SDEA Talk: Drama, Cognition and Creativity with Dr Peter Duffy

On 22 Sep 2017, SDEA and LASALLE College of the Arts’ School of Creative Industries’ MA in Arts Pedagogy and Practice programme co-presented a talk on ‘Drama, Cognition and Creativity’ by Dr Peter Duffy.

In the 2-hours, Dr Duffy took the audience through different definitions of learning and shared the embodied learning experience that drama provides. Through activities, the audience was able to experience how drama reinforces learning multi-modally by providing creative and emotional dimensions of learning. They also took away different definitions of learning from behaviourists definitions like Lachman’s to more cognitive based ones like Wendy Ostroff’s and Alexander Astin’s 9 Principles of Learning.

A warm audience of 46 people with the interest to learn about from diverse organisations such as the MOE (AEB Department), LASALLE College of the Arts, National Institute of Education, INSEAD, National Arts Council, Clementi Primary School, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Vocalogy, We Colour People Theatre & Company, MoonShadow Stories, CHIJ ST Nicholas Girls’ School, Dyslexia Association of Singapore, Thinkstar Plus, Sing’theatre Academy and Yale-NUS College attended the talk.

This presentation draws upon decades of cognitive science, creativity, drama/theatre and education research to demonstrate why enactive pedagogies such as drama should figure centrally into schooling practices. The main argument is that the brain, and eventually the mind, is a predictive machine that maps its predictive ability through the body. This twinned mapping of the brain and the body is a central concern of researchers interested in education, cognitive science and learning. Evidence shows that engaging the body not only reinforces learning multi-modally, but, in fact, triggers something much more profound; when the body is recruited in learning, the whole brain is activated. What drama provides more than other physical engagements is the creative and emotional dimensions of learning. Research is clear that when emotional centers are called upon during learning, the duration and complexity of the learning is more lasting.

Peter’s research makes the case for embodied and social cognition in learning as well as look at the role that metaphor and cognitive linguistics plays in how we conceptualise and frame learning.

About Dr Peter Duffy                           

Dr Peter Duffy heads the Master of Arts in Teaching programme in theatre education at the University of South Carolina where he prepares future teachers to become drama educators. He teaches courses on drama-based pedagogies and arts integration. He is a  director and is a former public school teacher, education director, and a New York City teaching artist. His research interests include ethnography, cognition and the arts, culturally responsive pedagogies and performed research.

Date: 22 September 2017, Friday

Time: 6.30 pm to 8.30 pm, Registration starts 6 pm

Venue: Lasalle College Of The Arts, Block F, Level 2 #F201

Cost: Free admission, registration is required.

Registration is closed.

Dr Peter Duffy will facilitate a masterclass: Designing Assessment Literacy in Drama Education on 23 September 2017, Saturday.  Registration is closed.