Archive for the ‘Early Years’ Category


Gavin M
January 29th, 2015

Spring 2015 Tours

January started with a very busy and energetic rehearsal period in preparation for this term’s projects, a great way to burn off all that goose fat consumed over the holidays!

This week, Malcolm has started the tour of Bag of Beans, our Key Stage 1 programme set in the world of the traditional tale of Jack and the Beanstalk. By using their mathematical knowledge the children will be invited to investigate the world of the giant, and by undertaking challenging quests they will unlock his secrets in the hope of finding their way to his treasure.

Also this week Juliet and Kim have begun the tour of The Romans, our Key Stage 2 History programme which explores life in Britain under Roman rule at the time of Queen Boudica’s revolt.

Simon is currently on the last leg of the very popular tour of Tapestry in Secondary schools, colleges and PRUs. The programme explores the implications and consequences of extremist thinking and action. After half-term Simon will be touring, our Early Years Literacy programme, By the Riverbank, which immerses children in a rich fictional world inspired by Wind in the Willows. There will also be public performances of this programme performed at The Birmingham REP in April. More information can be found here.

There is limited availability on all tours this term but we will try to accommodate any booking requests as best we can. Our Summer term primary tours are starting to fill up fast too.

Further information about all the programmes listed above can be found through the ‘Latest Projects’ section on the home page of our website and for Summer term 2015 information please get in touch.

info@theplayhouse.org.uk
Tel: 0121 265 4425

Gav

Gavin M
May 13th, 2014

2014-15 primary tours now available!

We’ve now planned all the Foundation and Primary tours for the next academic year, including some exciting new projects and the return of some old favourites.

The booking forms for next academic year are now available to download (see the link at the bottom of this blog entry).

Some of our most popular tours are making a return, such as our early years programmes Climb Aboard and literacy piece Bag of Beans. There are also some popular programmes that will undergo redevising, these include Out of the Box, A Tale to Tell and Bag of Beans.

New for next year is Foreign Fields which has been created for the centenary of World War 1, Foreign Fields uses the experiences of real people in Birmingham to explore how the war in Europe affected the lives of people at home. We are working with the Archives and Heritage Service at the Library of Birmingham to research the stories of people and places across the city, such as school halls that were requisitioned as hospitals, local families who welcomed Belgian refugees into their homes and children whose lives changed while their fathers and brothers were away at the front.

To see the full list of programmes available and for more information on how to book please follow the link below.

Primary programmes available for 2014-2015.
Click here to book now!

 

 

Simon T
January 9th, 2014

Public Performances

As part of the Birmingham Repertory Theatres First Stages programme, The Play House are adapting four popular Language Alive programmes for public performances. First Stages is the ideal way to introduce a new generation to the delights of theatre and features plays especially for nursery and primary school-aged children.

Language Alive! First Stages – Spring/Summer 2014

Saturday 8 March 11.30, 14.00 & 15.30
Stargazing
Age 7 – 11
The Door

It is Florence in 1633 and the great scientist and astronomer Galileo is about to arrive and give a demonstration of his discoveries, when the terrible news comes that he has been arrested as a heretic. Stargazing provides an interactive experience that explains Galileo’s theories of planetary motion to prove to the judge that his theories are not heresy but fact.

Saturday 15 March 11.30, 14.00 & 15.30
Little Red Hen
Age 3 – 6
The Door

Little Red Hen needs to plant her wheat. She asks the other farm animals for help but no-one is willing to give her a hand – are you? An interactive version of the well loved children’s story with puppetry, games and lovely fresh bread.

Saturday 24 May 11.30, 14.00 & 15.30
Roll Up, Roll Up!
Age 3 – 6
The Door

As he works sweeping up at Zelda’s Circus, Bim dreams of performing in the big top, but never gets a chance to walk the tightrope or try on the costumes. As Bim shows you all the strange and wonderful things inside the circus, will he find his special talent and make his dream come true?

Saturday 28 June at 11.30, 14.00 & 15.30
Peep!
Age 4 – 7
The Door

Come on in to Uncle’s Story Shop, full of lots of exciting objects that he uses to make story bags for his customers. One day, his shop is broken into and everything is stolen. He needs your help to create new stories and in return, will help you create your very own new stories.

For more information on the Language Alive programmes being performed, other exciting projects from The REP and to book tickets please visit the First Stages page here.

First Stages

Gavin M
June 6th, 2013

Next year’s primary tours now available!

We’ve now planned all the Foundation and Primary tours for the next academic year, including some exciting new projects and the return of some old favourites.

Last year was the 25th year of Language Alive! tours and the first in our new partnership with the Birmingham Repertory theatre. The booking forms for next academic year are now available to download (see the link at the bottom of this blog entry).

Some of our most popular tours are making a return, such as our early years programmes Roll Up! Roll Up! and numeracy piece Little Red Hen. There are also some popular programmes that will undergo redevising, these include No Kidding, Pharaoh’s Footsteps and Peep.

New for next year is The Little Match Girl which relocates Hans Christian Andersen’s classic story to 19th century Birmingham in a new programme using an engaging mix of puppetry and toy theatre to explore historical issues and moral dilemmas. The Little Match Girl is being developed in partnership with the Birmingham Repertory Theatre and links with their main house production of A Christmas Carol. Schools booking The Little Match Girl before 5th July 2013 will be eligible to make group bookings for A Christmas Carol at the Early Bird rate.

To see the full list of programmes available and for more information on how to book please follow the link below.

Primary programmes available for 2013-2014.

Click here to book now!

 

Gavin M
March 26th, 2013

Nori – Public Performances

Our new early years production Nori has been touring now for several weeks and is getting a great reception wherever it goes.

Nori is a unique collaboration with Korea’s Hanyong Theatre Company exploring how we make friends across different cultures. It’s performed by The Play House teacher/actor Juliet Fry and Sosun Lee from Seoul in Korea. It’s directed by Peter Wynne-Willson with music written by Mary Keith.

It tells the story of Pearl, the last fisherwoman left in Bonnie Cove, who is puzzled by strange things that have been washing up on the beach. Who is the stranger in the sea who wants to make friends? Can she be trusted?

Come to one of our free public performances over Easter to find out:

Date   Time   Venue
         
Wednesday, 10 April 2013
(Free event)
              11:00                 Blackheath Library
145 High Street
Blackheath
Rowley Regis
West Midlands
B65 0EA
Tel: 0121 559 1884
         
Friday, 12th April 2013
(Free event)
  14.00   The Hive
Sawmill Walk
The Butts
Worcester
WR1 3PB

www.thehiveworcester.org
         
Saturday, 13 April 2013
(Free event)
  11:00   Oldbury Library
Jack Judge House
10 Halesowen Street
Oldbury
West Midlands
B69 2AJ
Tel: 0121 552 5933

 

Juliet F
January 25th, 2013

Korean adventure

I have just returned from Seoul, Korea after a fantastic two week visit to workshop ideas for our new Early Years Language Alive programme, Nori (which means play in Korean) with Hanyong Theatre.

Alongside our director Peter Wynne Willson and Shropshire based composer and musician Mary Keith we worked with a really great group of Korean drama graduates, actors and a musician and designer.

We were based in a school in the Seongmisan Village where we were made to feel very welcome by members of the community.

We have returned with a wealth of ideas including songs, stories and settings shared and generated throughout the workshop period. The actual devising begins this Monday with Pete and Mary and Korean actor and drama practitioner Sosun Lee and myself will be touring Nori to Birmingham schools from late February.

Our translator and friend Yerang Seong will be glad to hear that the Ginger and Apple tea has been keeping me warm this week and I miss our civilised lunches and lots about Korea already!

Juliet

Gavin M
July 5th, 2012

Programmes now available for 2012-13

This is the 25th year of Language Alive! tours and the first in our new partnership with The Birmingham Repertory theatre.

The booking forms for next academic year are now available to download (see the links at the bottom of this blog entry). Apologies for the delay – only during the week we were finalising the schedule, my wife went into labour!

We’ve attracted funding from The Arts Council for two exciting new tours; Nori! and All Aboard! (click to find out more information). Nori! will see a collaboration with the Birmingham based Hanyong Theatre Company and Buksetung Theatre Company from Seoul, South Korea. They will come together to share expertise to create a new piece of multilingual participatory theatre for the early years.

All Aboard! has grown out of the story of the Birmingham and Gloucester Railway, one of the oldest in the world, connecting industrial Birmingham to the spa town of Cheltenham. The programme uses the lives of the individual characters to explore the dynamism of this inventive era. All Aboard! is available for Years 5 & 6 and will also see a collaboration, this time with the Everyman Theatre Cheltenham.

Also new for next year will be Key Stage 1 programme By the River Bank, a charming new programme which explores the world created in Wind in the Willows, the enduringly popular children’s tale of Mole, Rattie, Toad and Badger by Kenneth Grahame and builds on the company’s extensive experience of creating storytelling programmes inspired by classic stories such as Into the Garden. The piece will also link into The Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s Christmas show.

Some of our most popular tours are also making a return, such as our Key Stage 1 health education programme Fit for a King, and our Early Years creative play piece Things That Go Bump…

We are also pleased to announce the return of two of our older projects; Hansel & Gretel, an exciting literacy programme devised for pupils in years 3 and 4 which encourages a fresh look at a well established story and Ganging Up, an ambitious participatory performance that explores the complex and sensitive issue of gangs and gang membership with young people between the ages of 9 and 11. This programme has been funded by The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.

You can find out more about all these programme by clicking the links above, or by downloading the brochure from the Language Alive! page, where you can also find the booking forms. Please get in touch if you’d like any more information.

 

admin
June 14th, 2011

25 years of bringing the curriculum to life

September sees Language Alive!‘s 25th year of bringing the curriculum to life across Birmingham and the West Midlands.

We’ve just released next year’s programmes which are available to book. Apologies for the delay – funding, as you’d appreciate, has been a bit scarce, but we’ve been able to raise enough to keep school contributions the same as last year.

We’ve also been able to attract funding for some exciting new work. The Arts Council has supported two linked tours this year – Peep! and Mosaic (click to find out more information). Both will be distinct programmes, but both will explore ways of creating theatre that is more accessible to a wider range of children. Peep! is available to Nursery, Reception and Year 1, and Mosaic for Years 2 & 3.

Another exciting project will be taking place at the evocative Moseley Road Baths. Pool of Memories will use the stories collected from the local community to explore the history of this fascinating building, and is part of a wider Heritage Lottery-funded project being run by the Friends of Moseley  Road Baths – you can find out about that project at www.poolofmemories.co.uk.

Paper Chase is a project that might seem familiar to some schools, but we’ve submitted a bid to the Clore Poetry and Literature Awards to build on previous work to make best use of enhanced digital audio technology and interactive resources. The aim is to offer greater support for the teaching of literacy, andprovide children with a dramatic impetus to create their own original poetry.

Some of our most popular tours are also making a return, such as our Key Stage 1 bullying and relationships programme No Kidding, and our Early Years numeracy piece Little Red Hen. There’s a strong selection of historical work too, with 7-11 year olds taken back to Tudor Times to explore the story of Anne Boleyn and Where there’s smoke… transporting them to the Great Fire of London. For Years 5 & 6 Saving Hope will explore the human stories around the outbreak of the plague.

You can find out more about all these programme by clicking the links above, or by downloading the brochure from the Language Alive! page, where you can also find the booking forms. Please get in touch if you’d like any more information.

admin
June 14th, 2010

Next year’s primary tours now available!

We’ve now planned all the Foundation and Primary tours for the next academic year, including some exciting new projects and the return of some old favourites.

Climb aboard!

For Early Years Just imagine… is an innovative new Early Years programme that is being developed through a partnership between The Play House and Birmingham Rep.  A series of story-making sessions are currently being conducted in Early Years settings , and the ideas generated by children in these sessions will be used to create a unique child-led story, inviting children to step into the world of the story and to imagine, play and create for themselves. Climb Aboard sees the return of Jim and his grandma Fernanda, who find the Jamaica Case full of precious things from Fernanda’s life as a girl in Jamaica. Jim and the children explore the objects as they are removed from the case and are taken on a journey back to her childhood…

Into the Garden, inspired by Oscar Wilde's The Selfish Giant

Key stage 1 has two popular programmes make stheir return. Fit for a King transports infants to the court of Prince Yannis, one of the unhealthiest, laziest and most unhygienic princes ever. Recruited by Yannis’ long-suffering personal chef, Cookie, the pupils must transform his lifestyle before the prince will be allowed to be crowned King Yannis. And using Oscar Wilde’s original story of The Selfish Giant as its inspiration and integrating shadow play, puppetry and storytelling, Into the Garden follows what happens when a group of children decide to ignore the ‘Keep Out’ signs the Giant has put up around his garden and show him what he’s been missing…

Thanks to the Arts Council and Birmingham City Council there are a few new programmes for Key Stage 2. Spinning a Yarn is a new and exciting programme for Years 3 & 4 that tells the story of Hans Christian Anderson’s Emperor’s New Clothes. Through an exciting blend of storytelling, participation and the hands-on exploration of textile techniques, participants explore human rights and global citizenship. Inspired by the traditional story of Jack and the Beanstalk, Bag of Beans is a new and innovative numeracy and storytelling programme for Years 3 & 4 .  The trials that Jack encounters in this tale become a frame for the children’s participation, and provide a  series of challenges and tasks which involve the children applying the principals of mathematics and logic.

All Good Things, our site-specific programme taking place at BMAG's amazing Collection Centre

Following on from our extremely well-received tour of Tapestry for 13-18s, On the Edge is an exciting new participatory performance for 9 – 11 year olds which explores the implications and consequences of extremism. Younger children have less direct experience of extremism and their ideas, opinions and awareness around this issue are generally less well formed. On the Edge will draw on stories such as William Tell, Robin Hood and The Gunpowder Plot to create an original story through which children will explore questions such as: Do the ends justify the means, who do you believe and is there ever a case for taking the law into your own hands?

Stargazing

We’re able to revisit BMAG’s amazing Collection Centre in the Spring with the return of All Good Things… The Collection Centre is a treasure trove of history and science artifacts, and we creat an exciting drama which will take children on a unique journey back in time as characters from Birmingham’s industrial and scientific past come back to tell their stories and plead their case. And rounding of our Key Stage 2 programmes will be another history tour. Stargazing transports children to a dusty loft in Florence during 1633 to wait for the great scientist and astronomer Galileo to arrive and address them.  As they wait they meet Andrea, the child of Galileo’s housekeeper, and together begin to practically explore Galileo’s theories  using the models and notes that the great man has left lying around.  Their experimentation is interrupted when they learn that Galileo has been arrested as a heretic…

You can find full details of all our tours next year if you go to theplayhouse.org.uk/languagealive

admin
May 26th, 2010

Nearly there!

Welcome to the new website. Pardon our appearance whilst we tidy up!

We’re not quite finished yet. There’s still a few bits that don’t work quite how we want them to, and other bits we still need to add (come back next term and hopefully we’ll have some activities for the Interactive WhiteBoard too). Hopefully when we’re done we’ll have a truly interactive resource to support learning, and with fun activities for young people too.

It’s designed to grow though. Each new project will have it’s own mini-site, and we need your help too. You’ll be able to comment on activities, and help us develop by suggesting your own activites to add ours. It’s not quite working yet, but you’ll also be able to embed our activities on your own sites too.

In the mean time have a look at our current tour sites.

Our current Language Alive! tours:

  • Little Red Hen is our  Early Years programme, with lots of numeracy ideas and activities.
  • Where there’s smoke… explores the Great Fire of London with 5-7 year olds, with some great interactive activites
  • No Kidding looks at bullying with 5-7 year olds (sorry, we’ve not had time to develop a full website, but there’s a resource pack to download with lots of useful ideas)

 Also touring:

  • Tapestry is our successful tour for 13-18 year olds exploring the implications and consequences of extremism. (At present there’s a link to a temporary website, but this will be integrated into our new site soon.)

Please let us kow what you think think, either through the comment links or the contact page. Thanks!