At Northway School we have a qualified drama teacher who teaches drama as a subject to all the children on a weekly basis. These drama lessons take place in our state of the art drama room which is equipped with a stereo system, various stage lights and a big projector. We also have a props room full of different dressing up clothes and other interesting drama items.
Through drama, children have the chance to practise following simple instructions and working as part of a team. By playing various drama games, the children work with each other and interact with the other members of the group. In the drama lessons, children also familiarise themselves with dressing up, using props and acting out a number of fictional and non-fictional stories. Drama offers them a great opportunity to use their body and voice in order to become different characters, people or animals and rehearse real life situations. Their imagination and creativity are developed by making up their own stories and expressing themselves through improvisation and role play. Sensory drama activities are an important part of the lessons as they help the children explore and improve their senses such as touch, sight and hearing. Physical drama exercises used in the lessons aim to give them reasons to investigate moving in different ways and having fun while enjoying themselves. Every week, a group of children who show a special talent in performing arts take part in a lunch time drama club and have the opportunity to demonstrate and also develop their talent. Our annual winter show and the end of the year production are fantastic occasions for all children to showcase their talents and experience performing on stage in front of an audience.
Children develop their creativity by exploring visual, tactile and sensory activities, mediums and experiences. From the early years, children begin to investigate and understand and use basic skills, mark making, colour, shape, space, pattern and texture to represent their ideas. They begin to communicate likes and dislikes, making choices and exploring skills inside and outside the classroom. Children also explore and learn about art, design and technology both 2D and 3D, developing ideas, investigating and making before beginning to evaluate their work. They explore a range of common mediums, materials and tools. They also explore familiar products and how they work. Kitchen Science Technology is enjoyed by all Northway children and is a very creative, cross curricular, technology subject helping to develop life skills. As the children develop their creative skills through more imaginative, creative and complex activities, they build on and improve their skills and techniques. They also explore and appreciate the art and design of other cultures and the work of famous artists. Museum/art gallery visits and artistʼs workshops, encourage the children to be confident in using visual and tactile elements/ mediums, materials and processes, working with others, to communicating what they see, think about, design and make. We have a successful annual Creativity Week involving all the children, pupils art work is displayed in our Northway ʻArt Galleryʼ, all the children contribute to an annual Big Picture artistic piece and we are developing plans to be part of the Arts Award programme (a nationally recognised award scheme).
We believe that music can help concentration, memory and learning as well as being a way for pupils to express themselves and to collaborate with their peers; so at Northway, music is an integral part of school life. It is not only taught as a discreet subject but is used throughout the day as a basis for many lessons. We use music to engage, to motivate, to aid relaxation and to make sure lessons are fun. Music lessons are taught in classes, in small groups, on a 1:1 basis and in inter-class groups. In these sessions the children have opportunity to explore instruments and their voice, to create and experiment with sound, to perform and to listen to a wide variety of music. We use the eight elements of music to help move through lessons; these are tone, pitch, duration, tempo, dynamics, texture, structure and silence. All pupils are given access to music and we have a variety of instruments and accessible technology to ensure that every child can take part, no matter their ability. We have visits from musicians throughout the school year, who perform a variety of musical styles for the children to experience and enjoy; such as African drumming, flamenco and classical. We also have a fantastic choir, who meet every Thursday lunchtime and who perform at all our school shows as well as in some assemblies.