Machine: How-To

Basic Instructions

  • Define a playing space and inform students that you are going to create a machine. Ask class to define the characteristics of a machine. (ex. has multiple parts that work together)
  • Ask a volunteer to come up and make a simple sound and motion. Make sure that this is a sound and motion that can be repeated comfortably.
  • Ask student to pause and invite another student to join the machine by adding their own sound and motion. Remind the students that parts of a machine work together.
  • Continue to add students one at a time to build the machine. When everyone has joined in, freeze the action and ask the other students to reflect on what they see.

Possible Reflection Questions

  • Describe: What do you notice about this machine?
  • Analyze: How is this part contributing to the overall function of the machine?
  • Relate: What other parts could we add to this machine?

Scaffolding Tips for Success

  • Build a silent machine first.
  • Pre Activity: Have students stand in a circle or at their desks and brainstorm possible sounds and motions as a whole group.
  • Discuss what working together looks like. Ask Students: What are some different ways that we can work together as we build our machine?

For more information and ideas on how to apply this strategy to your content visit:

Drama for Schools

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