Tuesday, 18 December 2007

A Cracking Christmas show

The children in years 3 and 4 of the school I work part time in have been practicing for a show called A Cracking Christmas. The story goes that 4 children get given a box of magic crackers that when pulled will transport them around the world seeing the cultures and at the same time hearing about a very special story of long ago.

So different groups of children perform dances from different countries whilst the whole group sing the songs. They visit Spain, Hawaii, Africa, India, China, and the USA. These visits are in the original script and so there are songs to sing whilst the children dance. However, with so many children, we extended the show by having dances from Brazil (samba), Ireland and New Zealand (the Hakka).

Early on in the rehearsal schedule I introduced EFT to the 140 or so children. I gave them all a copy of the Happy Tapping poem by Don White to take home (with a reference to http://www.emofree.com/ at the bottom for parents). I changed it slightly by missing out a word that didn't fit the rhythm.

Happy Tapping is lots of fun
You can do it on your own - or with anyone!
Tap tap tap on the top of your head,
Tap tap tap do just what I said!
Tap on your eyebrow just near your nose.
Then the side of your eye where the hard bone grows.
Now on the bone - under your eye,
Don't poke your eye or you'll make yourself cry!
Now under your nose - but over your lips
Tap tap tap - with your finger tips!
Now under your lip - but over your chin,
Just on the bit where your chin goes in.
Now under your collarbone - but over your chest,
Under the bump of the bone is best!
The last on the list is under you arm,
To make sure you get it right - slap with your palm!

If you still don't feel good - don't go to bed,
Start tapping again on the top of your head!

I suggested they tap on the points whilst thinking of the day's events before sleep. Some children have reported to me that they have actually been doing this!

During rehearsal we tapped on the boring waiting for their turn, not being able to remember or even do the dance steps and forgetting their lines.

Just before they went on stage for the dress rehearsal we tapped on being nervous and scared about tripping up going on and off the stage, forgetting the dance steps, forgetting lines, not being able to sit still and quietly, and scared of the audience. They were performing to the younger children and their previous teachers. As they were lining the corridor to enter the hall i suggested that if they were still nervous to continue tapping. Some did whilst others said they were not nervous.

The dress rehearsal went really well with no hitches.

Altogether they did 4 performances in order to fit all the families in. Before the first two - one in the afternoon and one at night - they tapped for being scared because their family was in the audience and also that their family was not in the audience to cover all bases. On the evening performance, just as it was starting, we realised that one of the main actors was not there and so had to hastily persuade a girl to stand in. She took the script with her and after her first scene I tapped on her non-stop during the first dance. I tapped on her again during the second dance but after that she did not take the script on stage and did not need any more tapping. She was a star!

I noticed a few children tapping just before they got up to do their dance. it was wonderful to know that they now had a tool they could use and that they used it.

I teach a few different classes in that school and have taught a few of the older children EFT for anger management and sometimes get stopped in the corridor by a child who wants reminding of the tapping spots saying they were angry at a kid in the class.