and how to make a good tableau. The students caught on to the concept quickly, and I introduced the core concepts I wanted them to understand.
A tableau should:

  1. Be Simple
  2. Have Three Levels (Low, Medium, High)
  3. Be Able to be Held for Long Periods of Time
  4. Have Eyes Focused on a Dristy Point

I gave each group a scenario of conflict, and they had to represent the conflict through their positions. The exercise went really well, especially because each group made a simple mistake that I was able to use as a starting point to teach about other drama techniques. For example, one group had students facing away from the audience, so I was able to introduce blocking.

Next class we move on to absurdism, which I am so excited to teach! I’m also a little sad, because it is our last field placement.