Theater is an art form in which students learn what it means to be a human being in vicarious settings where feelings and questions can be safely expressed, explored and experienced. Through role-playing, scriptwriting, and character developing in various circumstances, ASA students are able to create situations and actions allowing them to make sense of their world and to understand those who are different than they are.
Children have an innate sense of drama. From an early age they create characters and stories to explore their worlds. ASA students in kindergarten through third grades learn to improvise, develop action, create characters, explore various situations and experiences similar to and different from their own. Students learn to reflect on their work through observation, individual and group discussion, and oral and written analysis. ASA students are taught to work together to create and solve problems, thus laying the groundwork for well developed interpersonal skills, greater levels independence and positive group interaction.
In grades four and five, ASA students will develop and use oral and written skills of expression, improvisation, and role playing to create (write), direct, produce, analyze, and critique their work in productive ways.
Theater education is a creative and focused discipline in which students explore various identities and viewpoints as well as their roles in the world in which they live. Through scriptwriting, acting, directing, designing, and producing theater for their peers and invited audience, ASA students will develop strong communication skills as they learn and develop essential attributes of successful transitions and higher order thinking skills of creating, critiquing, and problem solving through collaboration.
Acting – 1-2 An introduction to the basic skills and vocabulary of acting. Improvisation (ensemble, concentration, rhythmic, sensory, spatial, and physical awareness, dramatic imagining, responsiveness to given circumstances); and Solo and Duet Scene Work from Realistic Plays (actions, obstacles, objectives, research).
Acting 3-4 Advanced scene work. Reinforcement of concepts from acting 1-2 making personal acting choices that show variety, structure, and unity. Shakespearean monologues (figures of speech, Elizabethan character and plot, physicalizing the text, words as active images); Comedy Sketches (irony, timing, distortion, exaggeration, incongruity, status interactions, stock characters, reversal of expectation); Audition Technique (cold-reading, contemporary monologue).
Dance – ASA Dance program will be offered to interested students during enrichment hour at the end of each day (3pm-4pm).
- ASA students will have the opportunity throughout the year to participate in various dance productions.
- Broad goals of ASA dance program will include:
- Creative Expression: Choreography, Improvisation, Critical Evaluation
- Dance Heritage: History, Culture, Dance Careers, Body Awareness: Anatomy, Injury Prevention, Nutrition, Space, Warm-up
Literary Arts – Level 1 will be devoted to writing process, established by regular writing exercises designed to elicit real, meaningful work based on personal experience and knowledge. Students will be exposed to various writing genres in course readings and by occasional guest teachers and will be encouraged to respond to writing exercises as they see fit, authentically. As they begin to revise and complete work, they also participate in cooperative in-class workshops, publish work in ASA in-house magazine and newsletters, and eventually take part in public readings both on and off campus
Advanced grade goals will be devoted to writing research-based, character-driven short stories and providing students with the option of submitting work to various local and national competitions.