KS2 Music / Dance / Drama / History: World War 1 Performance Pack - 'Archie Dobson's War'. Dance - Part 2: Over by Christmas

The dance activities in this programme begin by contrasting 'town' and 'country' in the summer of 1914. There are also some simple steps to learn from a contemporary dance called 'The Castle Walk' before the declaration of war takes us to the parade ground for some military drill steps.

The activities in the programme can be used to support your on-going work in dance at Key Stage 2. They also support a performance of our play 'Archie Dobson's War', commemorating the outbreak of World War 1.

Dance - Part 1: Countdown to war

Summary

Warm-up

Digging trenches. Rhythmic ‘dig and throw’ actions – march to a new space and repeat.

Sequence 1: Life in the trenches

Walking along the zig-zagging, muddy trenches with small, careful steps. Joining one or two people nearby to create a short sequence based on a selected trench-life activity – eg playing cards, writing a letter, eating a meal, sharing a story.

Sequence 2: The Homefront – munitions workers

Groups of about 4 form munitions production lines to perform set actions (push, pull, jump, turn) – one after the other and then together in unison. Each group develops their own production line sequence, varying the size, direction and speed of the actions.

Sequence 3: Christmas truce

Class divided into 2 equal group lines; sitting along opposite ends of the room. ‘Silent night’ cues slow, cautious steps towards person from opposite line – to shake hands and perform slow-motion footballing sequence together.

Cool down

Walk to a space for a series of slow, gentle stretches – back, legs, arms, whole body.

Resources

Teachers' notes
document
Archie Dobson's War - The Playscript
document
Music cues and SFX
audio

More from this series

Dance - Part 1: Countdown to war
audio
Dance Part 3: Over the top!
audio
Music - Part 1: Listen to the fields
audio