Brooke
Profiles

Brooke

Brooke grew up doing both New Zealand Speech Board and Trinity College Speech and Drama exams so it is a privilege and a joy for her to now teach the syllabus. She went on to work professionally at the Court Theatre in Christchurch as a teenager and then trained at Toi Whakaari- the New Zealand Drama School. She has since worked in film, television and theatre in New Zealand, Australia, the US and Canada.

Brooke has been a speech and drama teacher for the last 7 years teaching students from 4-18 years old. She is passionate about inspiring confidence and creativity in young people through speech and drama lessons.

In 2010 Brooke won "Best Performance" in the NZ Herald Best of Theatre Awards.

Lesson plans for Term 1, 2021
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Lesson plans for Term 1, 2021

As we welcome our returning students back for the start of another year, and greet our new students for the first time, this blog post focuses on what can be expected in lesson plans for Term 1, 2021.  At Head Held High, our speech and drama lessons follow a set structure which provides stability and...

Mel
Profiles

Mel

Melissa is an actor and comedian, originally from Sydney. She has an associate degree in Acting from the Theatre of Arts in Los Angeles. 

Since moving to Auckland 3 years ago, highlights of her screen work include Jonah, Shortland Street and feature film All About the Afterglow. 

As a comedian Melissa has performed at The Comedy Store in LA, The Classic Auckland and was selected to perform at the Laugh Riot Grrrl Comedy Festival LA. She loves working with children and having fun in class.

On the weekends Melissa loves roller skating, doing yoga and travelling.

The Power Of A Positive Learning Environment
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The Power Of A Positive Learning Environment

Children learn best when and where they feel safest and happiest. To a large extent, either consciously or unconsciously, any learning environment’s tone is determined by the teacher in the room.  At Head Held High, we’re lucky enough to enjoy a natural advantage when it comes to being able to create a positive learning environment...

‘Meet The Speech & Drama Teacher’ feat. Jess Loudon [Video]
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‘Meet The Speech & Drama Teacher’ feat. Jess Loudon [Video]

Interview with Head Held High Teacher, Jess Loudon In this post, we meet one of our (relatively) new teachers, Jess Loudon. Where is she from? What’s that accent? Where have we seen her before (hint, it’s on TV)? And, what’s her message for young people with a love for the performing arts? We throw all...

Lesson content sneak peek for Term 3, 2020  [Video]
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Lesson content sneak peek for Term 3, 2020 [Video]

In the two videos below our Head of Teaching, Erica Kröger, gives some insight into what’s in the lesson plans for Head Held High students this coming term. The first video profiles the lesson content for junior students (Years 1 – 6), while the second video profiles the lesson content for intermediate (Years 7/8) and...

Public speaking is child’s play
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Public speaking is child’s play

Many Head Held High student parents reading this will be very aware that public speaking modules and competitions in primary schools around Auckland are evolving. Goodbye to the one-size-fits-all approach. Goodbye to all kids being forced to do a “classic” 3 minute speech. Hello to three new, exciting speech formats for children to choose from,...

How Covid-19 made us better teachers
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How Covid-19 made us better teachers

At the time of publishing this blog post, New Zealand has been in Level 1 of Covid-19 safety precautions for 24 hours. The country is in the extremely fortunate position of being able to open up again, schools included. At Head Held High, this means that after 2.5 months of teaching weekly 700 students online,...

Becoming online speech and drama teaching experts – a crash course!
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Becoming online speech and drama teaching experts – a crash course!

As Covid-19 lockdown loomed on the horizon, we faced an uncertain time at Head Held High. A month ago, it was incomprehensible to teach lessons without being able to see, hear and interact with all our talented students… Yet, once the decision was made to do online speech and drama teaching, the whole team ramped...

An example of speech and drama helping to overcome fears
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An example of speech and drama helping to overcome fears

In this week’s blog post, read a true story of channeling speech & drama skills to overcome fear, as experienced by one of our fabulous teachers – Jess Macdonald. As I stepped up to the stage, adrenaline and fear coursing through my body, I wondered how on earth I’d got there. Now, two months later,...

What’s in speech and drama lessons in Term 1?
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What’s in speech and drama lessons in Term 1?

At Head Held High, our speech and drama lessons follow a set structure which provides stability and continuity for students. This means they, and you, can know what to expect each week! We start each lesson by exchanging some news – about what they’ve enjoyed that week or through another interesting conversation topic – and...