Wow, is it week one already?
To think that in 8 short weeks we will have covered so many things like multiple poems, tongue twisters, performing sections of scenes and having fun along the way!
Since we will be having a parent watching week, and other performance opportunities, we thought we’d put together some tips for home practice!
1.) Repeating Lines.
When practicing at home, try saying lines one at a time with your child, getting them to repeat it back to you. Be aware of the energy of their piece, pauses and infliction; expression creates interest, which makes the performance piece/s come alive for the audience.
2.) Question Time.
On each line, try to ask a question to get your child to really understand their performance piece/s. Ask questions like:
What face will you make while you’re saying that like?
What will change about your voice?
Will it be louder or softer, higher or lower, faster or slower?
3.) What Does That Mean?
When going through the piece/s, take note on any words that your child may be struggling to say. Do they understand what it means? What about trying it in another sentence? Although we go through the poem/s in class, it can be easy to forget a word and it’s meaning if we don’t use it everyday!
4.) Game Time.
Sometimes things like our tongue twisters can be difficult for children to get through without becoming upset or frustrated as it can be difficult! Instead of a “give up” attitude, try going through the tongue twister with them, showing them it’s okay to make mistakes as we can make them too! After a few goes saying it slowly, try playing a game to see who can say it clearly and quickly the most times. When fun is involved, the frustration of not getting it right doesn’t seem so bad anymore (and they’ll get more excited when they get it right!)
If you are aware of any sounds your child may be struggling with, try breaking down the word into parts and then putting them back together. For example:
Then. Th-e-n, th-en, then, then!
It may also be good to insert the word into another sentence, after they have sounded-out the word, to cement the correct sound in their brain.
6.) Art Attack!
Some children can be “visual learners” and perhaps getting them to draw a picture next to their poem, illustrating what that poem means to them or what the poem is about. This can help them with their expression and understanding of their piece/s.
If your child is sitting close across from you at the table during practice, they may tend to use their “inside” voice instead of projecting their voice, which they use when performing for an audience. To encourage their “strong” voice, have your child stand far away from you and project their voice all the way to you. Make sure they are using their “strong” voice and not a “shouty” voice!
8.) Lights, Camera, Action!
It can be a challenge to remember all the words for a child, especially when there is more than one piece to perform. To help combat this, try to get your child to remember some of the creative actions we use in class. Each action remembered can help them with their timing and placing of the poem verses.
9.) Positive Comments, Please.
Mistakes are celebrated here at Speak Up Studio, as it shows that our students have “had a go” and participated with the class! Make sure to always respond positively to any attempts at practise. They will watch your face to see how you react, so let your facial expression be happy, scared and surprised at appropriate moments through out the poem.
10.) Signing Off.
Feel free to be generous with the signatures on the practice sheet in from of the booklet.
Don’t stress about practise if it’s too hard to get to it. We understand that school homework can take priority, as Speak Up homework can be fun and children can get excited about their performance/s. To us here at the Studio, it’s a bonus, more than a requirement.
We look forward to having so much fun learning and experiencing new things with all our students, creating fond memories and saying (and doing) silly things that encourage us to be confident in who we are, being able to communicate in a fun and effective way, explore and expand our creativity and enjoy our time together. Through out the term we will be working hard learning lines and dance moves, so please take a seat and enjoy the show!