Fourth Grade Drama
I will be the first to tell you that, as a general rule, I just don’t care for drama in fourth grade. But then I would have to clarify what I mean by that. After all, there is good drama and there is bad drama. I like good drama. It is the bad drama, the peer conflicts that permeate nearly every intermediate classroom in the world, that I dislike. This, unfortunately, is the type of behaviour that is being described when someone talks about “drama” within a school setting.
But there is a good kind of drama. It is the drama that I got to watch this afternoon. As part of our district’s fine arts program, my students are able to participate in six-week rotations in visual arts, music, dance, and, of course, drama. Our intermediate music teacher, who I’ve talked about before, is also our intermediate dance teacher and our intermediate drama teacher. So my students get to spend quite a large amount of time each year with her!
During the past several weeks, the students have been in the drama rotation. Working with their drama teacher, they have been learning about plays, reading and selecting scripts, and acting out those plays. Admittedly, with just six weeks, these are definitely not highly-polished stage productions with elaborate sets, costumes, and props. In fact, there were not sets, costumes, props, or even a stage. (At least, not a traditional stage.) But they were able to act out their plays in the drama room.
To make it more interesting, it was decided that my class would perform their plays for the other fourth grade class and vice versa. This meant that nearly our entire afternoon today was spent in drama. It was really fun watching the dozen or so plays that the fourth graders learned and performed this quarter! They all did a great job, both as actors and as audience members. And, of course, a huge thank you to our amazing music/dance/drama teacher for making it all possible!