English Language Teacher Training Course, Florence Italy


English Teacher Training Course



 Course Dates:

Course Location:

Teatro Puccini Via delle Cascine, 41  50144 Florence, Italy 

This course is specially designed for Nursery and Primary School teachers in Italy and offers a unique “English Language Drama Training” experience, which will equip teachers to be more confident, effective and actively engaging in the classroom.

Acting and theatre activities help children of all ages focus and concentrate their energies and improve their language communication skills. This course provides practical examples of how to incorporate animatedly and creatively language games, songs, stories and role-play activities into the classroom. Children (and teachers) learn by doing and HAVING FUN!

Course programme : 

  • Creative Drama and role-play activities for young learners
  • Chants, rhymes and songs (using music effectively in the classroom)
  • Storytelling with Puppets, Masks, Costume and authentic materials
  • How to teach and engage young learners using TPR (Total Physical  Response)
  • Classroom management skills; appropriate language for the classroom
  • Building confidence teaching in English

The course is presented  by Miranda Fynn Legge, a native English speaker, professional actress (graduate from The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London) and accredited English language teacher – Certificate CELTA (Cambridge University, England). Miranda has been teaching English through Drama to young learners, adults and teachers in Italy for over 25 years. Miranda also is the founder of the Teatro Inglese method. “Children have many years of learning ahead of them and I believe that if their first experience of English is pleasurable, motivating and fun, they will have a positive attitude towards it for the rest of their lives.”

During the one day course Miranda will share her teaching experience and introduce creative and practical ideas for the following key language themes Colours, The Body, Animals, Clothes, My House, Food, Weather, Time, Days of the week. All participants will be encouraged to “actively” take part.

In the afternoon participants will be encouraged to practice their new skills by presenting a  simple activity. As a group we will discuss their effectiveness based on their creativity, involvement and enjoyment from a young learners perspective and how each activity can be adapted to different levels. Miranda will also offer individual tips and suggestions for follow up activities and lesson plans.

Certification awarded: Attendance certificate detailing topics covered, course content and the number of training hours.



The Enormous Turnip – Role Play

The Enormous Turnip is a super simple story for children learning English as a second language and useful for introducing or revising family and animal vocabulary. An alternative to reading directly from a book is to use picture cards and adapt the language according to the children’s language abilities

Storytelling using theatre props and costumes add extra elements of curiosity, facilitate comprehension and encourage group participation.

To accompany  The Enormous Turnip  try making a little paper shovel, an envelope full of seeds (rice) and a paper watering can.  Include simple coloured masks and stick to plastic spoons for the children to hold for role play work.

You can create a mini role play by simply using props similar to the ones I use in the video and involve children by asking them to sow  and water the seeds.  Add to the fun by encouraging children to interpret the story characters . Give them a mask and tell them in turn to pull the “flashcard”!

show 3

http://www.teatroinglese.it  The Enormous Turnip end of year production

I also find a great exercise after I have told the story is get the children to act it out!

1. Play some relaxing instrumental music for the children to listen to

2. Encorauge the children to lie on the floor and make themselves as small as possible

3. Explain that you are the farmer and using the shovel, pretend to dig holes around the children

4. Sow the seeds (by shaking the envelope of rice over the children’s heads)

5. Water the seeds (make some whooshing water sounds over the children’s bodies)

6. Encourage the children to imagine they are the tiny turnip seeds growing slowly under the earth

7. Continue watering the “seeds” and then explain to the children that the sun is coming out and becomes warmer and slowly the seeds begin to grow, bigger and bigger and bigger until they become the most ENORMOUS TURNIPS waiting to be pulled out of the earth by the farmer (play act with the children and show examples of how they can express the growing seeds using their bodies and faces )

Great fun and a theatrical way to review key vocabulary.

Miranda Flynn Legge

Peter, my new bilingual teaching assistant….what a squawker!!


Get children actively involved in English lessons using a little English friend. A great teaching assistant!

Greeting “Peter” and introducing him to your class:

  • Hello Peter!
  • Good morning Peter!
  • Peter, where are you?
  • Peter ? there you are!
  • How are you today?
  • (Ask the children to say hello)

Ask “Peter the Toucan” some general questions:

  • What’s this?
  • What’s that?
  • What’s your favourite food?
  • What’s the weather like?
  • Where’s your pen?
  • Where’s your red bag?
  • Which do you prefer – the red or the green?
  • Which do you want?
  • Why are you happy/sad/tired/angry?

Play Parachute

I’ve just bought this fantastic play parachute. I bought a 3 m one as I think it’s really big enough for small children. Ideal for doing circle activities and songs with children from ages 2-6. I’ll be posting some parachute games shortly.

Children tend to get very excited as soon as they see the parachute and want to jump on it, wriggle under it, pull it, stretch it  and everything else imaginable. Once they start it’s very difficult to regain any classroom control so one initial sanity saver tip I would like to share with you before you  bring out the parachute in class,  is to practice the “HOLD and DROP” rule . “HOLD” get the children to hold hands. “DROP” – encourage the children to immediately drop their hands and wiggle their hands and fingers in front of their bodies. Practice these movements a few times and only subsequently  introduce the parachute. “HOLD” –  everyone holds onto the parachute. “DROP” –  everyone drops it instantly.  This enables the teacher to put away the parachute at the end of each activitiy with the children acting calmly.




 You will need: Pop music  

This is a very simple warm up , listening and concentration exercise but great fun for everyone. I usually start every lesson with this one. You should actively take part at least initially in this game in order to verbally and physically demonstrate to the children what you want them to do. Instruct everyone to:

– Stand up

– Sit down

– Walk

– Hop

– Jump

– Sit down

– Lay down

– Sit up

– Stand up

– Wiggle (dance the twist)

– Fly

– Swim

– Drive a car (beep beep)

– Clap

– Cheer

– Say hello (wave)

– Spin around

Repeat and change all the action words until the children start associating the verbal instruction with the correct physical action.


1. Go round the circle and indicate to everyone which child is a boy or girl. Play the game again this time Instruct “only the girls” or “only the boys” to do a movement or “everyone” in unison

2.For children ages 5+ Simon Says becomes a natural follow on game


Tips on Stage Make-up



Face Painting adds great excitement and novelty to any Drama class.  With stage make-up, children finally feel like professional actors!

If you are far from being a professional face painter, like myself, I suggest you use very simple creations to maximum effect!! You also should consider “time”, as any  group of children will find it difficult to wait patiently and quietly while you create individual masterpieces for each child’s face!

So I personally suggest that you always keep it:

1.     QUICK and SIMPLE

2.       Make your life easier by investing in a stage make- up pallet and paintbrush, base pancake and sponges. The paints are water based, very allergy friendly and easy to wipe off after. You can also make animal whiskers and moustaches, and rosy cheeks precisely and in seconds.


1.       If you have a large class and want to make-up everyone before a show ..try and get the children to arrive early and straight into costume. As soon as one child is ready start making up. So you don’t have a line of impatient children waiting.

2.       Also, prepare beforehand what kind of faces you are going to do and for whom so you don’t waste valuable time thinking when you have the children in front of you!

3.       Avoid eyes, children don’t like make-up too close to their eyes as they get irritated and start to water.

4.       Remind the children not to touch their faces until the paint is dry, you don’t want 20 smudged faces before the curtain even goes up!

5.      Get  inspiration and ideas for face painting on the internet or try  some books here are some from Amazon you could check out. I really like all Usborne books for children and find them really user friendly.

 Here is an interesting video I found on you tube that could get you motivated in doing something more sophisticated.