Dr Faidra Faitaki (Principal Investigator) and Professor Victoria Murphy (Co-Investigator) were awarded a main grant from the John Fell Fund (Oxford University Press) for their project entitled: "Improving oral language skills in children with English as an Additional Language through a drama-based intervention". The funding will enable the project team to design and pilot an intervention that uses drama as a medium for developing EAL pupils' oral language skills.
The project will involve five phases:
(1) A steering workshop with teachers and researchers to establish theoretical and methodological aspects of the project.
(2) The design of the theatre workshops in collaboration with drama facilitators from Collide Theatre.
(3) The piloting of the resulting drama-based intervention with Year 1-3 children (EAL and English monolingual) in a local Oxford school.
(4) The collection and analysis of quantitative data (i.e., oral language assessments administered before and after the intervention) and qualitative data (i.e., observations held during and interviews held after the intervention) for evaluation purposes.
(5) A knowledge exchange workshop to update the stakeholders on the outcomes of the project and provide relevant professional development.
The project intends to pump-prime an application for a large-scale, drama-based intervention for improving EAL learners' development in English. Collaborating with educators and collecting valuable data through this project will ensure that the large-scale intervention will be meaningful and sustainable. The project team are grateful to the John Fell Fund for their generous support, and cannot wait to start working on the project in September!