‘How to Become an Expert in Early Years Imaginative Play’

Get accredited with this course!

Shortlisted 2020 and 2021 in the Teach Early Years awards!

This is an online course comprising of pre-recorded lessons, Pyjama Drama resources, access to live tutorials, outstanding ongoing support and the opportunity to become Pyjama Drama accredited at no extra cost!

  • A flexible course that can be completed at the pace that’s right for you and that fits around other commitments
  • Supports the DfE standards for professional development (certificate included)
  • Includes opportunity to become bronze accredited at no extra cost (receive personalised logo and images)
  • Shortlisted for a Teach Early Years award 2020 and 2021!
  • Co-written by Pyjama Drama founder, Sarah Owen

By the end of this course you will…

  • Be confident using drama techniques (even if you’ve never felt confident before)
  • Be confident delivering imaginative movement and music techniques (even if you have no prior training)
  • Know how to easily manage drama games (with both small and large groups)
  • Have mastered six Pyjama Drama techniques to help manage groups with positivity and fun
  • Be able to easily create imaginary works for children to explore

Watch a snippet from a lesson

Your Course Leader is Pyjama Drama play expert, Sarah Rijnen, our colleague from California.

How long does the course take to complete?

Take this course over a period of time that suits you and your other commitments. Lessons are typically less than five minutes long and because you have lifetime access, you can revisit them at any time. Watching all the lessons in one sitting would take you around 2.5 hours but this, of course, is not the intention because to gradually build your skills and confidence, we also ask you to complete simple challenges as you work your way through the course (16 in total).

We recommend you take the course over a period of 8 – 16 weeks, depending on your other commitments. If, for example, you decided to learn over 16 weeks, each week would look something like this:

  • Spend a maximum of 10 minutes watching pre-recorded lessons
  • Complete one challenge in your setting, allowing 15 minutes to plan and 15 minutes to complete each challenge. Please note, 14 of your 16 challenges are designed to be completed in your early years setting (or with your own children), the remainder at home.

What’s included

44 lessons across 8 Modules which include lots of teacher demonstrations delivered by our American colleague, Sarah Rijnen. Sarah’s friendly, down to earth approach will leave you smiling, and excited to get going!

Opportunity to receive bronze accreditation. If you’d like to become a bronze accredited Pyjama Drama imaginative play expert, you can choose to submit two assignments part-way through the course. The first, is a video of yourself playing a Pyjama Drama game and the second, a short written or spoken reflection about a time you used a Pyjama Drama technique. Once your status as a bronze expert has been approved, you’ll receive a personalised media pack which you can use to show your employer or customers how skilled you are at imaginative play! If you don’t pass first time? Don’t worry, we’ll give you feedback and you can re-submit your assignments as many times as you like (all at no extra cost).

Expert advice and support. Everyone who takes the course will have a direct line via email to our co-founders who will be on hand to offer advice and reassurance for as long as you need. Plus, join our online support group ‘ where you can share experiences, ask questions and benefit from regular online tutorials to support and extend your learning.

Challenges. We promote active learning, so set a series of 16 challenges throughout the course. Try out what you learn, either at home or in your setting.

Workbook. Our downloadable workbook outlines all of our drama techniques and gives step-by-step guides to facilitating our drama games and classroom management strategies. There’s also space to take notes.

Drama games. The course includes an additional downloadable pack of ten original Pyjama Drama games. Have fun playing with your early years children once you have mastered our drama techniques.

Bonus videos. Seven bonus teacher demonstration videos show you how to apply our techniques to multiple themes.

Who is this course for?

This training is for you if you work with (or are learning to work with) 3 – 5-year-olds and want to integrate a more drama-based, imaginative approach to all aspects of your practice, no matter what your experience of drama or leading imaginative play. This course is also a great way for those who have taken our introductory training, ‘An Introduction to Early Years Imaginative Play’ and wish to further develop their skills, or parents and carers who’re looking for simple ways to get involved in their children’s imaginary worlds.

Designed for the non-drama specialist, you don’t have to be ‘good at’ or experienced in drama to quickly see the benefits of drama and play for children’s physical as well as social and emotional development. ‘How to Become an Expert in Early Years Imaginative Play’ will benefit people such as, but not limited to:

  • Nursery workers
  • Playgroup leaders
  • Preschool leader
  • Nursery/Reception teachers
  • Teaching assistants
  • Childminders/Nannies
  • Students studying for childcare/early years qualifications
  • Students studying primary education with QTS, including PGCE

Who we are

This course has been created by a British company made up of three ex-teachers: Sarah Owen and Rachel McKenna from the UK, and Sarah Rijnen from California (your course leader). Sarah Owen founded Pyjama Drama Franchising, a network of franchisees across the UK, and in Australia and Malaysia, in 2005.

How we meet the DfE Professional Development Standards

Exceptional ‘The online lessons were fantastic. Exceptional.’ Varvara, Montessori teacher

Related really well to EYFS ‘The online lessons were brilliant. The online tutorials were really informative. They related really well to the EYFS.’ Amanda Cornish, Nursery Manager

Brilliant ‘Brilliant. The lessons are informative, lively, straightforward, entertaining, concise, to the point and VERY watchable.’ Stephen Waldron, retired Deputy Head Teacher

A self-esteem booster for sure! ‘I have absolutely loved the course. My fear when becoming a teacher was that I wouldn’t be confident enough to be big and silly and find ways to engage the children within their play and learning, so to have these games and ideas to support the children is amazing. The course is incredible, massively supportive and a self-esteem booster for sure! I would highly recommend for any new and aspiring teachers or any experienced teachers that want to connect with new ways to engage their children, brush up their skills and encourage the lost imaginations of children.’  Millie Tyerman, BA Early Childhood Studies, Northampton

A transformative approach ‘Wonderful course, which has led to a reframing of how I would approach different areas of Learning – this is a transformative approach!’ Gillian Hoult, student (Early Years Initial Teacher Training Course)

Part of the community ‘The supporting tutorials were really useful and helpful as they made me feel more of a part of the community. I was able to ask questions and see others talk about their experiences. It kept me focused on the course. Taking the course has helped me think about my overall approach in my setting, how I speak to the children and engage with them.’ Judith Wood, Childminder 

Gave me confidence ‘I thought the lessons were amazing. I am only just starting my PGCE course and was quite nervous about going back into the classroom. The lessons not only have me new techniques but also gave me confidence in using this more ‘drama’ based approach.’ Demetra Tzamarias, PGCE In Early Childhood Education and Care 0-5 

I’m so grateful ‘Practical and creative ideas that don’t require specific resources that take extra time. My children are so engaged with the activities and songs. I’m so grateful to Pyjama Drama Learning for improving my teaching.’ Hannah

Very effective ‘The tutorials were very effective as they gave opportunities for questions. In particular, I found listening to other practitioners and their experiences of carrying out activities particularly helpful.’ Naomi Breslin, Deputy Manager and Preschool teacher

10/10 – would recommend ‘BEST CLASS EVER! It can be very awkward and out of your comfort zone to play pretend in front of adults, but trust me, it is FUN and you learn by doing! If you are a teacher, take this class. Practice at home. Your kids will love everything you bring back to them. I have nothing but great things to say about Pyjama Drama and the instructor, Sarah. 10/10 would recommend!!’ Cici

Inspired and excited  ‘I have thoroughly enjoyed this training opportunity. I am so very excited to use Pyjama Drama in my daily practice. I am inspired and excited! It has helped me to rethink how I actually model to the children and how I will interact with them in the future. Thank you so very much!’ Abigail Brana, Nursery teacher 

Supported my confidence ‘The tools that I have learned through the Pyjama Drama Learning workshops have supported my confidence in engaging with imaginative play and with children I work with. Play is the best way to learn.’ Laurinda Wagner

Really useful   ‘I found the lessons really useful, I have implemented a few in my sessions and have found they have been really effective.’ Anne Marie Hepworth, EYFS teacher assistant

Gain Bronze accreditation at no extra cost with this “transformative” course!

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  • 2 hours 30 minutes


  • 9 Modules
  • 46 Lessons
  • Course Certificate