Shakespeare Today

Shakespeare workshops for primary schools

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A Midsummer Night’s Dream or The Tempest*.

Connect children with Shakespeare’s plays in a really active and emotive way.

Professionally led drama activities inspire children to be really confident about learning Shakespeare - arguably the world’s best ever storyteller!

Schools often ask us to help them bring a Shakespeare play to life at the start of a new topic, or to build on the children’s existing knowledge.

The children will:

  • Work with a professional West End actor/facilitator who will inspire and direct them.
  • Explore Shakespeare's works and times in a fun, active and engaging way.
  • Develop their understanding of the play’s characters and experience live performance first-hand - the way Shakespeare intended his plays to be enjoyed!
  • Learn from material tailored for their age-group. Younger children work in groups while older children take on individual lines of Shakespeare's text.

There are two options:

Play in a Day Shakespeare workshops

Our unique ‘Play in a Day’ experience involves your entire school working collaboratively to learn and perform an abridged version of a Shakespeare play together in a single day!

The children work class-by-class in 30/40 minute tailored sessions, with each year group taking ownership of a specific part of the play. Reception and Year 1 usually provide the environment and the sound effects, while Years 2 to 6 each lead one act of the play.

For the last 45 minutes of the day all the children come together and use the material they have worked on (alongside backing tracks, recorded by the cast of Horrible Histories) to perform an abridged version of the entire play to each other!

We can also do the Play in a Day for KS2 classes, taking part in five or six sessions in a day.

Hand Picked Shakespeare workshops

In-depth ‘Handpicked Shakespeare’ sessions are ideal when fewer children are taking part, and focus on interpretation and performance using professional drama techniques. Rather than covering the entire Shakespeare play the children explore the story, language and world of the play.

This workshop is designed in a pick and mix style, so after some warm-up exercises each class gets a tailored session using a range of drama exercises. They might explore Shakespeare's storytelling techniques and characterisation, physicalise the rhythm of Shakespeare's verse, or bring to life a particular section of text.

These sessions can be anything from 40 to 90 minutes, with an optional sharing session at the end for the children to perform what they have worked on.

* The Tempest is available from 19 February 2018. Before then schools can book A Midsummer Night's Dream or Macbeth. We also have limited availability in the summer term with Romeo and Juliet and Twelfth Night!