How to Put On the Ultimate Year 6 Leavers Production
Around this time of year, schools up and down the country will be getting ready for the imminent exodus of year 6 pupils. And yet, no matter how many years you have been teaching for, it’s always surprising just how emotional it can be saying goodbye to your ‘favourite year 6 class’.
A year 6 leavers production can make the transition from primary to secondary education a less intimidating experience for your students whilst providing them with the recognition they deserve. A good leavers play or musical should reinforce their happy memories of your school, give them a message to take away with them and set their minds at ease about moving on to the next venture.
The following advice will help you put on an end of year production that is effective in all these areas, helping you make the day as enjoyable, moving and memorable as possible.
Ingredients of a Successful Year 6 Leavers Production
- A decent script
While it might seem like a nice idea to write a leavers play from scratch, it’ll give you tons of extra work to do when there are already some very good pre-written scripts available.
Many of these come with everything you need to get the show on the road, including teacher’s notes, musical scores and audio CDs containing backing and vocal tracks, making the experience a whole lot easier for you.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- A fun-filled panto to entertain the whole school, e.g. Aladdin Trouble, Cinderella & Rockerfella, Alice the Musical.
- A poignant play with a strong message, e.g. The Peace Child
- Work with pupils to produce a script of your own, incorporating a selection of leavers’ songs to liven up the performance.
- Plenty of preparation
The best year 6 leavers productions are planned well in advance to give everyone plenty of time to prepare and minimise the last minute panic. Make sure you’re ready to start rehearsing at least a month before the big day, having had a quick read through the script, chosen the cast and scheduled in all practices.
Don’t skimp on the dress rehearsal: it’ll enable you to iron out any unforeseen problems that may not otherwise become apparent until the day of the production itself.
- Help from parents and other teachers
Getting others to help out can effectively halve your workload and can even result in a better production overall. Whether you need help making costumes and props, directing your cast during rehearsals or manning the backstage area on the day, don’t be afraid to ask for volunteers. The response may just surprise you.
This is rather a more abstract ingredient but an important one nevertheless. A bit of creativity can take your production to the next level, giving it a personal touch and making it feel more relevant.
Make a few minor adjustments to the script, tailoring it to your year 6 leavers and the school as a whole, or simply top and tail it with a simple narrative to reinforce the meaning behind it.
- A pleasant surprise at the end
Once the play is over, why not reward your year 6 leavers with something they weren’t expecting? This could be as small as a box of chocolates or as personal as a short presentation taking a look back through their time at school and highlighting their achievements.
Such a gesture will mark the day out in your pupils’ memory as one to cherish, and encourage them to take pride in the valuable contribution they have made during their time at primary school.