Alana Interviews her Drama Teacher
Bridget Crooks, Drama and Performing Arts Technology teacher at Kerikeri High School was interviewed by Alana Venancio, dramatic student ambassador.
Why did you choose to become a teacher?
Mrs Crooks achieved a BA Honours in Drama and Theatre Studies had been an actress for many years. Her mom had always told she should be a teacher, so she decided to give it a go and loved it!
Why did you choose to teach Drama and Performing Arts Technology?
Drama and the technologies involved in the process are her career, talent, and passion.
What do you love the most about Drama?
Mrs Crooks loves the energy of the classes and how the students are involved and having fun. She appreciates that when you are in Drama you can be yourself and feel safe and accepted by your drama group.
What is the most challenging thing about teaching?
Mrs Crooks says grading and formal paperwork is easy, and so is getting students to be organized and hand in projects. Doing everything she can to support students to feel comfortable, while also pushing them to their best potential is quite challenging.
What made you choose Kerikeri High School to teach at?
Mrs Crooks moved to Northland many years ago with her Northland born husband and back then Kerikeri High School was the only school which offered Drama as a subject, so it was an easy decision.
We also asked Alana why drama with Mrs Crooks is her favourite subject…
“Drama is a subject in which the students get to become creative and theatrical, but we also feel like we can be ourselves and everything that we are can be used to produce art, it doesn’t matter how different it is expressed. The lessons are always fun, but they can be deep and intense as well, because we talk about the most diverse issues and discussions and we make use of it.
I feel like I contribute to the group in every small role or production, helping create something beautiful and meaningful, even when it’s simple. Even though it can be very challenging for me sometimes, especially when it comes to improvise, it’s exciting to know that I’m developing skills such as learning to accept my mistakes and moving on.
The class is such a colourful environment in many ways, and Mrs Crooks, as a facilitator, not a teacher, as she says it herself, helps us channel this energy and turn it into… Art. She is so understanding and supportive and knows how and when to push the students a bit further, always with humour. You will never leave drama without a smile, and that is why I love it.
Drama is very different from the conventional subjects I have in Brazil (where it is not usually available as a subject), and I’m very grateful for this new experience.”