Task 3: Theatre In Education Research

What Is Theatre In Education?

Theatre In Education are performances aimed at young children at schools where the purpose of the piece is to teach them a subject and topic that is off their current curriculum. Richard Cope (no date) wrote that a T.I.E piece would expect to involve the audience, so the children watching the piece may get involved either in the piece or in a workshop afterwards. Cope also stated that Theatre In Education started in 1965 by the Belgrade Theatre and specifically, Brian Gray. He started this idea before 1965 though, Laurence Harbottle (2006) stated that his passion for teaching children through theatre started long before 1965, releasing his book ‘Child Drama’ in 1946.

Cory Wilkerson (no date) wrote that the performers will improvise and write out their own T.I.E script which will have facts of the subject they are teaching in order to teach their audience. There are different ways that T.I.E pieces can be set out and as said by Wilkerson, that can be through scenes that are improvised by the actors, workshops, games and forum theatre influenced by my chosen practitioner, Augusto Boal.


  • Hobgoblin Theatre Company– This company from Surrey was formed in 2007 and their shows are different depending on which key stage they are performing to. Reception and Key Stage 1 has the topic of fairytales (including Hansel and Gretel and Little Red Riding Hood) and Key Stage 2 focus on history topics (such as WW2, Tudors and Romans). Whole school shows are also offered where more subjects are offered including numeracy, literacy and Christmas shows. In terms of learning materials, workshops are carried out for each Key Stage after their performance, which is why they state on their website that they only have a maximum of 90 in their audience. Other learning materials include a work pack which is available to get off their website as well. For WW2, their work pack has: a timeline, key figures and the life of a soldier. The company state on their website which part of the curriculum they cover for schools who are wishing to book them, for example, Hansel and Gretel is part of Literacy, PHSE and Traditional tales.
  • The Takeaway Theatre Company– Takeaway, like Hogbgoblin were formed in 2007 and so far, have put up a schedule of their performances for this year. Currently, they are producing pieces with the purpose of teaching children about: Bullying for Key Stage 2 (Hope) and they will also run two workshops for the students to take part in, WW2 (During The War…) (History) along with season themed shows for Halloween (Spooky Halloween Pantomime) and Christmas (The Wizard of Oz).
  • Freshwater Drama Company– This company was formed by Carol Tagg and Helen Wood in 1996, London. Freshwater offer shows of a range of subjects that are part of the cirriculum: History, Geography, Science/ Maths, Storytelling/Shakespeare and Modern Foreign Languages. Each subject will have a show for key stage 1 and key stage 2. With each topic and lesson performance, it will state where in the country they perform it with the three options: Greater London/Essex, West Midlands/South West and Greater Manchester.
  • Loudmouth– With Loudmouth’s performing policy, the purpose of their pieces are to help children with PHSE and everyday issues and not the typical subjects such as history and geography. Specific topics they will cover include: bullying, alcohol and domestic abuse. They educate children of all levels (primary, secondary, college and special needs) and on each section, they highlight the issues that they will look to teach children. In terms of learning materials, when schools sign up for Loudmouth, they will gain online access to 100 lesson plans for a year.
  • Quantum Theatre– This company were formed in 1988 because they felt there was a lack of theatre in education training in numeracy and science specifically. Other subjects which they currently offer performances to are history (WW1/Battle of Somme), literacy, GCSE English and Christmas shows. For each of their shows, they state on their website the type of performance, what space they’ll need, the running time and audience limit. For example, to teach literacy, they have a play called ‘Grammar Girl’ which is for key stages 1 and 2. They ask for a space that is at least 15ft x 15ft which has plug sockets, the performance will last between 60 and 65 minutes and have an audience limit of 300. There are no other materials used for this play but for others (WW1), they have other materials such as songs, sketches and poetry in their piece.

Comparing Two T.I.E Companies:

Freshwater Drama Company offer performances, storytelling and workshops of a range of subjects, giving schools options. The subjects they cover are: history, geography, science/maths and storytelling.

For history, workshops are offered to key stage 1 and 2, some examples for key stage 1 are: The Great Fire of London, Victorian Schooldays and The Quest for Aztecs. Key stage 2 history workshops include: Ancient Egyptian Challenge, WW1 and The Romans Return. History shows are also offered with subjects including: Ancient Greek Adventure, Return of the Romans and Trapped in Tutor Times with separate workshops after the show. Some of the shows for Geography in key stage 1 are: St Lucia: An Overseas Locality, Where in the UK is Baxter Bear? and Weather and Seasons. There are workshops available for science and maths, some examples of the science workshops focus on are: electricity, healthy eating and space. Meanwhile, for maths, they have workshops based on: Number and time along with shape and pattern. It is not only subjects that they focus on, they also look at workshops on storytelling with stories including: The Rainbow Fish, The Prince and the Pauper and The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark.

In comparison, Loudmouth don’t give this option, instead of having performances on a range of subjects, they focus on PHSE and aim to create pieces which focus on issues that may effect their audiences in the future or could currently affect them. Some of their shows are suitable for all key stages, others are not, for all key stages, they offer pieces including ‘Bully 4 U’ (Bullying), One 2 Many (alcohol abuse) and ‘Safe and Sound’ (abuse from partners). Meanwhile, primary level performances include ‘Helping Hands’ (domestic abuse) and ‘Alco-Facts’ and secondary offers ‘My Mate Fancies You’ (Future physical and emotional changes) and ‘Trust Me’ (Teenage Pregnancy). While both companies offer performances to key stages 1 and 2, Loudmouth also go to special schools where they adapt pieces by slowing it down, changing the workshop and making the performance simpler. While both companies offer performances and workshops, as previously mentioned, Loudmouth offer 100 free lesson plans for a year to schools who sign up to their website.


Cope, R. (no date) A Brief History of Theatre In Education. Available at: http://www.beyondthedoor.co.uk/centrestage/tie2.htm (Accessed: 18 October 2016)

Wilkerson, C. (no date) Theatre In Education. Available at: http://dramainside.net/theatre_in_education.htm (Accessed: 18 October 2016)

Harbottle, L. (2006) Brian Way. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/news/2006/mar/21/guardianobituaries.artsobituaries (Accessed: 18 October 2016)

Hobgolbin Theatre Company:

No Author. (2015) Hobgolbin Theatre Company.  Available at: http://hobgoblintheatrecompany.co.uk/ (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (2015) Reception and Key Stage 1. Available at: hobgoblintheatrecompany.co.uk/key-stage-1-productions/4546008178 (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (2015) Key Stage 2. Available at: hobgoblintheatrecompany.co.uk/key-stage-2-history-plays/4546008186 (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (2015) Whole School Shows. Available at: hobgoblintheatrecompany.co.uk/shows-for-the-whole-school/4546008196 (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (2015) WW2 Workpack. Available at: hobgoblintheatrecompany.co.uk/ww2-workpack-title-page/4556737554 (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (2015) Hansel and Gretel. Available at: hobgoblintheatrecompany.co.uk/hansel-and-gretel/4546173064 (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) The Takeaway Theatre Company. Available at: http://www.takeawaytheatre.co.uk/ (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) “Hope”- Anti Bullying Workshop Tour ’16. Available at: www.takeawaytheatre.co.uk/hope.html (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) During The War… Available at: http://www.takeawaytheatre.co.uk/during_the_war.html (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) Spooky Halloween Pantomime. Available at: http://www.takeawaytheatre.co.uk/spooky_panto.html (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) School Pantomimes. Available at: http://www.takeawaytheatre.co.uk/school_pantomimes.html#pantomimes (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) Drama and dance workshops, shows and storytelling for schools – What we offer. Available at: http://www.freshwatertheatre.co.uk/schools.php (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) About Freshwater Theatre Company. Available at: http://www.freshwatertheatre.co.uk/about_us.php (Accessed 18 October 2016)

No author. (2015) Who Are We? Available at: http://loudmouth.co.uk/about-us/ (Accessed: 18 October 2016)

No author. (2015) All Programmes. Available at: http://loudmouth.co.uk/programmes/ (Accessed: 18 October 2016)

No author. (2015) Lesson Plans. Available at: http://loudmouth.co.uk/lesson-plans/ (Accessed: 18 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) About Us. Available at: http://www.quantumtheatre.co.uk/about-us/ (Accessed: 19 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) Topics at a Glance. Available at: http://www.quantumtheatre.co.uk/topics-at-a-glance/ (Accessed: 19 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) Grammar Girl. Available at: http://www.quantumtheatre.co.uk/grammargirl/ (Accessed: 19 October 2016)

No Author. (no date) The Battle of the Somme. Available at: http://www.quantumtheatre.co.uk/the-battle-of-the-somme/ (Accessed: 19 October 2016)

No author. (2015) Special Needs. Available at: http://loudmouth.co.uk/programmes/special-needs/ (Accessed: 19 October 2016)



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