It has become widely understood that effective language learning involves more than the four integrated skills of ELT. The missing link is the fifth dimension ........that of teaching thinking. This PIPP will explore the cognitive processes employed by learners in a drama lesson and see how they relate to the development of higher order thinking skills. Reference will be made to Fisher's model of language learning, Heathcote's premise that drama IS education, Baldwin’s cross reference chart and Cummins´ quadrant of cognitive processes. There will be some theory and lots of activity.
· a willing suspension of disbelief· a willing suspension of disbelief
· an agreement to pretence· an agreement to pretence
· employing all past experiences· employing all past experiences
· employing any conjecture of imagination· employing any conjecture of imagination
to create a living, moving picture of life whichto create a living, moving picture of life which
aims at surprise and discovery for theaims at surprise and discovery for the
participants rather than for any onlookers.participants rather than for any onlookers.
Linguistic intelligence – the modes of language
Teaching Children to ThinkTeaching Children to Think
Robert Fisher (1995)Robert Fisher (1995)
Processes in ThinkingProcesses in Thinking
- obtaining and organising- obtaining and organising
knowledge throughknowledge through
sensory awareness andsensory awareness and
perception to confirm:perception to confirm:
““what Iwhat I
Processes in ThinkingProcesses in Thinking
–– thinking through athinking through a
situation and makingsituation and making
actions meaningful:actions meaningful:
Processes in ThinkingProcesses in Thinking
–– strategies for usingstrategies for using
knowledge and solvingknowledge and solving
problems that combineproblems that combine
“what I do” with “what I“what I do” with “what I
and thinkingand thinking
about andabout and
generating newgenerating new
The Language and ThoughtThe Language and Thought
objects, events and experiences are linkedobjects, events and experiences are linked
internally as the students develop theirinternally as the students develop their
understanding of symbolism and symbolic formunderstanding of symbolism and symbolic form
the “dialogic” talk enables “intermental”the “dialogic” talk enables “intermental”
experiences to influence “intramental” thoughtexperiences to influence “intramental” thought
unique collective opps for exploratory talk inunique collective opps for exploratory talk in
role/”as if ”/ as self in imagined worldsrole/”as if ”/ as self in imagined worlds
speculation, consideration, evaluation,reasoningspeculation, consideration, evaluation,reasoning
Drama provides an exciting and safeDrama provides an exciting and safe
forum for thinking and acting behindforum for thinking and acting behind
the shield of a role but once the shieldthe shield of a role but once the shield
is removed the experience and thoughtsis removed the experience and thoughts
from the drama remain with the childfrom the drama remain with the child
cognitively and maybe emotionally.cognitively and maybe emotionally.
Drama is a forum forDrama is a forum for
encouraging, stimulating andencouraging, stimulating and
liberating individual andliberating individual and
collective thoughts ……..So?collective thoughts ……..So?
Still image or tableauStill image or tableau
Students use their bodies to make an image or tableauStudents use their bodies to make an image or tableau
capturing an idea, theme or moment in time, describingcapturing an idea, theme or moment in time, describing
what they want to say.what they want to say.
Students may use thought-tracking to extract meaningStudents may use thought-tracking to extract meaning
from the image.from the image.
Try with IBoBTry with IBoB
Inclusive BrainstormingInclusive Brainstorming
on Bullyingon Bullying
In groups up to 8In groups up to 8
Number down in 4 columns 1-8 (or 1-5 etc)Number down in 4 columns 1-8 (or 1-5 etc)
Sit in a circle and label each with a N°Sit in a circle and label each with a N°
Start with N° 1 who says a word or a phraseStart with N° 1 who says a word or a phrase
Everybody lists each person’s contributionEverybody lists each person’s contribution
Keep listing until you are all saying PASSKeep listing until you are all saying PASS
Using your words create a tableau toUsing your words create a tableau to
represent Bullyingrepresent Bullying
Types of Bullying-VisualisationTypes of Bullying-Visualisation
Use your Mind’s Eye…..Use your Mind’s Eye…..
Can you identify 5 types?Can you identify 5 types?
Call and ResponseCall and Response
How does sadness smell?How does sadness smell?
……..rejection sound?..rejection sound?
…………self esteem feel?self esteem feel?
…………anxiety taste?anxiety taste?
What does loneliness look like?What does loneliness look like?
………………helplessness feel like?helplessness feel like?
A Lump of ClayA Lump of Clay
2.2. Pick it upPick it up
3.3. Put it downPut it down
4.4. Make a sausage shapeMake a sausage shape
5.5. Now make the same shape a different wayNow make the same shape a different way
6.6. Now put it down and think…..how can youNow put it down and think…..how can you
make it into a person…..start now…make it into a person…..start now…
7.7. In pairs tell what you did ….you can ask QsIn pairs tell what you did ….you can ask Qs
Conscience Alley/The Devil andConscience Alley/The Devil and
the Angelthe Angel
A useful technique for exploring any kind of dilemma faced by a character,A useful technique for exploring any kind of dilemma faced by a character,
providing an opportunity to analyse a decisive moment in greater detailproviding an opportunity to analyse a decisive moment in greater detail
Consider a moment when a character has aConsider a moment when a character has a
decision to make.decision to make.
Line up the students in two parallel linesLine up the students in two parallel lines
facing each otherfacing each other
One person takes the role of the protagonistOne person takes the role of the protagonist
and walks between the lines as eachand walks between the lines as each
member of the group speaks their advice.member of the group speaks their advice.
It can be organised so that those on oneIt can be organised so that those on one
side give opposing advice to those on theside give opposing advice to those on the
When the protagonist reaches the end ofWhen the protagonist reaches the end of
the alley, she makes her decisionthe alley, she makes her decision
Improvisation and Freeze FrameImprovisation and Freeze Frame
Get into groups of 4 - Plan an improvisation:Get into groups of 4 - Plan an improvisation:
Choose one of the types of bullying:Choose one of the types of bullying:
Decide who the characters are and what theirDecide who the characters are and what their
attitudes areattitudes are
Discuss what you will do and say for eachDiscuss what you will do and say for each
Practice in your groupPractice in your group
When I say ACTION perform your ImprovWhen I say ACTION perform your Improv
then when I say FREEZE! Stay still exactly asthen when I say FREEZE! Stay still exactly as
you are like a photo.you are like a photo.
H.O.T.S. from D HeathcoteH.O.T.S. from D Heathcote
AA A problem must be seen inA problem must be seen in
Must be interesting for theMust be interesting for the
participants. Must seem toparticipants. Must seem to
employ their ‘interest’.employ their ‘interest’.
BB The new elementThe new element Old familiar matter in new formOld familiar matter in new form
to ‘shock’ into awareness.to ‘shock’ into awareness.
CC Decisions must be called forDecisions must be called for The active area of commitmentThe active area of commitment
to action and the solving ofto action and the solving of
DD Employing experienceEmploying experience
productively not passivelyproductively not passively
Relevant previous experienceRelevant previous experience
comes into action.comes into action.
EE Getting feedback – not toGetting feedback – not to
be ducked!be ducked!
No escape from the immediateNo escape from the immediate
outcome and results of decisionsoutcome and results of decisions
FF Conscious examination ofConscious examination of
changes if anychanges if any
A standing back from the actionA standing back from the action
to review presentto review present
Provide Contexts to SupportProvide Contexts to Support
Language DevelopmentLanguage Development
Context B D Context
Embedded A C Reduced
Cognitive ProcessesCognitive Processes
• reading to find specific informationreading to find specific information
• transferstransfers information from one medium to anotherinformation from one medium to another
• appliesapplies known proceduresknown procedures
• describesdescribes observationsobservations
• narratesnarrates with sense of beginning, middle, endwith sense of beginning, middle, end
• comparescompares andand contrastscontrasts
• classifiesclassifies by known criteriaby known criteria
• personalisespersonalises given informationgiven information
• recallsrecalls andand reviewsreviews
• seeksseeks solutionssolutions to problemsto problems
parrotsparrots: repeats utterances of adult: repeats utterances of adult
or peeror peer
copiescopies: reproduces information: reproduces information
from board or textsfrom board or texts
• argues a caseargues a case / evidence persuasively/ evidence persuasively
• identifies criteriaidentifies criteria
• developsdevelops andand sustainssustains ideasideas
• justifiesjustifies opinion or judgmentopinion or judgment
• evaluatesevaluates criticallycritically
• interpretsinterprets evidence, makes deductionsevidence, makes deductions
• forms hypothesesforms hypotheses, asks further questions for, asks further questions for
• predictspredicts resultsresults
• appliesapplies principles to new situationsprinciples to new situations
• analysesanalyses, suggests solutions and tests, suggests solutions and tests
The Relationship between ThinkingThe Relationship between Thinking
and Dramaand Drama
High quality thinkingHigh quality thinking High quality dramaHigh quality drama
Is not routine – the path ofIs not routine – the path of
action is not fully known inaction is not fully known in
Is not just re-enactment of what is known. The childrenIs not just re-enactment of what is known. The children
make decisions that influence the direction of themake decisions that influence the direction of the
drama and they are given ownership, with theirdrama and they are given ownership, with their
ideas being used to develop the drama.ideas being used to develop the drama.
Tends to be complex – the totalTends to be complex – the total
path is not visible from apath is not visible from a
single viewpointsingle viewpoint
Drama explores through role, the same situation fromDrama explores through role, the same situation from
the viewpoints of different characters. It is not athe viewpoints of different characters. It is not a
linear process.linear process.
Yields multiple rather thanYields multiple rather than
unique solutionsunique solutions
Drama is “open”. Scenes can be reworked and replayedDrama is “open”. Scenes can be reworked and replayed
in many ways with a multiplicity of solutions andin many ways with a multiplicity of solutions and
Involves nuanced judgmentInvolves nuanced judgment
and interpretationand interpretation
Nuance is key to drama. Meanings are arrived at andNuance is key to drama. Meanings are arrived at and
communicated in a variety of ways, verbal, visualcommunicated in a variety of ways, verbal, visual
and kinaesthetic. Each person in an audience andand kinaesthetic. Each person in an audience and
each participant in the drama will interpret theeach participant in the drama will interpret the
drama somewhat differently, depending on theirdrama somewhat differently, depending on their
present understandings and experience.present understandings and experience.
Can involve the application ofCan involve the application of
multiple criteria whichmultiple criteria which
may conflict with onemay conflict with one
Drama involves problem solving and the resolutionDrama involves problem solving and the resolution
of dilemmas both within the drama and in theof dilemmas both within the drama and in the
process of making the drama.process of making the drama.
Involves uncertainty – notInvolves uncertainty – not
everything about the taskeverything about the task
at hand is knownat hand is known
Drama in education develops. It cannot be knownDrama in education develops. It cannot be known
what will emerge in the process as it is interactivewhat will emerge in the process as it is interactive
and dynamic by nature. It is not about re-and dynamic by nature. It is not about re-
enacting what is known and certain, but aboutenacting what is known and certain, but about
discovering and exploring what is uncertain.discovering and exploring what is uncertain.
Involves imposing meaning –Involves imposing meaning –
finding structure infinding structure in
apparent disorderapparent disorder
Drama is all about finding, making andDrama is all about finding, making and
communicating meanings. It is structured, mainlycommunicating meanings. It is structured, mainly
by the teacher initially, but as children becomeby the teacher initially, but as children become
more experienced and develop their drama skillsmore experienced and develop their drama skills
they are more able to take over responsibility forthey are more able to take over responsibility for
structuring their own drama and communicatingstructuring their own drama and communicating
meaning to others through performance.meaning to others through performance.
Is effortful – considerableIs effortful – considerable
mental work is needed formental work is needed for
the kinds of elaborationthe kinds of elaboration
and judgements requiredand judgements required
Good drama is an active and interactive experience,Good drama is an active and interactive experience,
which is both intellectually and emotionallywhich is both intellectually and emotionally
demanding for both participants and audience.demanding for both participants and audience.
Adapted from Baldwin P. and McGuinness C.
What Drama promotes thinking?What Drama promotes thinking?
Conscience AlleyConscience Alley
Thought TrackingThought Tracking
Hot SeatingHot Seating
Circle LikertCircle Likert
Statue EvaluationStatue Evaluation
Mantle of the ExpertMantle of the Expert