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Stories from the Reef Term 2 – 3

10 June – 20 September 2024

In the Centre for Creativity

Sydney Opera House Presents

A Theatre making and STEAM workshop for Students | Early Stage 1 – 1 | Inspired by the Sydney Opera House Artificial Reef Project, students learn about sustainability and marine habitats. Learning through theatre play and combining drama, storytelling and movement the workshop teaches students about the science and marine life of the Harbour.

Where does the ink go when the octopus puts it in the ocean?

Student in Kindergarten

Exploring sustainability through creative play

The foundation of the workshop explores Sydney Harbour underwater ecosystems, sustainability, andplastic waste. It aims to increase students' sensitivity and understanding about healthy harbours and our relationship to caring and protecting our natural environments.

Using theatre making and play skills, students create their own underwater world using recycled materials in new and unusual ways. Exploring self-expression and imaginative play, students inhabit characters you may encounter in the artificial reef, and perform imagined narratives and stories as a group.

In this workshop, students:

  • Learn about the ecosystems of the harbour surrounding the Sydney Opera House and how artificial reefs are made and work to support new aquatic growth
  • Collaborate with their classmates to create characters, small artworks and storylines that culminate in a short play or presentation
  • Embody roles such as the Puppet Maker, Reef Builder and Ranger Storyteller to share with toimaginatively engage in their learning
  • Explore drama play, storytelling and movement culminating in a short performance
  • Develop their ability to express themselves and communicate thoughts about their relationship to the natural world, including describing observable features of living things and their environments
  • Learn about the ways the Sydney Opera House, and other organisations, can contribute to positively impacting the environment and community through sustainability projects

Stories from the Reef is a Creative Learning Workshop developed by Sarah-Vyne Vassallo with the Creative Learning Team at the Sydney Opera House.


Curriculum links

Learn about science, sustainability, urban Harbour habitats and biodiversity through English, Science, Drama, Dance and Visual Arts


Learning resources

The Opera House’s learning resources provide inspirational activities to watch, listen and read for students in the classroom or learning at home. 

Find learning resources

Program information

These newly developed Creative Learning Modules use the site and building of the Sydney Opera House as a catalyst for learning about science, technology, engineering, arts, architecture and maths - transforming the way we understand STEM subjects and ideas through the creative and performing arts.

The Modules can be delivered alongside a tour of the House exploring First Nations perspectives, the architectural practice of Jorn Utzon and his collaborators, as well as the contemporary uses of the site as a world-class performing arts venue. All Modules include pre- and post-learning activities, as well as a range of video resources designed for students to develop lateral connections with content for deeply embedded learning experiences.


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Other information

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