Talking drama into being: types of talk in drama classrooms


  • Kelly Freebody The University of Sydney
  • Kelly Freebody University of Sydney



This paper explores the structure of talk in drama classrooms, particularly the ways students and teachers use different kinds of talk to achieve their classroom work and construct shared moral reasoning as the basis of their practical educational activities. The data and discussion presented here bring together the curricular setting of educational drama and the methodological setting of Conversation Analysis and Membership Categorisation Analysis. The transcripts and analyses emerged from a larger study that sought to explore the particular ways students interacted within process drama lessons dealing with future life prospects and pathways.  The identification of three distinct kinds of talk has significance for education scholars, teacher-educators and teacher-practitioners as it has the potential to enable a more detailed awareness of the structure of classroom practice and the particular ways students engage with significant ideas in classroom settings. 


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Author Biography

Kelly Freebody, The University of Sydney

Kelly Freebody is a lecturer in the Faculty of Education and Social Work, The University of Sydney.  Her research interests include educational drama, social justice issues in education, and qualitative research methods, particularly conversation analysis and membership categorisation analysis.


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Issue 1 Themed Section: In Schools