What is folklore? What is myth? Themes such as cultural festivals, stories about mythological cows all around the world: Kamadhenu in India; Hathor in Egypt; Ushi Oni in Japan; Minotaur in Greece and of course the Brazilian Bumba-Meu-Boi amongst others.
The Dancing Cow is a traditional figure in Brazilian Festivals, and can be seen in the Carnival, Christmas, religious celebrations and many other festivals. The cow is a mythical creature which crosses borders and helps bring individuals together through its historical and mythological roots. The workshops combining drama and craft allowed the children to explore old stories and create their own mythological cow story as well as building their own cow. The project culminated with performances by all the children participating in the project.
“…bringing a breath of fresh air to formal education. This project proved successful for offering to the participants an enjoyable and participative way of learning. Within the process children were extremely stimulated in expressing their feelings and their creativity, in sharing experiences, in learning about different cultures and in integrating in a group work. Throughout the project the participants verbalised their enthusiasm and motivation through the creative process. We believe that the playful character of the workshops promoted a positive and exciting atmosphere, which allowed the participants to engage fully in a kind of alternative learning process. The school staff and teachers also recognised that this type of work brings a breath of fresh air to formal education.”
(David Plews, teacher from Deptford Park Primary School)
The project reached over 200 students in Lewisham and Lambeth in 2008 and 2009 and was supported by Help A London Child (Capital Radio) and Peter Minet Trust.