Monday, May 21, 2012

Scaffolding Children's Learning through Story and Drama

Scaffolding is a well-known metaphor widely used in education and language teaching to describe the guidance, collaboration and support provided by teachers to lead children to new learning. As the metaphor implies,scaffolding is a temporary construct which can be put up,taken down, reinforced and strengthened, or dismantled piece by piece once it is no longer needed, and as children develop language and skills which enable them to act in an increasingly competent, confident and independent way (Read, 2006).

I like to suggest you the reading of the article "Scaffolding Children's Learning through Story and Drama", written by Carol Read.  It is about integrating and combining storytelling and drama techniques in different ways to provide "robust and flexible scaffolding".

Carol points the idea to naturally integrate stories and drama as a way to scaffold learning during language lessons with young learners of English.

The main futures of stories and drama are at the base of this scaffold:
  • They build on children's capacity for play
  • They deal with significant issues
  • They engage multiple intelligences
  • They appeal to different learning styles
  • They suspend norms of time, place and identity.
  • They are social and communal
  • They have rules and conventions

"In an integrated approach the aim at a global level may be that the children will come back to the story three or four times. During this period, their initial receptive understanding of the story will be scaffolded in order to enable them to act out and re-tell the story, to explore relevant issues it raises, and to personalise and transfer some of the language it contains to their own lives" (Read, IATEFL, 2008)

My next post will be an example of a puppet theatre play performed by children learning English as a third language (do not miss it!).

No comments:

Post a Comment