Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Drama Ideas for Preschool Kids

My babes are really into drama... whether they are dressing-up for Halloween or to go on stage, they love the idea of dressing-up and creating a character. Get your littles started early in theater to help them develop confidence and as a creative outlet.

Why Drama?

In 1999, Dr. James Catterall of UCLA, released the findings of a 10 year study how on children's involvement in drama and music affected their academic performance. The study showed that children who were involved in drama and music scored higher in reading and math than students who were not. Performing is an important skill for young children to learn and practice, as it helps them gain confidence, enunciate words clearly, project their voices, become comfortable in front of a group and helps improve listening and reading skills. All of these skills will benefit them for a lifetime.

Improvisation Performances

Provide preschool children with a bag of props and ask them to make up a short story incorporating the objects. This improvisation will help them explore their imaginations and practice performance skills. Alternatively, have each preschool child pull on object out of the bag and pretend to use the object in a way that it is different than its intended purpose. For instance, a student who pulls out a tennis racket could pretend that it was a guitar and tell the class that he is a rock star in a band or could pretend it is a butterfly net and attempt to catch a pretend butterfly.


Puppets allow children the opportunity to perform without having to directly face the audience. Preschool students can use handmade or store-bought puppets to perform. Students can make puppets out of paper lunch bags or socks and simple craft supplies. Marionettes, finger or shadow puppets can also be used by preschoolers. Puppets can be used to retell a favorite nursery rhyme or an original script written by the children.

Other Preschool Drama Ideas

A preschool performance can be a full scale performance with costumes and a full cast or a small scale performance with only a parent or two in the audience. Use books as a starting point for a preschool drama. Read a book to the class and then ask the children to do a skit based on the book and provide simple props and costumes that correspond with the storyline of the book that kids can use. For instance, read the story of Little Red Riding Hood to the preschool class and then provide wolf ears, a basket and a red piece of fabric that the kids can use to reenact the story. Consider adding music or dance to a performance.

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