Gaza: As part of the CCG 2019 Spring cycle, students participate in the Drama in a Learning Context programme events
Gaza – (A.M. Qattan Foundation):
Dozens of children engaged in a drama space through an encounter organised by the Child Centre – Gaza (CCG). As part of the Drama in a Learning Context programme, the encounter prompted thinking and provoked questions, empowering children to be open to, and combine, imaginative experiences with reality.
In encounters, participants imagined that their city was affected by a natural disaster, namely, a flood, exposing them to limited choices. Inevitably, children had to make a decision within 48 hours: either they stay and protect the city using all possible means or they leave at once.
All children coincided to leave the city immediately. Only one student decided to stay, however. This scenario gave rise to the important issue of “youth migration”. It raised an interesting and worthwhile question: “What is the homeland? What role do we play to protect it?”
Divided into three groups, children created effective ideas and solutions to the shape of the safe city, which is resilient to natural disasters or wars. In their imagination, children painted their city, which they are resolved to protect in the aftermath of the flood. They implemented needed measures and policies to reduce disaster risks in the future and improve the lives of the city inhabitants.
Working groups included experts in architecture, who played a role in rebuilding homes, dwellings, health centres, education institutions, and establishments. These structures are strong enough to stand in the face of any risks. They are equipped with alarm systems, escape stairs, and solid infrastructure, including shelters, an urban subway, etc.
The second working group brought together a number of experts, researchers, and scientists, who provided studies and research papers on the causes of, and solutions to, disasters from a scientific perspective.
Enacting relevant legislation, the third group deemed it necessary to pass laws and regulations to protect the environment. The group promulgated a new law, providing for using renewable solar energy in all means of transportation. The law also states that ministries will be established, such as the Ministry of Environment Protection and Science and Ministry of Disaster Resilience.
Mahmoud Muhanna, a 13-year-old student and participant in the programme, said he benefited a lot from this experience: “Today’s encounter provoked my mind and feelings. It made me think and express myself more.” Agreeing with Mahmoud, Mohammed Frawnah, 13 years old, said: “I am eager for the next encounter. We will practice a drama performance of the city, which we imagined today.”
The programme allows children an opportunity to engage in drama in a learning context, using the mantle of the expert as a drama technique. Drama in a learning context is used in role play, criticism of action in order to reach a shared vision, and adapt and develop some concepts by appointing children to decision-making and responsibility positions.
The programme also empowers students to produce drama performances as an outcome of the experience they engaged in over the course of their participation in the Drama in a Learning Context programme. Students present these performances to their parents in the presence, and with the participation, of their school managements.
In the 2019 Spring cycle, the CCG has been implementing the Drama in a Learning Context programme since early February 2019. Running through 15 April 2019, the programme brings together 38 students from the Salah al-Din Preparatory School and Al-Rimal Boys Preparatory School A.