As a third year drama student, I am starting to think about my *dun dun duuuun* future. It’s a scary prospect for anyone but arguably, more so for those of us entering into an undoubtedly hazy job market. It’s a time where the countless aunties/friends/strangers saying “and what EXACTLY are you going to do with THAT degree” that you so eagerly brush off as a fresher and second year, start to play on your mind a little bit when you realise its your final year as an undergrad.
My future plans ultimately lie in the field of dramatherapy, with the goal of one day doing an MA in it. However for students, practitioners, actors, directors etc the idea of being a Drama Teacher is always a possibility and at this stage in my life (3rd year, 22, not ready to be an adult) it’s not something I’m ruling out any time soon. In fact after volunteering in a primary school last year and loving it, I don’t want to rule it out.
Sam herself studied Drama, Applied Theatre and Education at Central and has made a living as a freelance drama teacher and now she’s written a book…and a cracking one at that! It’s an all encompassing guide to how to teach drama effectively to a number of different students and how to make a living doing so, even covering health and safety, insurance and even a useful lists of contacts if this is a path you’re considering for your future.
Each chapter is split into short snappy sections so you can easily find what you’re looking for meaning that it’s not only good for a cover to cover read but also as a quick reference guide if there’s something you’re not sure of. The chapters are:
- Life as a Freelance Drama Teacher – How your career may differ to those teachers employed by a school/certain organisation and the options available to you as a result.
- Getting Started – So you’ve decided you want to pursue freelance teaching and “now what?” this chapter helps answer this question.
- The Interview – So important to know just how to ace an interview, this will tell you how to be prepared.
- Lesson Plans – Because being organised is key.
- Being a Good Drama Teacher – Anyone one qualified can be a drama teacher, but it takes a special something to be GOOD ONE.
- Classroom Discipline – Probably one of the most useful chapters for me, I have quite low confidence in this area.
- Directing a Show – If you’re a drama teacher at some point you will have to direct a show so this chapter is super helpful.
- Setting Up an After-School Club – Again, a must for most drama teachers.
- Insurance, Health and Safety – The necessary stuff that, to me, is very intimidating. The stuff you just can’t ignore.
- Contacts – A great list of people/organisations who will undoubtedly be super helpful.
So, obviously, this book covers a lot of areas. There’s countless stuff you’ll find helpful if you do plan to pursue freelance drama teaching. On her website you can also buy a range of packages that include a fully licensed version of ‘Alice and Wonderland’ for the stage! This gives you the materials to put what you learnt into practice. (It even has music!)
A must read for any wannabe drama teacher and a book I will keep on my shelf for a long, long time. Thanks to Sam for sending me a pre-print copy. She didn’t ask me to do a review but I couldn’t not.