With St Hubert’s School in Walsall we worked with a Year One class, developing storytelling, reading and writing
skills using characters, roleplay, art and interventions.
Children imagined that the field outside was their ‘desert island’ on which they had been stranded. Lyndi and Janice led them in role as the ship’s captains. Back in the classroom, the children would reflect on their play and write stories or draw pictures of their experiences. Art was an integral part and the children built shelters, made ragged clothing, island jewellery and ‘mini-me’ peg dolls which were miniature versions of their island characters. These tiny dolls were used to stimulate further imaginative play and storytelling, as they could do impossible things like fly and climb trees. Later in the week, a pirate ship and treasure were introduced, as well as an actor in role as a castaway who could not speak English. The children had to discover how to communicate with him and put together the clues he gave them to help to tell his story.
In break times the children continued to play.
The project’s delivery life was one week, planned closely with the class teacher and teaching assistants. Several times we also worked with parents, incorporating them into our practical craft or creative roleplay sessions.
We had a wonderful time delivering this project. The children, especially the boys, loved the adventure and the participation of so positive male role models within storytelling.
This project was felt to be hugely beneficial and productive by the school, leading to greater confidence in storytelling, pretend play, creativity and narrative work.
This project was made possible by the Arts Council’s Creative Partnerships scheme.