Teacher Feature | Drama Teacher Liam Hallahan On Why He Teaches and His Advice To Others

Liam Hallahan teaches drama to 3-18 year olds at Silly Fish Learning creator, Rebecca Humphries’ old stomping ground, Prague Youth Theatre. He shared some of his experience with us!

SF: How did you get into teaching?

Liam Hallahan is this week's featured teacher.
Liam Hallahan

Liam: I’m what a friend of mine would call a ‘recovering actor’. I got into Drama because I thought I wanted to be a star, to be the leading man, yadda yadda yadda. But then I started to discover that there were other parts of drama that I enjoyed a lot more than performing! One of those things happens to be drama teaching.

I did some drama workshops and educational theatre with the Emerald Isle Theatre Company back in 2015-16, travelling around France and Belgium for 8 months. That’s when I really got the taste for teaching. I then did a year long course with Youth Theatre Ireland, called ArtsTrain, and off the back of that I got a job teaching with Prague Youth Theatre! And here I am!

If you asked me 2 years ago if I’d ever consider being a teacher, I’d have said no. But I’ve found it to be incredibly rewarding and fun, far more than I could have imagined. It’s tough at times, of course, what isn’t? But when things are going really well, and the student are having the time of their lives, well.. it feels pretty incredible!

SF: How do you incorporate creativity into your classes?

Liam: Drama is all about creativity; a drama class without it is barely a drama class at all! I particularly love playing games and running exercises where the students get to devise their own little scenes – whether they’re still images (tableaux, if you wanna sound fancy) or short improvised scenes.

'Imagination is like a muscle, and drama games are a great way to flex and train that muscle!' @Hallahactor Click To Tweet

SF: What advice would you give to other teachers?

Liam: Have a big box of tools. I don’t just mean physical props; have a big list of games ready to go that you can pull out on a moment’s notice! If your plan isn’t working, and you need to throw everything out and improvise, the more games you have to call on the better!

Over-prepare, and be ready to just pitch it all out the window.

SF: Are there any Silly Fish activities that you’re finding particularly helpful?

Liam: I’m finding all the arts and crafts extremely helpful! I’m teaching a lot of preschool and kindergarten groups at the minute, and they’re a terrific way to focus a group, and give them a bit of a break from all that running around and playing pretend.

If you’d like to keep up with Liam, you can find him on:

 

Facebook: Liam Hallahan
Twitter:@Hallahactor

 

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