Title page




Table of content


Justification of study

Scope and limitation of study

Research method


Chapter one

1.1       definition of Terms

1.1.1  theatre

1.1.2  development

1.1.3  developing the whole child

1.2       drama and education

1.3       stages to drama and education


Chapter two

2.1 using drama and theatre to promote child’s development


Chapter three

3.1 the background information of University demonstration secondary school

3.2 the philosophy of drama and theatre in activities in U.D.S.S

3.2.1 entertainment

3.2.2 cultural influence

3.2.3 language

3.2.4 competition

3.2.5 to widen the scope of the student

3.3 the basic facilities for drama and theatre in U.D.S.S

3.3.1 space

3.3.2 play selection

3.3.3. costume and make-up

3.3.4 directing techniques

3.3.5 acting techniques

3.3.6 fund

3.3.7 parent Negative attitude


Chapter four

4.1 drama and theatre as a tool for children’s development

4.2 the practice of drama and theatre in U.D.S.S

4.3 the problems of drama and theatre in U.D.S.S


Chapter five

5.1 conclusion



This research work examines the effects of drama and theatre practice for children’s development, using the study of University Demonstration Secondary school programme, as a case study.

Chapter one largely introduces the Genesis of children’s theatre, definition of terms, and the stages of drama and education.

Chapter two will examine effects of drama and theatre practice or activities for children’s development.

Chapter three focuses on the historical survey of U.D.S.S the philosophy of drama and theatre in U.D.S.S and also basic facilities available for the practice of drama.

Chapter four deals with the tools of drama and theatre also the problems of drama and theatre in U.D.S.S

Chapter five looks at the way forward, conclusion and bibliography.


My major reason and intension of writing this project, is to draw the attention of our leaders today to know the effectives and importance of drama and theatre activities in the lives of our young ones and its contributions to the growth and development in society.

Also to know the usefulness of theatre for young people in child’s development. Using the University Demonstration Secondary School as a case study.

I wish to inspire the use of this method and system of child development and education in other schools.

This project will go a long way to inspire the spirit of professionalism and the relationship between teachers and student in child oriented activities. This work will be a contribution to the purpose of Drama and theatre practice as a tool from children development.


For meaning development to take place in any given society the education of the citizenry is considered to be of immense significance. This is particularly important with regards to the youth who as usually considered the leaders of tomorrow. It is against this back of drop that this study sets out to examine the effects of drama and theatre practice for children’s development using university Demonstration secondary school as a case study.

This study among other consideration, shall examine how and why drama and theatre are used for child’s upbringing and in the Nigeria secondary school system with a viewed to determining the benefits derived from such an undertaking.


This study concern essentially with the benefit that can be derived from the practice of drama and theatre in the secondary school system.

In this regards, this research shall focus on the potency and effectiveness of using drama and theatre practice in bringing up children to be responsible members of the society.

Whereas, this work shall attempt a general over view of drama and theatre in the Nigeria school system, University Demonstration Secondary School University of Port-Harcourt shall constituted our point of particular references.


The materials used for this project work haven been gathered through collection of ideas, filed work, library method of research and through the use of internet.

With regards to field work, this study has an oral interview with persons closely associated with drama and theatre programme in University Demonstration Secondary School (U.D.S.S) University of Port-Harcourt; also from my own pasted experience during my teaching practice with some student in the school. Apart from interviewing student and teachers alike this researcher has also depended on empirical research methodology through direct personal observation of the student in their participation in theatrical activities.


          Child – drama and theatre practices is based on sincerity, concentration, observation, imagination and absorpted participation of child in the various activities. The preoccupation of teachers or instructor in child; this includes not only the physical but this mental and emotions responses. One of the approaches to grooming the child in child – drama and theatre activities is through engendering the concept of sincerity and absorption in the activities carried out.

If these qualities mentioned above are developed in child – drama activities he or she is more likely to grow to become a personality who takes care of himself and job seriously. It may also lead to habits of honesty and frankness and job seriously. It may also lead to habits of honesty and frankness wrapped up in what is being done or what one is doing to exclusion of all other thought including the awareness of or desire of an audience.

Unlike creative drama for children, this kind of theatre for children requires the audience. Again this kind of creative dramatic children could be asked to enact a story that they just been told whereas in children theatre there has to be a script learnt through rehearsal co-ordinated by a leader. Also children theatre is defined as an improvisational drama in which children are guided to imagine, enact reflect upon human experience. They are guided to explore express and communicate ideas concert and feeling through dramatic experiences.



Drama according to Oxford dictionary is a play for stage or broadcasting or an art of writing, acting or presenting plays.

Term ‘’Drama’’ is derived from the Greek word ‘’Dremenon’’ which means ‘’To Act’’ or To Do’’. It can apply to any mime action but it commonly refers to stage presentation.

Indeed drama is used as a medium for effective education and the development of creativity. Drama is unique tool to explore and express human feeling, and drama is also defined as essential forms of behaviour in all cultures, it is a fundamental human activity. Drama is a discrete skill in itself.

Definition of Drama from Aristotelian perspective

Aristotelian declared drama as

Any imitation of an action of high magnitude complete and of some amplitude in language as well as enhanced by district and varying beauty acted not narrated which invokes emotional pity and tears with intent to effect the purgation these emotions.

1.1.1  THEATRE

          The word ‘’Theatre’’ from Oxford dictionary is a building or outdoor area for dramatic performance, or writing and production of plays.

The term theatre is a word derived from Greek word ‘’theatron’’ meaning a place of seeing.

The word theatre initially means or describes as an architectural structure selected or built to house dramatic offering, though it could also accommodate any type of presentation.

Theatre also suggest a certain type of social and aesthetic experience recognizable more by it specific purpose. It differs from education in the sense that it does not by itself suggest, rather is a method, a way of doing something. Therefore theatre and education simply mean or refers to an attempt to apply to techniques and convention which characterized theatre to pursuit of education benefits or objectives.


          Development is the study of growth and change of behaviour across the life span.

Development of many behaviour proceeds according to orderly sequences usually begins with simple behaviours and progress to more complex behaviours.

One of the sequences involves the unfolding of moter development and locomotion in infants.


          Child development as an integrated process. The early childhood teacher is aware that a young child’s development is a complex continuous and uneven process involving all facets of the child’s experience, the teachers understanding of how children learn include a recognition that all development is emerging and related to the situational factors of heredity, background, experience, and that is less than optional conditions in one area of development to another (e.g. recognizing the effects of self-esteem on social and incoherent development). The teacher know how to create a learning environment based on child choice in which activities that takes advantage of children strength and interest are used to enhance development.


The man who started drama in education is called (Jeorge Baker). He teaches English and a lecturer in Harvard University. He left English class and stated with playwriting work, and he called it (47 workshop), it was a practical course and it has the technique of playwriting. The purpose of this practical workshop was to encourage the student to write plays and use them for plays production, from this playwriting exercise, Baker added criticism (playwriting production and critism).

When play has been produced, he added what is called literally appreciation.

Through this experiment, they incorporated what they have done to curriculum of the school. This is how drama in education was formed by George Baker, in America.

This course became very popular and spread to many America Universities and many America Universities adopted drama in education to teach.

From America, this idea in drama in education spread to other countries in the world, like English and other parts of Europe and as a result of these, many Europeans Universities adopted drama in education.

One of these universities that started drama in English is called Bristol. The idea of drama spread to oxford University in England, and one of those who embraced drama in Nigeria is a man called Geoffrey Asworthy in (Ibadan), Groffrey is the first man to establish drama in Ibadan and they started it with diploma in Ibadan; it was a course for 2 years and his purpose of introducing this system of drama in education is to raise fund for the less privileged and the handicap.


There are two basic modes of education – formal and informal education, and drama has a part to play in both.

Informal education takes place accidentally before school begins, outside the influence of school, and when schooling has been completed. Perharps its most important element for a very young child is play: the mother plays with the child and the child plays alone. It is within play that the roots of drama lie. As psychologists have pointed out, play is a vital part of the learning process. Play plunges the child into the exploration of things through touching, testing smelling, looking, listening and manipulating.

Thus the learns the nature of the material with world e.g. children develop their physical skills by crouching, walking, running, jumping, dancing etc. they learn to develop the ability to understand and use language through listening to stories, talking to themselves, their parents and toys. Etc. a play is an inborn and vial part of young life. Peter Slade in his book Child drama talks about ‘’personal and projected’’ play.

In personal play, children begin to learn their future roles by watching and imitating parents and other people they come in contact with e.g. Assuming the role of mother, father, king, policeman etc. in ‘’projected’’ play the use object and symbols, a pebble becomes a motor car, a stick becomes gun etc.


Paul Henry Musen, (1972) Child Development and Personality: 3rd Ed. Harper and Row Publishers New York

Peter, R.S. (1981) Essays on Education: George Allen and Uniwin Ltd London.

Dr. Obuh S. (2002): Children Theatre Note Book Nigeria. Theatre Arts University of Port Harcourt.

Rosemary Birbeck, et al, ‘’Theatre in Education’’ John Russell, (ed)…Music Drama in Schools. Cambridge University press 1971 (pg, 150)

  1. S. Hormby (1948:226): Oxford Advanced Dictionary: Oxford University press.


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