DRAMA THROUGH STORYTELLING: A PRACTICAL APPROACH FOR THE TEACHER OF ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Mark Danby amd David Kemp.
Volume 11 Number 5.
How do you go beyond a story? The authors, by presenting three stories, suggest how to do just that. The introductory philosophical survey on drama and play proves to be most beneficial not only as a beginning viewfjoint but as a terse refresher of ideas as well.
The stated focus of the book is on using a story as a springboard for literary and dramatic interpretation. Hence, one story for each elementary level is presented: "King Grumbletum and the Magic Pie" for primary grades, "Chinook" for intermediate grades, and "The Dog with a Million Fleas" for grades 7 and 8. Each story is tersely introduced, elaborately related, and followed by a brief section of extension activities (drama, art, music, or language arts). If this section is to be considered the focus of the text, then it is most disappointing. It should be noted that the stress is placed on the retelling of the stories (43.5 pages) as contrasted to the sharing of follow-up ideas (10.5 pages). The dramatic improvisation suggestions for "The Dog with a Million Fleas" are thoughtful, well-stated and challenging. Alas, the follow-up ideas for the other two stories are trite, skimpy in substance, and lacking in explanation.
The third section offers a series of structural exercises designed to elaborate the authors' concept of drama circles. Although clever in conception, this idea needs a more thorough explanation and a rearrangement of the sequence of activities to be truly effective and compre-hendible in terms of the focus of the book.
The extensive thirty-three-page bibliography is most commendable as a reference source; however, it could have been much more useful to teachers had it been annotated and more selective in terms of dramatizing from a story.
Ronald Jobe, Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC.
1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995
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