Undercurrent Education: breathing new life into learning through theatre

Undercurrent specialise in research-based theatre productions and workshops. Our professional actors and directors partner with schools to deliver curriculum-focused learning for pupils of all ages, engaging the children in a creative experience that brings to life their curriculum subject in an exciting and refreshing new way.

Our workshops are designed to bring thrill, energy and magic to curriculum subjects, while never losing sight of the learning goals at their core.


When we came to deliver the project Undercurrent did so with a great deal of
professionalism providing a learning experience that was incredibly good fun and
stimulating for the young people involved. Of particular value was the fact that the
project incorporated so many learning styles and areas of the curriculum all under a
creative banner… Above all we really felt that the project, and in particular the influence
of Undercurrent, helped to develop the confidence of the young people and engage
them in their education.”
TC Jefferson, Project Development Manager, Creative Partnerships
We have used Undercurrent several times with our Year 7 group on Special Study days when students concentrate on a personal and/or social issue for the day. Year 7 topic was ‘Friendship and Bullying’ and Undercurrent ran workshops throughout the day encouraging students to explore issues relating to this topic. Students thoroughly enjoyed the workshops which were planned to run in a professional manner and added an important extra dimension to the day. As a result of the successful sessions with Year 7 they are running a series of workshops for Year 9 pupils later in the year. I would happily recommend them to other school groups.”
Doreen Baker, Head of Year 7, Kingdown Community College

Secondary School:

Undercurrent Process - a close look at our creative process, showcasing techniques from the rehearsal room to give insight into how we make our shows.


New Approaches to Devising – drawing on skills Undercurrent use in their artistic practice, this workshop shares practical tools and starting points to kick start devising. 


Improvisation and Theatre Making - techniques for adapting stories for the stage & the principles of creating dramatic narrative structures.

 

 

P1010495 copy 2.JPG

Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE)

In line with the curriculum’s PSHE we offer courses that bring to light the areas of concern within young society, serving to open up lines of communication and help young people to make informed, educated decisions.

Past courses have included:

- Drug Awareness (Key stage 3 & 4)

- Sexual Health (Key Stage 3 & 4)

- Bullying and Friendship (Key stage 3)

- Citizenship (Key Stage 4)

Cross Curricular Development Programme – ‘Whodunnit’

Designed in collaboration with Creative Partnerships, ‘Whodunnit’ is a cross curricular programme combining Science, Maths, English, Geography and Drama with various aspects of PSHE. 

… incredibly good fun and stimulating for the young people… the project incorporated many learning styles and areas of the curriculum all under a creative banner and helped to develop the confidence of the young people and engage them in their education.” Creative Partnerships


Primary School:

The following workshops span Reception through to Year Six, across spring, summer and autumn terms. Each age group enjoys a different experience tailored to their curriculum. Here are some examples of workshops previously delivered in schools:

Years One and Two

Pirate Adventure

This maritime adventure stimulates creativity, team work, and problem-solving, while teaching pupils about the world’s oceans. Tasks include: dig for treasure, learn to speak like a pirate, discover your pirate name and create your own pirate hat and badge.

Reception and Year One

Carnival of the animals

Geography, nature and the unfamiliar are all touch points in this colourful workshop. Centred around four animals and a circus master, with costumes and a final parade through your school, Carnival of the Animals helps to engender confidence as well as basic learning among new school starters.

Years Three and Four; Five and Six

Anglo Saxons and Vikings/ The Shang Dynasty

History Reloaded, our workshop for older years, follows a format easily adaptable to any era, involving mysterious time travellers and a huge amount of curriculum-based learning. Using the story of a woman who has arrived from the future to collect historical facts, with plenty of goodies and baddies thrown in, it encourages children to engage with culture, history, logic, team work, logic, english, maths, ICT, craft, music and dance. 

Years Two and Three

Lighthouses

History and team work are the main lessons in this workshop, which brings to life the story of Grace Darling, the intrepid lighthouse dweller who saved nine men from certain death by sailing out in a rowing boat at night. Parachutes, waves, water and the past come together in this immersive experience.


“Thank you very much for coming to our school on special study day. We had a really good time and everyone enjoyed themselves. We especially enjoyed the ‘Jerry Springer Show’ because it brought fun to learning about drugs. We found it interesting to hear everyone’s point of view and it was really fun. I think Drama is a much better way of learning because lots of people get involved.”

Year 9 students, Kingdown Community College

 

“Undercurrent provided an excellent workshop for my AS and A2 students, giving them an entirely new theatrical language in which to work. Whilst never being so complicated that any felt it was out of their grasp, technique was taught in a way that left the students wide eyed and open mouthed. I wouldn't hesitate to book them again next year.”

Robert Messik, Berkhamstead Collegiate School