Links to plays : Olympian Myths Odysseus and the Cyclops Theseus and the Minotaur Perseus and Medusa
I will email you the play if you book the workshop. If you need to print it from the website, paste it into Word, use 2 columns, and narrow the margins, and it will fit onto 2 sides.
Useful Links: list of temple tasks cast lists acting tips pronouncing Greek names photos of costumes & props
Preparing for the Greek Workshop
There are a number of things it would be very helpful for you to do before my visit. I apologise for the length of this list but with your help the class will have an excellent day. There is a checklist at the end of the page you can use to help you make sure everything gets arranged.
1. I will need your computer and interactive whiteboard for my pictures.
2. Please leave a space at the side of the room for the art and the temple model.
3. Please fill in the forms below to assign children to the art activities and for the art game (see below).
4. Please arrange for a classroom assistant to help with the activities.
5. Please ensure you have the following ready on one side of the classroom:
Table at front of room
Covers for tables (please make sure tables are covered before I arrive)
1 sharp pencil per child
Art shirt for each child (we will be using acrylic paint and permanent markers. Please put shirts on backs of chairs in advance.)
10 pots for water
10 Paint palettes
6 Pots for glue (do not put glue in them I will bring my own)
Paper towels (1 per child)
10 Pritt sticks
Felt tip pens, thin: yellow, red, grey, green, brown, black (6 of each)
10 Whiteboards for rolling plasticine (must be clean)
10 Glue spreaders
White acrylic paint (if you have any)
If we are doing Greek art after the temple:
6. We will need to have break at 10.00-10.20 to give me time to set out the materials for the temple making, and so the children can complete the temple activity by 11.30. I would like 4 children to help me set out the materials during break and also at lunch.
7. We will aim to have the temple nearly done by 11.30. A few children can finish it off at lunch if necessary. At 11.30 we will start learning about Greek Art. We will then play the Greek art game, either before or after lunch depending on when you have lunch break.
8. For the art game please assign children into 7 mixed ability groups. These will compete with each other in the game. A form is given below for the teams if you want to use it.
If we are doing the Greek play after the temple:
6. We will need to have break at 10.00-10.20 to give me time to set out the materials for the temple making, and so the children can complete the temple activity by 11.30. I would like 4 children to help me set out the materials during break.
7. We will aim to have the temple nearly done by 11.30. A few children can finish it off at lunch if necessary. At 11.30 we will start learning about Greek drama and discussing the play and gow we will rehearse it.
8. Please ensure you have copies of the script made for the children to read.
9. At the end children can buy an attractive A2 poster of the Parthenon for £1 (see last page).
10. Please have a cheque made out to Time Trips for £249/day ready at the end of my visit (my BACS details are below).
Temple making form
The tasks are ordered by difficulty, rated 4 (most difficult) to 1 (fairly easy). The number of children in each group is in brackets. If necessary you can reduce or increase these numbers slightly.
* making a display is only for classes of more than 32 children. The information for making the displays is provided by me on the day. You may want children to print pictures from this website - see the sections on the Parthenon and Athena..
Allocation of children to art activities
By difficulty level for a typical year 4 (1= easiest, 4= most difficult).
Note: items 13 and 14 should only be given to children of high artistic ability.
Children will have templates and photos to help them create accurate reproductions of Greek artefacts. They will use pencils, acrylic paint, paint pens and black permanent markers.
Preparing for the Plays
1. For the plays we will have some children making scenery (while the actors are rehearsing). Please try to find a sheet (perhaps ask parents to send one in) which can be drawn on to show a temple, cave or labyrinth. Alternatively provide paper which can be used to make columns, pediment etc. to show a Greek building, or perhaps a statue. Felt tip pens etc. will be needed to make the scenery. Also please arrange an extra helper to supervise the scenery making as I will need your help with the actors.
2. Pick one of the plays for your class to perform. (You may have already told me this in which case I will be sending you the play by post). For year 3 and 4 we will do the Olympian Myths. This is a series of short myths about the 12 main gods. For each child acting as a god there will be another reading out the myth, so 24 children will be involved in all (we can increase this number to 31 maximum). For smaller classes children can double roles. There are also three plays with a single story you can choose from, which are more challenging. They are suitable only for year 5 or 6.
You can read and print these four plays here:
Olympian myths Odysseus and the Cyclops Theseus and the Minotaur Perseus and Medusa
Please let me know which play you have chosen. I need to know so I can bring the right props and costumes.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone me on 0161 224 6445.
3. Now decide which of the children is going to be in the play. The number depends on the cast list for the play. After the teaching part of the afternoon the acting children will rehearse and the rest will make scenery (backdrop and columns). One child may act as a stagehand. Please therefore make a list which I can refer to of who will be playing what role. Click here for lists of the characters you can print. Only narrators speak lines (except in the authentic versions of the plays). Also it is quite all right to give children a character of the other sex. Please give the lead role (Perseus, Odysseus, or Theseus) to a bright child who will remember all the complicated movements required to perform the part.
4. It will be helpful if you can read through the play with the class a day or so before the workshop. I will send you the play formatted to fit on two pages. If you copy from the web site, paste it into Word, change it to two columns, and narrow each margin to 1.5cm, and it will fit onto two sides. Make one copy per narrator.
Get the narrators to practise reading in front of the class. They do not have to memorise it but their reading will be much better if they have practised. This is to prepare children to rehearse the play with me. We will have a fairly short time to rehearse on the day, so it will help if the children have some idea of what actions they will be performing at what time. Only the narrators will speak, and so the actors, wearing costumes and holding props, will be miming all the actions.
As part of this lesson, you can discuss what good acting is. Click here for some discussion points. You could also talk about the play itself, why the characters act as they do, what feelings they have, and so on. For example, the Cyclops acts as he does partly because he is savage by nature, but also because he has been invaded by strangers and thinks they trying to steal from him.
5. Invite another class to watch the final performance of the play, which will take place 25 minutes before the end of the school day. This will encourage the children to take the whole thing seriously and do their best.
6. Make sure the hall is reserved for the afternoon, from 30 minutes after the afternoon session starts (i.e. after the end of dinner) to the end of the day. Before the rehearsal begins some children will arrange seats into a semicircle, in the style of a Greek theatre.
Also please have a cheque made out to Time Trips for the appropriate amount (£249 per day) ready at the end of my visit. I can provide an invoice if needed.Thank you!