Drama Warmup Games / Activities
In Drama, our body, face, and voice are the tools we use to create characters, stories, and they help us to convey emotion and connect with others. Just like an athlete, actors move our bodies outside the usual range of motion, so we need to warm up our muscles before we launch into action.
This is why every Drama class starts with a warmup that gets our bodies, voices, and minds ready to go! Beyond the benefits of getting blood flow to our minds and bodies, a good warmup also helps us to let go of any tension, anxiety, or nervousness we might be experiencing about not knowing anyone, looking silly, being judged, or not being 'good' at something.
One warmup activity that is great for letting go of tension and creating a stronger mind/body connection to enhance coordination is 'Countdown Shakedown'.
In this game, we all follow Sam as he counts down, first nice and slowly from 10-1, whilst shaking his right hand in the air. Then he repeats the countdown, this time with his left hand. We move through a sequence of shaking right hand, left hand, right foot, left foot whilst counting and when we get back to the start we count from 9-1 and go faster each time. The end result is a count of 1 for each shake at a super-speedy pace, and we end by all yelling something silly really loud, like "rubber chicken!"
As you can see, this warmup requires quite a few skills - concentration, timing, coordination, and listening. At the same time, it is warming up our body and voice and perhaps most importantly, we are all working in unison, looking and sounding a little bit silly and forgetting to be self-conscious or nervous as we try to keep up.
Doing this simple warmup maximises fun whilst also fostering a sense of connection within the group. You could do it at home with your child before doing a physical activity together, letting your child lead the count!