Established in 1993, the Australian International School Singapore (AISS) has gained international recognition as an outstanding educational institution. I have been invited to work with 240 Year 2 students from the Junior School who are studying communities of the Medieval period.
Through gaining an insight and understanding of how dance can be applied to the students learning, I have been working with them to devise movement that looks at particular topics within a Medieval theme. Some of these include, preparing for battle, wars, death, building empires and Kingdoms, fortresses, religion and celebrating the birth of a new era.
It sounds fantastic! I’m sure what you provide will be a wonderful learning experience. Elle Ryan (Year 2 Head Teacher
Two class groups making up 44 students in each session have been working together to devise their own dance movements and phrases to develop for their end of year school performance. It’s been both educational and fun. They are learning how to be expressive with their movements, how to generate ideas and communicate these through using their body and voice to tell a story.
One student commented after the hour-long workshop,
I thought it was excellent meeting a famous dancer. What was challenging for me was finding out what I should do the six moves on. I learnt how to dance.
Another student said,
I thought we were making our own dance, but this was even better. I learnt how to build a castle. I found it fun working with Philip because he was funny. He teaches dance in a fun way and listens to all our ideas.
One class group went back to their classroom and thought about the workshop and what they learnt. They also drew pictures of their experience.
At the end of the two days working with the 2nd Year Junior School students, the class teachers and assistants will continue developing these ideas which are just the starting point for their performance. Adding the design element and costumes will be a group collaboration between myself, the staff and the students.
The Junior School recognises the diversity of cultures in Singapore and even in each child’s own class and provides opportunities for all children to learn about and respect other cultures. For more information about the AISS visit their website.
Image: Sara (class 2WA)