ROYAL Opera House Thurrock Trailblazer school East Tilbury Primary took their Year 6 classes to see the National Theatre’s performance of JM Barrie’s Peter Pan on 8 December.
73 Year 6 pupils also visited the National Theatre for a Make Theatre Day earlier in the term, to find out about the creative processes that go into putting on a performance at a national arts organisation. The students were able to watch some of the rehearsal process, tour the backstage areas and take part in a physical theatre and making workshop with National Theatre puppeteers and practitioners. They also discovered the skills needed for creating props using ordinary everyday objects, and had an opportunity to make their own props: divided into small groups, they made crocodiles and birds.
East Tilbury Primary School chose to have these workshops as part of the Royal Opera House Thurrock Trailblazer programme. Jade Caton, Trailblazer Cultural Champion for East Tilbury, chose the National Theatre project as Peter Pan is a studied text for Year 6 students. Through this project, the children were able to gain an insight into theatre, both behind the scenes and in performance.
Jade said: ‘”All children thoroughly enjoyed the workshops and day at the National Theatre. The day catered for all of our needs including our vulnerable and SEND children. On reflection back in school some of the children said it was the best trip they had ever been on. All children felt confident to perform in front of others and use the puppetry techniques featured in the day, some have continued to use the techniques in dance lessons continued in school”
Thurrock Trailblazer is an innovative programme of high quality arts and cultural activities, visits to heritage sites and specialist teacher training, that boost creative learning in schools and accelerate pupils’ development.
To find out more about Royal Opera House Thurrock Trailblazer, please go to www.roh.org.uk/trailblazer.