The benefits of drama and play

Every day our teachers witness first-hand the benefits of drama for young children - and you could join them by running your own Pyjama Drama business. If you're passionate about the benefits of drama for children in their early years, why not find out how joining Pyjama Drama could work for you?

1. Drama builds confidence
Even the shyest of children take just a few weeks to gently build up their self-esteem and before long they are confident to take a full and active part in sessions. A few weeks is all it takes.

2. Drama helps concentration
In every session, children are encouraged to listen to each other's ideas and thoughts and to take turns. These activities allow children to recognise the value of concentration; a skill that is vital in the world outside their home.

3. Drama helps develop language and communication skills
Learning new songs, playing new games and participating in pretend play (when children must take on the language of the role they are playing), all contribute to a child's developing vocabulary. They are encouraged to express themselves both verbally and through facial expression and body language; the key to making them better communicators.

4. Drama encourages children to cooperate
Every activity in Pyjama Drama, from playing drama games to improvisation to singing together, requires cooperation. Children quickly realise that to get the best out of sessions, cooperation is a much-needed skill!

5. Drama supports numeracy skills
In Pyjama Drama children don't ever guess they are learning. Counting the number of beats in a song, counting the number of stars on a camping trip or working out how many eggs to put in a cake are just a few examples of how being involved in a drama can help to develop essential numeracy skills.

6. Drama helps children to understand the world around them
We explore a range of different themes and introduce children to a variety of real and imaginary situations each week, sparking their interest in the world in which they live and making them more inquisitive (and therefore more interesting!) little people.

7. Drama develops emotional intelligence
By encouraging children to 'act out' a range of emotions in the safe and supportive environment of a Pyjama Drama class, children are better able to understand their feelings and develop empathy for others.

8. Drama assists physical development
In each session, we play simple percussion instruments, create simple movement sequences and play drama games - all designed to help children gain mastery over their growing bodies.

9. Drama develops creativity
Creative people can view things in new ways and from different perspectives. They can think on their feet and generate new ideas. Our child-led approach to improvisation and pretend play encourages the development of creativity as children lead the direction of the drama themselves, come up with solutions to problems in role, and respond imaginatively to a range of pretend situations.

10. Drama nurtures friendships
By its very nature drama can create strong bonds between children as they laugh, learn and grow together week after week after week!

Sarah Owen, the creator and founder of Pyjama Drama, has many years' experience of teaching drama to children. If you are a teacher, nursery, school or LEA looking for advice, support or training on any aspect of drama for young children, please do get in touch.