In a childhood that is increasingly spent with technology in front of screens, Maple Grove is bringing the programming of Drama Kids International to Weaver Lake and Basswood elementary schools to kelp kids gain new skills in public speaking.
“The ability for children to practice public speaking is increasingly limited and yet it is a critical skill for success in their future,” said Executive Director, Flora Delaney.
Maple Grove is offering the unique program after school not to focus on improving its students’ memorization and acting abilities but to build confidence and self-esteem for any situation where they will need to speak in front of a group and think on their feet. The program combines improvisation, tongue twisters, mime techniques, scene creation and songs into an active hour program each week. The Drama Kids curriculum's fun interactive activities aim to improve communication skills and build confidence and self-esteem. Drama Kids maintains that drama is a fundamental part of education that teaches children to speak out clearly and relate confidently with peers. In a classroom environment, these skills improve a child’s ability to give book reports, speeches and actively participate in group projects.
“At Drama Kids, children have fun learning important communication skills they will need to succeed in life,” said Delaney, a Master Teacher for Drama Kids. “The skills they learn in our program give them the confidence they need for basic activities required at school, in church or just interacting with teammates. To me, the definition of a `quality after-school enrichment program’ is something that maximizes what is taught during regular school hours, yet be so enjoyable that children don’t even realize they’re learning. Drama Kids fits that mold perfectly.”
Drama Kids classes meet once each week for one hour at Weaver Lake Elementary and at Basswood Elementary schools. Registration to the limited classes is through the Osseo ISD Community Education office.
“The bottom line is that the Drama Kids curriculum will enhance a child’s academic experience,” Delaney said. “Parents need peace of mind that after the school day ends, their children are involved in valuable activities that enrich their learning. With Drama Kids, they get that."
Drama Kids International is the largest after-school drama program in the world, with more than 40,000 students currently enrolled at 1,000 plus locations both in the United States and internationally. Its copyrighted curriculum features original, creative lessons with a built-in advancing scale of language development that enables students of different ages and abilities to relate to the program and progress at a their own rate. Its curriculum differs significantly from traditional drama programs, with an emphasis on activities that focus on verbal dynamics, creative movement and dialogue development.