Using Drama in the English Language Classroom

Course Summary

This highly interactive teacher training course provides a solid introduction to using Drama in the language classroom; the course covers a broad span of teaching ideas and activities to enliven lessons and make them more motivating, and places a strong emphasis on developing practical skills for the classroom. The course is useful for both those with some experience of drama and theatre as well as those new to the field.

Fast Facts

Course dates:25 Feb – 01 March 2019
15 – 19 April 2019
01 – 05 July 2019
15 – 19 July 2019
12 – 16 August 2019
07 – 11 October 2019
Max. group size:12
Entry level:B1
Min. age:23
Course materials:Included
Booking fee: £50
Terms and conditions

Target Audience

This course is for all professionals who want to better make use of drama methods in the language classroom. You will learn about different approaches to using Drama techniques, resources and approaches, various language and physical activities that assist the learning and acquisition process, and develop your own skills for teaching in this area. Participants need to be at a minimum B1 level of English.


After registration, participants on this course programme will receive:

  • a pre-course questionnaire which will enable trainers to learn about the participants’ teaching backgrounds
  • information about the Europass Mobility Certificate
  • a recommended reading list to prepare participants for various aspects of the course
  • information about York to prepare teachers for their cultural experience


By the end of the course participants will:

  • have a knowledge of the key pedagogy behind teaching English and other languages using drama
  • have gained the confidence to lead and run drama-based lessons
  • have developed an understanding of the range of possibilities available at a range of levels
  • have a better understanding of the uses of drama and expand and build on previous knowledge (if any).
  • have been introduced to new practical and engaging drama techniques, using hands-on methods
  • have reflected on their own teaching methods and contexts and develop teaching skills
  • have developed an awareness of how to bring drama into language lessons in exciting and dynamic ways
  • have exchanged pedagogical information and knowledge in a multi-cultural context
  • have further developed their own language skills
  • have experienced the theatrical heritage of York


Sessions demonstrate and train approaches, methodologies, techniques and knowledge in the use of drama to teach foreign languages. An interactive communicative approach is applied, which provides participants with their own experiential learning of the activities and methodologies. Input sessions are in the form of hands-on workshops and involve brainstorming, analysis, problem-solving, and role-play, both in pair work and group work. Participants are actively involved in the sessions to maximize their learning and to experience activities from their learners’ point of view.

Teachers are asked to reflect on the activities, inviting discussion with regard to their own pedagogical knowledge and skills, teaching methods and contexts, and on adaptation of activities to their own teaching and learning situations. Participants are also introduced to key resources related to the further development of their teaching skills and personal professional development. Both teaching and learning are explored, analyzed and discussed, further enabling the participants’ use of their teaching skills when using drama-based methods in the classroom.

Follow Up

The course ends with an evaluation session, where teachers are asked to reflect upon the value of the knowledge gained on the course. They are also encouraged in this session to create a Personal Development Action Plan, and select activities which they would like to try out in their own classes. They are invited to join the York Associates Community, which allows networking and contact with the trainers and fellow colleagues, and with participants from other courses.

Sample Course Programme

TIMESession OneSession TwoSession Three
Introduction to the course: objectives and methodology
- participants' experience of and understanding of drama
Introduction to the uses of drama in the language classroom

Who are the students, what are the objectives, and how does this relate to the curriculum or syllabus being followed?
What is “drama” and how does this differ from theatre studies?
- types of drama

TUESDAYDrama and drama games ideas in published material
- sources and lesson ideas
- language competence/level
- building a project or piecemeal exercises?
Team building activity and feedback

- drama as a means of communication using physical response
- drama activities to develop awareness of space, time, and voice
- 1:1:1 role-plays
Producing training materials
Group Workshop for materials production based around drama activities 
- how much teacher input/student input?
- autonomous learning
- creativity, word substitution
WEDNESDAYDefining learners’ current and future needs
- Key functional and communication skills
- integrating language areas into practice

– accessing characterisation
- use of pitch, rhythm, tempo, emphasis, stress
- costume 
- music
- impact
- confidence
- culture
Using authentic materials
Group Workshop with focus on
- composing authentic materials for practice
- voice, self-projection, movement, improvisation
THURSDAYSystems and methods
- Stanislavsky
- method acting
- mask work
- using scripts?
- memorising and rote-learning
- what is “performance”?
Language Feedback / Video playback
- situation-based
- style
- theatrical genre and period
- using language while directing/producing 
- processing the learning experience
- reviewing performance criteria
Projects review
- present and discuss issues
- Time, space, cost, management, 
- outcomes evaluation
- how to lead the whole project successfully
FRIDAYPresenting a Drama project
Preparing a project:
Trainees enact an authentic drama-based learning exercise
- degrees of challenge
- risk analysis


- knowledge of the key pedagogy behind using Drama-based methods in the language classroom
- criteria for success 
- means of assessment

Personal Action Plan further professional development

Review and feedback.

Each session above is 90 minutes long. Exact timings will be confirmed before your course.

21 hour teacher development courses may use a 8.00- 12.30 or 13.30 -17.30 time slot. Afternoon programmes will finish earlier on certain days for social programme options.

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