Today was the first lesson back after the New Year for the Drama Communication course, and as usual it was a heady mix of fun, energy, and utter chaos. The students will be performing to the general public in just over a month, and so the remaining lessons will be concerned with using what we have learnt so far to put together an interesting performance piece, which engages the audience and makes them think about the relationship between scientists and the general public. Essential to this process was today’s warm up activity, which basically involved behaving like psychotic rabbits.
This week I wanted the students to experience what it was like to have to think on their feet, concocting a presentation with minimal preparation. Therefore I split the group into two, and gave them 20 minutes to come up with compelling arguments for and against Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT), which will be the focus of next month’s performance. Both groups gave incredibly interesting presentations, with the anti-ECT group delivering a somber ‘talking heads’ style eulogy, whilst the pro-ECT team delivered a more light hearted mini-drama, which featured me (or at least their impression of me) visiting a hospital with my mentally deranged daughter. Given such little preparation, I was heartened by the results; at any rate they certainly left me with food for thought.