Star turns

2nd June 2000 at 01:00
School: Castlehill Primary, Fife. Pupil roll 670. Headteacher Andrew Kilgariff. Children involved: four P7 classes plus visiting school pupils.

What was the best arts company to visit your school in the past year?

First Bite.

How did you hear about them?

Fife Council's education development officer, Sandie Steele, arranged the visit for us and several visiting smaller schools to help the pupils integrate ahead of moving up to secondary school.

What did they do?

There were two performers, one male, one female, one Scottish and one English. They put on two performances of My Turn, a drama dealing with various aspects of bullying.

They didn't use props other than chairs and they stationed themselves in the centre of the floor with the children seated all around.

Did you do any preparation work beforehand?

Yes, we had been sent a script beforehand and we discussed the bullying issues with the children, who are doing a project called "Living and Growing" in personal and social development lasses.

Did you do any follow-up work?

Yes, we were given lesson plans and we talked about what the children had seen and how they could develop their own strategies for dealing with such issues.

Also, we had to fill out an evaluation sheet about the visit.

What was so good about the visit?

They were very, very well prepared and highly professional. The lack of props didn't matter at all: the children were totally absorbed because the performances were so convincing. They were just very skilful performers.

We've had various performing groups visit the school and this was definitely one of the most effective.

How relevant was it to the curriculum?

It matched our PSD project perfectly.

And we do a lot of drama in class. It enhanced the children's understanding of drama skills.

How much did the visit cost?

It didn't cost the schools anything. Fife Council paid for it under their raising attainment programme.

Contact Rebecca Kilbey, First Bite, tel 0131 225 7993

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