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When drama in the classroom is a positive move

A unique partnership between Murray Arts, Hothouse Theatre and Sydney Theatre Company is set to bring drama into the classroom – and it’s a positive move.

Sydney Theatre company’s School Drama (TM) program that partners primary school teachers with a Teaching Artist- a professional performing artist to give teachers the tools and confidence to integrate the arts in the classroom and recognise its power as a teaching tool.

Expressions of interest in the program are being sought from schools within the Murray Arts region of  Indigo, Towong, Corowa and Greater Hume Shires, City of Wodonga and Albury City Council.

Leading academic and School Drama (TM) partner Professor Robyn Ewing from The University of Sydney said there was no doubt that the arts in the classroom have benefits that go beyond creativity.

‘A number of International and Australian studies have proven that children who are embedded in quality arts experiences do better academically, do better from a social point of view and are more rounded emotionally’ Professor Ewing said.

Working together across a full school term, participating teachers and the Teaching Artist explore how drama strategies can be integrated into areas of English and literacy. But the benefits don’t stop there. Schools who have been involved in the program have noticed other benefits right across the learning spectrum.

School Drama TM allows teachers to employ innovative teaching strategies in their own classrooms, with the students they work with everyday, with the support and guidance of the Teaching Artist.

Murray Arts General Manager,Karen Gardner said this was an amazing opportunity for the region.

‘Ever since I found out about the School Drama program about two years ago, I was keen to bring it to our region. Personally, I come from a Drama in Education background, so I am thrilled about the opportunity this will bring for both teachers and students around the region.’

General Manager of HotHouse Theatre, Tahni Froudist, is equally enthusiastic.

‘This program represents a fantastic opportunity for everyone involved. For HotHouse, we’ve recently been building our relationships with primary schools in our area, so a program like this which involves our great friends at Murray Arts, as well as the Sydney Theatre Company, is very exciting indeed.’

STC Executive Director Patrick McIntyre said STC is delighted to be taking their highly effective education program into regional NSW, investing in a local artist, and providing valuable teacher professional learning in the Border and North East Victoria region.

To find out more about the school drama program and how to submit your Expression of Interest visit www.sydneytheatre.com.au/schooldrama Expressions of Interest close at 5pm on Tuesday 10 March 2015.