Creative Drama Activities: Grades Preschool - 1

SHARK SAYS

Objective: To practice focus and using the body.

Procedure: Students must do exactly as "Shark Says." In this variation on "Simon Says," no student has to be "out." Teacher uses motions inspired by sharks or other animals in the food chain.

  • Students sit or stand in circle (pre-schoolers focus better on activity when sitting)
  • Teacher becomes the "Shark" and stands in center of circle
  • "Shark" gives instructions (i.e. "Shark says: Show me your shark teeth", "Shark says: Bite like a shark", "Shark says: Make claws like a crab")
  • Encourage students to use their imagination
  • Reinforce the individuality of each students' motion

Note: This activity is designed to warm up the body and imagination. It is low-risk to ensure the success of every student. To build on this activity, add emotions to the animal movements. For example: Shark says, "Snap your claws like an angry lobster."

Evaluation:

  1. What was your favorite movement?
  2. What does a shark/crab/octopus/etc. like to do?
  3. What ocean animal would you like to be and why?
  4. Beneath the Ocean Blue: Creative Drama Activities


FISHY MIRRORS

Objective: To practice focus and hand-eye coordination.

Procedure: Class follows teacher in a silent mirror activity using motions inspired by fishes or fishing.

  • Teacher sits on chair in front of class seated on floor
  • Students must follow teacher's movements carefully and quietly
  • Teacher should move slowly enough to encourage good focus
  • Be creative with the upper body movements
  • Incorporate exaggerated facial expressions

Suggestions: Start with sinuous hand movements that represent fishes. Next, pantomime casting a fishing pole and pretend to catch something. Make big facial expressions (i.e. surprise, excitement) that the students can also mirror. Being seated helps the class to remain focused.

Evaluation:

  1. Go over the idea of "focus" or "paying attention."
  2. Ask for suggestions from the class for movements inspired by fishes


A DOLPHIN LEAPS

Objective: To practice focus and expression through creative movement.

Procedure: Class follows teacher in a dramatization of a poem inspired by dolphins, whales, or other marine mammals.

  • Teacher reads poem to class:

    A Dolphin Leaps

    A dolphin leaps and leaps for joy
    He swishes his tail to say good-bye
    He dives beneath the ocean blue
    He is so different from me and you

    A dolphin swims and catches fish
    They really are his favorite dish!
    He is so happy to be free
    To leap and play in the clear, blue sea


  • Students try out movements suggested in poem
  • Students practice movements while teacher reads poem
  • Students perform while teacher reads
  • If time, videotape students performing
  • If poem is brief, students can also recite while doing movements

Suggestions: Making up short poems is a wonderful class activity.

Evaluation:

  1. How do other animals move?
  2. How does a crab or seal move?
  3. What does your favorite animal like to do?