Below is a case study from Reynella Primary School in Adelaide, illustrating how they use theatre in education to support their “Successful Learners Program”, which is designed to encourage a positive learning environment at the beginning of each school year. If you’d like to know more about how Brainstorm Productions can assist your school, please click here to contact one of our friendly team.

Reynella Primary School Case Study

By Karen Thorburn – Assistant Principal

Student wellbeing is one of the four focus areas of our Site Improvement Plan. On Wednesday 29th January 2014—our second day of school—students from Reception to Year 7 attended a performance called “The H Team” by the award-winning touring group Brainstorm Productions.

This performance forms part of our effort to promote positive relationships among our students, reduce bullying and encourage healthy active lifestyles. As usual it was totally subsidised by the school budget to ensure that every student could attend. The performance was a focus of our ‘Successful Learners Program’ which takes place during the first 2 weeks of every school year when teachers and students work together to establish a positive learning environment within their classroom to ensure that all members of the class community feel safe, secure and ready to be successful.

The “H” stands for health, happiness and helping each other. “The H Team” is designed to raise awareness and initiate discussion about pressure from peers and the media, body image, our eating and exercise habits and mental health. If we feel good about ourselves, it is easier to be kind and accepting of others. “The H Team” had some very clear messages for the students:

•Have a positive mindset! 

•Make good decisions! 

•Energy In = Energy Out!

•Set goals! Do your best! 

•Want does not equal Need!

In the play Cal and Mindi listened to Captain H and used their positive mindset to stay healthy and happy. When Mindi accidentally zapped Cal to Australia into the bedroom of a boy called Kenny, their problems began. Without Captain H and their positive mindset tools, Cal became Kenny and was easily swayed by the radio ads. He was soon eating lots of junk food, playing computer games and staying inside all day. When Mindi zaps herself to Earth to help Cal, she soon becomes swayed by the TV Magnet who tricks her into buying clothes, toys, a mobile phone and fizzy drinks. She starts to be mean like the girls on TV. Eventually, Cal and Mindi realise that they don’t need Captain H to have a positive mindset. They can set their own goals, make good decisions and do their best to be happy and healthy.

Brainstorm Productions has provided age appropriate resource materials for class teachers to follow up the messages of the performance with their students.