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Drama and Feelings: How Acting Helps Kids Understand Emotions

Have you ever watched your child struggle with big feelings and wished you could help them navigate the ups and downs of their emotional journey? Or maybe yourself as a parent or teacher Have felt overwhelmed by your emotions, struggling to understand and express what you're feeling? If so, you're not alone. Many of us, myself included, have grappled with the challenge of navigating our emotions, especially during our younger years.

As we celebrate Children's Activity Week and Mental Health Awareness Week concurrently, it's crucial to acknowledge the profound impact that creative activities, like drama classes, can have on children's emotional well-being. In this blog post, we'll delve into how drama classes serve as a transformative platform for children to recognise, understand, and express their feelings.

As someone who was once very sensitive and struggled with managing my own emotions during my younger years, I understand firsthand the challenges that children may face in navigating their feelings. Drama played a pivotal role in helping me overcome these difficulties. Through acting and role-playing, I discovered a safe space where I could explore different emotions, express myself freely, and learn to understand the emotions of others. Drama not only provided me with valuable skills for emotional awareness and expression but also helped me develop confidence and resilience in facing life's challenges.

Understanding Emotional Intelligence:

Emotional intelligence, often abbreviated as EI or EQ, encompasses the ability to recognise, understand, and manage one's own emotions, as well as to recognise and influence the emotions of others. It's a skill set that plays a fundamental role in navigating life's challenges, building healthy relationships, and fostering resilience.

The Role of Drama Classes:

Drama classes provide a dynamic environment where children can explore a wide range of emotions in a safe and supportive space. Through various acting exercises, role-playing scenarios, and improvisation activities, children learn to embody different emotions, perspectives, and experiences. Here are a few ways you can help a child to acknowledge their feelings:

Emotion Charades:

Play a game of charades where children act out different emotions without using words. This activity helps them practice expressing emotions through facial expressions, body language, and gestures.

Emotion Mapping:

Provide children with a variety of emotion words (e.g., happy, sad, angry, surprised) and ask them to create improvised scenes or tableaus depicting each emotion. Encourage them to explore the physical and vocal aspects of each emotion.

Emotion Thermometer:

Create a large "emotion thermometer" poster with a range of emotions from low to high intensity (e.g., calm, content, excited, furious). During improvisation exercises, ask children to identify and place themselves on the thermometer based on how intensely they feel a particular emotion.

Emotion Observation:

Show short video clips or images depicting people experiencing different emotions. Pause the video or image and ask children to describe what they observe in terms of facial expressions, body language, and tone of voice. Discuss how these cues help identify emotions.

Emotion Journaling:

Provide children with emotion journals where they can write or draw about their own feelings before, during, and after drama activities. Encourage them to reflect on what triggers certain emotions and how they express them.

By integrating these practical tips into class or at home, teachers and parents can help children develop essential skills for recognising, understanding, and expressing their feelings in a creative and supportive environment. Through these activities, children not only enhance their acting abilities but also deepen their emotional intelligence, laying the foundation for healthy emotional development and well-being.

Join Us for "Watch Me Fly" Sessions:

To celebrate Children's Activity Week, we're hosting special "Watch Me Fly" sessions in our community classes this week. These sessions are designed to inspire children to unleash their creativity, express themselves boldly, and soar to new heights through the magic of drama. Don't miss this opportunity to ignite your child's imagination and nurture their emotional intelligence in a fun and engaging environment! Book here to reserve your spot today.


As we celebrate both Children's Activity Week and Mental Health Awareness Week, let's recognise the invaluable role that drama classes play in nurturing children's emotional intelligence and promoting their overall well-being. By empowering children to recognise, understand, and express their feelings, drama provides not only a creative outlet but also a powerful tool for building resilience, fostering empathy, and cultivating lifelong skills for emotional health and success.

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