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Role of a Theatre in Education

With the constant guidance and support of HRDC DPSS, having persistent encouragement of our respected Principal ma’am, Mrs. Surjeet Khanna, a webinar on the “The role of a Theatre in Education” was conducted on 23rdApril,2021 in order to enhance the learning skills of our faculty members and the students too.

During the webinar, Ms. Hobbs initially threw some light upon the types of TIE (Theatre in Education) & its utilization during the classes. One type, Active wherein the students indulge in the discussions directly and the other type, Passive, where students become the viewers who just observe silently and may discuss on the topic later.

Ms. Hobbs also edified us on how Vocal Health both for students and teachers play a dominant role in the teaching learning process. We all should warm up our voice every morning with some light stretching of facial muscles and humming, keeping ourselves hydrated, finding our natural speech pitch and by performing few breathing exercises too. She emphasized on the part of non-verbal communication that exists while delivering a lesson which enables one to keep a check on the volume level, the pauses between the speech and the control over the breath while speaking.

Creativity & Experiential learning was another prime topic which was talked through at length. The speakers laid much emphasis on engaging students in hands-on experiences and reflection. She stated that this way, students are better able to connect theories and knowledge learned in classroom to the real-world situations.  The facilitator also touched upon several techniques to achieve confidence and self-esteem. She supported the notion that to always accept and welcome the responses positively and ensure that there is never a wrong answer. The tutor must acknowledge the contribution of every child and never make any child feel belittled.

We can include useful games and exercises which increase teamwork, focus, listening skills, enunciation with fun like making large letters (asking students to make capital letters in class by standing in line and without making any noise), tongue twisters etc. These games help the students to see things from a different perspective and build confidence in them.

The session concluded with summarizing the benefits of using theatre in education, ways to use it, ways to help teachers and students in their creativity and experiential learning. I found that the session focused on both physical and mental state of the students in the classroom to enhance learning, making it more fun and consequently more memorable. Its about giving and gaining a fully rounded education. In line with the speaker, I would like to incorporate the learnings from the session to bring about a holistic change in the methods of teaching.