About The Helen O’Grady Drama Academy
The Helen O’Grady Drama Academy was founded in Perth, Australia in September 1979. Helen O’Grady was a television presenter and she frequently had children visit her TV set who couldn’t communicate clearly or effectively. Her aim was to provide a drama programme for children to help them develop their speech and language skills while boosting their confidence and self esteem. To this day her programme is helping children around the world to become confident and articulate adults.
What Are Our Visions and Values?
Using a professional curriculum, the Academy aims to create and develop the following:
- Speech and language skills
- Confidence and self esteem
- Enthusiasm, energy and a positive approach to life
- Skill in verbal and physical communication
Effective social interaction and improvement in listening skills The Helen O’Grady Drama programme is all about the self-development of children. The programme is unique in that it uses drama as a tool to aid this self-development. It encompasses an exciting, carefully crafted curriculum and allows children to develop communication skills, ongoing confidence and, so, vital life skills. Though the Helen O’Grady Drama Programme, children learn verbal and non-verbal communication skills, enabling them to understand the importance of the spoken word and also body language. Among other things, they improvise plays, create stories, develop characters and work with scripted pieces, as well as making new friends and having fun! The creative method of teaching facilitates schools in meeting the individual needs of students whilst teachers foster children’s creativity and inspire confidence and a commitment to learning.
How Does Drama Help in the Development of Children?
- Drama is a tool to facilitate teaching of life skills, communication skills, confidence and eye contact. It fosters creativity, encourages and stimulates children to gain the best possible progress and attainment in all core subjects. Building on the natural interests of children, drama and role play develops confidence and their desire to push themselves forward in all areas of learning.
- Drama affords opportunities to work both collaboratively and independently.
- Drama provides rich and varied contexts for students to acquire, develop and apply a broad range of knowledge, understanding and skills.
- Drama scenarios help students deal with difficult moral and social questions which rise in their lives and in society in general.
- The Helen O’Grady drama programme encourages children to safely explore situations outside of their everyday experience; to learn how to speak to different people in different situations and to be heard above the crowd.
- Our programme enables students to think creatively and critically, to solve problems and to make a difference for the better. Through drama they will have many opportunities to become creative and to learn leadership skills.
The Helen O’Grady Drama Programme encompasses a 9-year cycle for children aged 3 to 12. Each lesson has its own unique curriculum, specially crafted for that lesson, together with a specific lesson plan. As a result of this extensive, original, programme it is possible for a child to attend our weekly classes for all 9 years, and never repeat a lesson. Above all the classes are fun wherein every child is given an opportunity to shine and trained to be a ‘star’ of his/her chosen field.
At the end of the Academy Year, kids present a short, scripted production. Achievement certificates are awarded to all students for each full year of attendance, with special recognition for other major milestones.
Enthusiastic participation in each lesson is encouraged by Helen O’Grady’s teachers in Cyprus. Cathia, Martynas, Georgia, Katy and Carola will take care that each lesson is carefully planned and includes: introductory activities, speech, verbal dynamics, creative movement, dance, drama, language development, structured improvisation, dialogue development, snippets, scene starters and mini scripts. Helen O’Grady teachers undergo regular intensive training by experienced training managers responsible for the training of all Helen O’Grady Academies worldwide; thus, all our teachers are accredited by Helen O’Grady. In this way, Helen O’Grady Academy Cyprus ensures that all children receive the same quality of teaching as any Helen O’Grady child anywhere in the world. All teachers are trained to develop personal rapport with each student, and Jolanta, the Academy Principal, ensures the highest standards are maintained by providing regular feedback to the parents on the improvement of their child’s skills.