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National Theatre expands its support for schools


Marking the first day of the National Theatre’s annual Drama Teacher Conference, which brings together hundreds of drama teachers from across the UK, we would like to announce our new educational resources for schools:

  • The Learning Hub, a new free, online library of teacher resources to support arts and creativity in education.
  • Our new pilot series Practitioners in Practice conceived by Katie Mitchell with the National Theatre launches its first episode to support the teaching of leading contemporary artists, beginning with a new resource exploring the work of theatre practitioner and director Katie Mitchell.
  • The National Theatre Collection expands today with ten new titles to watch for free in the classroom.

Learning Hub

The Learning Hub will bring all of our teacher resources together in one place, making finding what you need easy and quick. You’ll be able to search the site by subject, age, genre or production area and you’ll see recommendations for other resources that might be of interest to you.

Whether you’re looking for new ways to teach English and drama or to support your own learning, the Learning Hub is your gateway.

We’re launching with 60 resources, but over the coming year we’ll add many more from our extensive back catalogue and we’ll also be adding some exciting new content.

You’ll find a selection of PDF and short films, from resources that support the study of an English or drama set text; to those that explore theatre-making skills and creative careers or introduce drama to the primary classroom.

Young people performing during The Witches schools workshop
Young people performing during The Witches schools workshop photo © Natalie Mitchell

Each resource page includes information telling you what it is, who it is suitable for and how it can support learning.

Primary teachers looking to bring creativity into the classroom might like to explore our Five Creative Ways series.

Secondary English teachers and students might find our Shakespeare essentials most useful, whilst those following secondary drama courses might like to delve into how our productions are made with rehearsal diaries and interviews with actors, directors and designers.

The Learning Hub will complement our existing resource offer for schools and colleges, with links to the 70 productions available on the National Theatre Collection and the wealth of material available in the National Theatre Archive.

Young person asking a question at the Q+A of the Live theatre review student conference 2024
Young person asking a question at the Q+A of the Live theatre review student conference 2024 photo © Emma Hare

Practitioners in Practice: Katie Mitchell

Conceived by theatre practitioner and director Katie Mitchell, we are delighted to launch a new resource Practitioners in Practice: Katie Mitchell to help bring cutting-edge theatre practice into the classroom.

The resource explores Mitchell’s unique style and methodology, and the methods students can use to replicate her work in classroom settings with varying resources and budget. The Learning Hub is the destination for Practitioners in Practice: Katie Mitchell.

I conceived the Practitioners in Practice series to support the teaching of theatre making in secondary schools, especially at A Level.  This first episode uses my own practice to pilot a written and film resource which will provide a model that can be applied over time to a much more diverse group of practitioners. The series aims to help teachers and students to access a wider range of contemporary work and bridge the gap between professional practice and drama in the classroom. It is also a response to the shocking fall off on A Level and GSCE take-up for drama over the past decade and hopes to help support schools to turn these figures round.
Katie Mitchell

An image of Katie Mitchell in rehearsal, holding a pencil in her right hand and gesturing with her left hand towards something happening in front of her.

National Theatre Collection

Ten new titles have been added to the National Theatre Collection, making a total of 70 titles available to stream directly into classrooms across the UK for free.

New titles include Zadie Smith’s Wife of Willesden directed by National Theatre’s Director Designate, Indhu Rubasingham, Dylan ThomasUnder Milk Wood directed by Lyndsey Turner, Othello directed by the National Theatre’s Deputy Artistic Director, Clint Dyer, and the 2022 National Theatre’s schools touring production of Hamlet, directed by Tinuke Craig, for 8–12-year-olds.

The platform is free for all state schools and FE colleges in the UK with titles and additional learning resources suitable for both secondary and primary schools.

Othello kneeling, facing a kneeling Desdemona, tense with anger.
Giles Terera and Rosy McEwen in the National Theatre's Othello, 2023 photo © Myah Jeffers

Tell us what you think

As we continue to build the Learning Hub, we’d love to hear from teachers and students about how you’re finding the platform. We welcome any feedback you have about your experience of the Learning Hub

Feedback on the Learning Hub here