In Conversation: Drama Education in the Schools

Is play really the beginning of Drama? 

Poulsen: Drama in Greek means to do. Get up and do it; become it. In Drama we play around with different characters and situations, and see the world from different points of view. 

The more people can play the more learning takes place. 

Palmer: In Kindergarten, Grade 1 and Grade 2, Drama naturally exists in the classroom because you’re imagining and playing while you’re learning. Play doesn’t stop in elementary.

It can go all the way through to university. 


Is Drama a worthy discipline of study? Does it have applications beyond the stage?

Welch: Drama activities help students build communication skills, relationships, and confidence. They can leave the class with the skills to have a great interview, or talk to someone they used to be afraid of. They can apply in real life the skill sets of a character they’ve played.  

Wood: Students of Drama are students of living. It’s discovery-based learning, inquiry-based 

learning. A deep part of Drama is having a safe spot to learn. The safety, care and concern that define the workroom transcend into other areas in education. 


What kind of life skills do students gain from Drama education?

Poulsen: Create is the word we use almost constantly in Drama class. 

Palmer: Students creating together builds collaboration. Drama fosters emotions in others and gives us understanding of other people’s emotions.

Welch: In Drama you’re hyper aware, you’re reading body language. 

Wood: Drama gives us a tolerance for being uncomfortable and the ability to sit in that 

uncomfortableness and not know where something’s going but trust that it’s going somewhere. 

That’s creative thinking. 


Why is fun important in a child’s development?

Palmer: The best learning is when kids don’t know they’re learning. They’re just playing. 

Welch: When kids are having fun they’re just being themselves, and that’s really important at any age.





For more information contact:
Darcy Tamayose
Communications Officer
Dean's Office • Faculty of Education
University of Lethbridge
403-332-4550 • TH404

Twitter: @ULethbridgeEdu