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Drama: A Family Connection

by
Cheryl E. Merritt


Contents of Curriculum Unit 90.02.06:

To Guide Entry


Learning that a drama is much like life itself, a composition designed for a performance is the major goal of this unit. The middle school student grades 5-8 are the targets. Students ranging in ability from remedial to above average performance levels. I will use this unit with sixth grade students. As humans we prepare each day for performances, whether it be as a parent, student, teacher, counselor, employee, or employer. The student will learn also that drama is nothing but a series of events strung together, connected by day and night. They will note that each act involves conflicts and forces that could strongly determine the next act of life.

As the unit is developed the family is stressed as the prime ethical value. This curriculum will lend support, strength, power and involvement to adolescents and their families. Students will see a need to establish loving and stable families while growing into adulthood. This unit could be considered a rehearsal as students prepare to direct or redirect their lives through planning constructive and attainable goals for themselves and their families.

The development of this unit will take one full school year. One marking period (8-10 weeks) dedicated to social problem-solving. One half of the second marking period to substance abuse prevention. The next marking period and a half will provide a survey of the history of drama and the actual development, writing process, and the revision of the finished product. Finally the last quarter should be set aside for the preparation and production.

The students will learn behavioral problem solving skills that promote successful strategies for coping with stressful situations. These strategies are accomplished by teaching students a 6-step problem-solving process. The three main units are stress management, six problem-solving steps, and behavioral social skills. This is followed by a substance use prevention module.

The objectives to be covered in the introduction of the social problem-solving module are stated in the manual. Those objectives are as follows:

1. TO INTRODUCE THE SOCIAL PROBLEM-SOLVING PROGRAM TO THE STUDENTS.
2. TO INTRODUCE CONCEPTS INVOLVED IN PROBLEM-SOLVING.
3. TO DEFINE STRESS AND DISCUSS SITUATIONS THAT PRECIPITATE IT.
4. TO IDENTIFY PHYSICAL SYMPTOMS OF STRESS.
5. TO BEGIN TO DEVELOP A STRESS AND PROBLEM-SOLVING VOCABULARY.
6. TO INTRODUCE THE PROBLEM-SOLVING APPROACH AS A METHOD FOR EFFECTIVELY HANDLING STRESS.
The Yale-New Haven Social Problem-Solving Program for Adolescents training workshop for teachers is the recommended prerequisite to the actual writing of the drama. For information, materials or training contact:

ROGER P. WEISSBERG, PH.D

DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY

BOX 11A YALE STATION

YALE UNIVERSITY

NEW HAVEN, CT 06520-7447

(203) 432-4530

Each student will compile a Problem Diary that will be used to generate a list of ideas for a subject. Children should be allotted time each day to record in the diary. Additional input will be solicited from the family by means of a family worksheet, (see sample) that the students will be assigned as homework. At the appropriate time students will be assigned to groups who will compare and discuss their diaries and then select a subject for writing project. Students will then be able to begin a working outline.

Students should be made aware that they are not expected to identify and label problems very easily at the beginning but they will become better as they learn more about this process. After explaining to students what type of information will go into the diaries students should be allowed to ask questions. The teacher should also give examples based on their personal experiences.

It is also important that the students are comfortable with each other. A get acquainted exercise should be done very early. On the following page is an activity to help students get to know each other and those who know each other already will learn new interesting things. It is also important to start using feeling words and sharing feelings with others. Students will find that it can be fun and healthy from activities such as, “How I Feel”, which is presented in a sample form.

Problem solving vocabulary is vital. The teacher should stress the definitions as often as possible. It would be a good idea to post them around the classroom so that students can see them every day.

TERMS TO KNOW

PROBLEM: A problem is a situation that makes someone feel upset and

stressed.

PROBLEM SOLVING: Problem solving is doing something to make an upsetting situation better.

GOAL: A goal is how you want things to end up.

SOLUTION: A solution is a way to solve a problem.

CONSEQUENCE: A consequence is what happens next after you try a solution.

PLAN: A plan is the ingredients needed to make a solution work.

Learning these terms can be reinforced with matching activities, oral check-ups, etc.

Students will be able to continue through this unit with little difficulty. Teachers will find it workable with students at all levels of ability. The activities are interesting and exciting. The learning experiences are not limited to the classroom but can be used in all aspects of a child’s life. Oh, teachers if you find you begin to handle your own stressful situations differently and the stresses in your life become easier to deal with, it’s OK. That happens quite often.

FAMILY PROBLEM DIARY

WHAT TO DO: ASK TWO PEOPLE IN YOUR FAMILY THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS AND RECORD THEIR RESPONSES ON THIS SHEET.

PERSON #1
Name a situation that has happened between you and another person that made someone feel stressed.

______________________________________________

______________________________________________

______________________________________________

What are three things you do when you feel stress?

1. __________ 2. __________ 3. __________

Can you identify three physical reactions that your body has to let you know that you are experiencing stress?

1. __________ 2. __________ 3. __________

PERSON #2
Name a situation that has happened between you and another person that made someone feel stressed.

______________________________________________

______________________________________________

______________________________________________

What are three things you do when you feel stress?

1. __________ 2. __________ 3. __________

Can you identify three physical reactions that your body has to let you know that you are experiencing stress?

1. __________ 2. __________ 3. __________

sample activity

GETTING ACQUAINTED

IT IS FUN TO FIND OUT INTERESTING THINGS ABOUT OTHER PEOPLE. SOMETIMES YOU FIND OUT THAT YOU HAVE A LOT OF THINGS IN COMMON.

ASK SOMEONE THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS AND SEE HOW MANY NEW THINGS YOU LEARN ABOUT YOUR CLASSMATES.

1. WHAT IS YOUR FULL NAME? ____________________
________       first middle last
2. WHO GAVE YOU YOUR NAME? ____________________
3. WHO LIVES IN YOUR HOUSE? ____________________
_____________________________________________
4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TV SHOW? ____________________
5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SUBJECT IN SCHOOL? ____________________
6. WHO IS YOUR BEST FRIEND? ____________________
7. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE HOBBY? ____________________
8. WHERE IS THE MOST INTERESTING PLACE YOU HAVE EVER BEEN? _________
_____________________________________________
9. IF YOU COULD GO ANY PLACE IN THE WORLD, WHERE WOULD YOU GO? _________
_____________________________________________
10. WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT YOURSELF? ____________________
11. WHO IS SOMEONE YOU ADMIRE A LOT? ____________________
12. WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO DO WHEN YOU GROW UP? _________
_____________________________________________
13. IF YOU HAD ONE WISH WHAT WOULD IT BE? _________
_____________________________________________
*****

NOW CHOOSE THREE (3) THINGS FROM THIS SHEET TO TELL THE CLASS ABOUT THIS PERSON.

sample activity

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“HOW I FEEL”

HERE ARE A LIST OF WORDS THAT TELL HOW WE FEEL. FIND THEM IN THE PUZZLE.

HAPPY JEALOUS ANGRY SAD
HURT GOOD MAD SHY
CONFUSED UPSET ASHAMED BRAVE
EXCITED WORRIED EMBARRASSED IMPORTANT
E X C I T E D B B R A V E P M

V J E A L O U S U P S E T V A

J X C O N F U S E D H A M L D

H U R T I M P O R T A N T O H

F R I G H T E N E D M G G N A

S W O R R I E D B K E R O E P

A S H Y X V L O V E D Y O L P

D K E M B A R R A S S E D Y Y

CAN YOU FIND THE SECRET WORD? ___ _O_ ___ ___ _D_.

WHEN I AM BEING PUNISHED I FEEL __________.

WHEN I MAKE A NEW FRIEND I FEEL __________.

WHEN MY PARENTS ARGUE I FEEL __________.

ON THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL I FEEL __________.

WHEN I CAN’T FIND SOMETHING I FEEL __________.

FEELINGSAREOKFEELINGSAREOKFEELINGSAREOKFEELINGSAREOKFEELINGSAREOK

The SUBSTANCE USE PREVENTION MODULE will stress the following objectives:

1. To introduce the module on substance use prevention.
2. To establish goals for a healthy life.
3. To apply Social Problem-Solving skills to peer pressure.
4. To make students aware of support systems available to prevent substance use.
The focus is specifically on the prevention of substance use. Programs are being developed and implemented in many school curricula. This appears to be a very promising approach.

Students will have knowledge of the effects of nicotine, alcohol, and drugs that are illegal. These drugs are harmful to the body and mind. They will analyze the hazards, compare the short and long-term physical, social, and mental effects of substance use. Students will also learn to evaluate the factors that influence the abuse of drugs and discuss the role advertisements play in alcohol and nicotine abuse. Through discussions they will explore the concept of chemical dependency and practice their problem-solving skills in order to avoid or refuse substance use.

Students will identify sources of influence and recognize that individuals make choices. It is important they understand that some behavior can be risky and that all behavior result in some type of consequence. They will practice ways to say “no” and give positive feedback to peers. All children have a need to belong to a group. They need to understand their role as an individual in peer groups as well as family groups. Their individual strengths and weaknesses must be very clear to them. This will help increase their self-esteem and accept responsibility for their own actions.

Reviewing with students common problems facing young people their age the teacher will be able to generate a discussion of issues to be focused on in this module. Some activities included in this unit are identifying and achieving personal goals; identifying role models; an interview with someone the student admires; understanding the difference between short and long-term goals; the study of fact sheets on tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, and crack; myths and reality discussions; parent interview of the consequences of drugs to open communication between parents and children; and practical application activities.

Now that students have mastered the problem-solving skills and have experienced some role playing they will use this information to develop a drama using the family as a resource and support unit.

The teacher may want to transfer this section of the unit to a literature class or reading group. Students should be grouped in teams of 5-7 students per team. They will use diaries to generate ideas within the group to choose a problem to deal within a drama.

Students should also be reminded often that the family will be viewed as a major support system. While this is going on they will also study the development of drama. Students will follow the development of drama from its origin or conception to the actual production. Through lectures and a study of the history of drama students will distinguish between the different types of drama. This is vital as background knowledge for students. They may also have a better understanding of drama if they have some knowledge of its history. Several lessons should be designated to presenting information on the origin of drama. This unit will include material used to give insight to the teacher as well as information that will also be discussed. Some students may be ready to digest this type of information. Others will not. This is left to the discretion of the teacher. Students should be aware of various types of drama, their similarities and their contrast so they are not locked into one mold.

The next few pages will present points to be covered in this study. I reserve to later, a discussion of the ways the writing process will be introduced even though this will be done simultaneously.

A drama is a work of literature or a composition which delineates life and human activities by means of presenting various actions of a dialogue between a group of characters. Drama is furthermore designed for theatrical presentation; that is although we speak of a drama as a literary work or a composition, we must never forget that drama is designed to be acted on the stage. When we read a play we have no real grasp of what that play is like unless we imagine how actors on a stage present the material. Drama is more than the representation of life and character through action and dialogue. Drama is also entertainment.

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THE BEGINNING

Drama commenced with religious celebrations; out of the various pagan rites and festivals arose the earliest drama of an entertaining kind. Specifically, Greek tragedy and Greek comedy. It seems worthwhile to survey briefly the development of drama as a generic form. They all try to capture moments of life.

Greek Tragedy arose from the patterns of Dionysian rites of life and death. That is, from the very start, Greek tragedy addressed itself to serious dimensions of life and human character.

Greek comedy also arose out of early religious celebrations. Specifically from the Dionysian rites of fertility. The earliest Greek comedies not only dealt with fertility but also with phallic ceremonies, and although comedy slowly moved away from this original association, many of the very earliest plays were extremely sexual in both costume and script. Greek comedy is generally divided into three categories: Old Comedy, Middle Comedy, and New Comedy. In Old Comedy we discover a great deal of boisterous comment on affairs of state through political satire. Old Comedy is best exemplified by plays such as, “The Frog and The Birds”, by the early Greek dramatist Aristophanes. Middle Comedy has no surviving examples.

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CONTRAST

When Rome declined as an empire the whole business of drama went into hiding for a great length of time. Eventually the dramatic mood was reborn, this time evolving out of the liturgical services of the church. Around the beginning of the fifteenth century emerged the Morality Play. It differed from the earlier religious dramas because it contained certain abstract passions, vices, and virtues that were presented on stage by actors in bizarre costumes. By the late sixteenth century, Elizabethan drama had become the best in the history of world literature. How easy it is to mention Shakespeare.

Some believe that plays are no more suited for silent reading than music scores. However, drama is conceived and recorded in words. Every reader of a play is a self-appointed director with a theater in his own mind. Before you know it you are living the story—laughing, loving, hating, struggling, and winning! All of the adventure, all of the romance, all of the excitement one lacks in daily life are in drama.

The stage performer establishes between himself and his audience a contact as real as electricity.

“All the worlds a stage . . .” and most of the men and women living in it are stage struck. The term “stage-struck” implies a form of universal madness which does not exist in any other calling, I never heard of a banker who is “bank-struck”.

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THE SUBJECT THE STORY THE THEME

A creative playwright will select the kind of subject he really wants to and he will be brimful of his own ideas. These ideas will keep beating at his brain until he puts them on paper. Then he decide which idea is most susceptible to treatment for the theatre. In a sense the theatre is capable of dealing with a kind of subject no matter how fantastic, realistic, spiritual or political.

It has room for expansion and for explanation of all kinds of religious phenomena, philosophical thought, and the vulgarities of humanity as well as its highest aspirations. The playwright will naturally choose the subject which is closest to his heart.

It would be a mistake to assume that each and every idea can be written in a play form. A subject which calls for enormous quantities of scenery should be ruled out. Or write a play for stage without using scenery at all.

The kind of subject that is usually best suited is one in which there is a major situation or situations involving conflict between characters of groups of characters; or between characters and their destiny. This would build in conflict, interest, or intensity leading to some sort of conclusion. A typical example is the conflict between Hamlet, his uncle and mother. This ended in tragedy for all three. Often an individual may be in conflict with himself.

In the first part of Hamlet his irresolution plays a part of his character. In THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, a play about the fate of a small Jewish family which lived in hiding in Amsterdam during the period of the Nazi tracking, conflict was with fate. The Nazi discover their hiding place and capture them and finally overwhelms them with death. No matter what the subject a play must have a beginning, a middle and an end. Today a play should have a rapid beginning, a middle which builds in excitement and an end which completes the play.

In a drama or tragedy scene after scene of mounting interest build up tension until a point is reached when the play attains its highest moment of excitement. These plays are most interesting when the audience is able to perceive that the events which take place in one scene are responsible for the events which take place in the next, or later scenes. In comedy the mounting scenes are piled one on top of the other in succession until a hilarious climax is achieved. In all cases the resolution which arrives toward the end of the play constitutes an ending which satisfies the audience by reason. There must be an understanding of the human spirit in the case of high tragedy, or the solution, or suggestion of a solution, of the human problems involved in the case of comedy.

Authors can enlarge a subject by including an important theme. In the present era dealing with problems of life can be seriously dealt with in drama. It is good to remember that many plays have included themes but magnificent plays have been written without them. For instances, Shakespeare teaches a great deal about human beings through the characterization of individuals, although none of them show his point of view toward the social problems of his day.

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Some Types of Drama

TRAGEDY has the solemnity, seriousness and finality we often associate with death. Tragedy suggest an incompatibility between the energy of surge of life and the laws of life or norms of society.

Comedy has the joy and fertility and suggestion of a new life we often associate with marriage and birth. Comedy suggests that norms are valid and necessary.

Tragicomedy is much newer than tragedy and comedy. It appears about 186 B.C., when Plautus spoke of tragicocomoedia in his “Amphitryon”, a Roman comedy in which gods assume mortal shapes in order to dupe a husband and seduce his wife. Tragicomedy is sometimes defined as a mixture or as a play in which bits of comedy are added to a tragedy. Some may feel that it is not so much a union of tragedy and comedy but an exclusion of both, lacking the awe we associate with tragedy and the fun we associate with comedy.

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WRITING

Now let’s begin to write! As the writing begins remind students that there is no right or wrong way to solve a problem. Since some problems may have more than one possible solution, working on the solving of problems open everyone to their own source of power.

Familiarize students with the language of drama exposing them to terms that are used often. This could be done by giving them handouts or writing definitions on the board. Terms such as listed below should be included.

1. DRAMA is a composition intended to portray life or to tell a story usually involving conflicts and emotions through action and dialogue. It is typically designed for theatrical performance.
2. SETTING is the time and place of the action in a drama.
3. COSTUMES are outfits worn to create the appearance characteristic of a particular period, person, place, or thing.
4. GESTURES are motions of the body or limbs as a means of expression.
5. SOUND EFFECTS are imitations of sounds called for in the script of a play, radio, television program or movie.
6. DIALOGUE is a written composition in which two or more characters are conversing.
7. PLOT is the plan or main story of a drama.
8. CHARACTER is one of the persons of a drama of novel.
9. THEME is a subject or topic.
10. SCENERY is the painted scenes or hangings and accessories used on a theatrical stage.
This can be followed up by oral reviews or written reviews and quizzes. The teacher may also decide to introduce only a few terms at a time. This should be thought about very carefully because ability levels of the students will vary.

Before separating students into groups they will need some guidelines for the writing process. The following outline can be divided into four or five lessons taught consecutively or staggered as students reach each stage of writing.

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GUIDELINES FOR THE WRITING PROCESS

I. PREWRITING
____A. Choose a problem that interest you. (From your Problem Diary)
____B. Make a web of possible solutions.
____C. Select a solution and narrow it.
____D. Make a web of details that you could use to develop your topic.
____E. Jot down any notes or ideas related to your topic.
____(Add to your web.)
____F. Learn more about your topic if you need to.
________1. Research your topic.
________2. Talk to someone about your topic.
________3. Ask questions about it.
II. WRITING THE FIRST DRAFT
____A. Begin to write.
____B. Continue to write without worrying about mechanics or stopping to correct at this stage.
____C. Let your thoughts flow freely.
____D. Conference and determine which thoughts the group think are important or interesting.
____E. Have a content conference with the teacher.
III. REWRITING OR REVISING
____A. Have one person read aloud what you have written.
____B. Did you stick to the topic?
____C. Did you include everything you wanted to?
____D. Did you include all necessary information?
____E. Did you leave out details?
____F. Do you like what you have written?
____G. Is it interesting and lively?
____H. Do your ideas flow smoothly?
____I. Are your ideas clearly expressed?
____J. Is each word the right word?
________1. The best word?
________2. Check a Thesaurus.
____K. Organize your work logically, with a beginning, a middle, and an end.
____L. Rethink your information.
____M. Alter your form from story to play.
____N. Rewrite or revise.
________1. Add information.
________2. Change words.
________3. Subtract repeated words or unnecessary details.
IV. PROOFREADING AND EDITING
____A. Read the revised draft.
____B. Check for correct capitalization.
____C. Check spelling.
________1. Circle words you think are misspelled.
________2. Use a dictionary.
____D. Check to see that all punctuation is correct.
____E. Check for mechanics.
____F. Prepare the piece for a reader’s eyes.
____G. Have a final editing conference with the teacher.
____H. Make a final copy.
________1. Follow correct form.
________2. Use your best handwriting.
The teacher should also provide students with a uniformed method of editing.

EDITING MARKS
(figure available in print form)
The purpose of the conference is to help students react to their own writing to diagnose possible writing problems and make an attempt to solve them. Teachers should remember to:

1. Listen to the writer.
2. Allow the writer to teach you.
3. Respond to the content first.
4. Handle one problem at a time.
5. Avoid asking yes/no questions. (whenever possible)
6. Keep it short.

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POSSIBLE TYPES OF QUESTIONS AND RESPONSES USED DURING CONFERENCES:

How’s it going?
Tell me about the piece.
What part do you like best?
Ask questions about any part that is not clear.
Why did you choose this problem?
What did you learn from this piece of writing?
How does this draft sound when you read it out loud?
What do you think you can do to make the piece better?
What problems are you having?
What is the most important thing you are trying to say?
Tell the writers what you specifically like about the piece?
Is all your information important to the audience?
Are there parts you don’t need?
How can I help you more?
NOTE: The teacher should give each student the chance to participate in the discussion. Direct questions or solicit comments from those students who may be-reluctant to talk.

One major advantage of being teacher/director, the teacher can help students maintain consistency in the behavior of the characters. The teacher/director will also supply material not provided specifically in the text to help the actors envision their immediate objectives in the play.

After students are well into the writing process, I plan to use RAISIN IN THE SUN by Lorrain Hansberry to demonstrate various aspects of pulling an actual production together. As an introduction students would be assigned roles and read Act I in class. After a brief discussion of the characters and their objectives students would watch the production in its entirety on video. (This would save time.)

In this drama a black family that has struggled to get out of the slums for a generation, finally after the death of the father, they see the money from the life insurance as their first real chance. The conflict occurs when everyone has different ideas about how to use the money. Lena (Mama) wants to buy a home in a better neighborhood. Banetha, her oldest daughter, wants to go to medical school. Her son Walter, who lives with Mama, has a wife, a son, and an unexpected baby on the way, wants to invest in a liquor store with some friends. Walter feels that his mother won’t let him assume his position as the head of the family.

Three or four scenes will be selected and blocked out by the teacher/director and student groups. Students will remain in groups they are already assigned to.

Teachers may choose other works if they seem more suited for their population of students. i.e., THE OXCART about a Puerto Rican family that migrates to America and must overcome several obstacles. Spanish students may be able to relate easily to this drama.

Advanced students may enjoy the musical WEST SIDE STORY. A drama about rival gangs. The conflict become more and more intense when the leader of one gang’s sister falls in love with another gang member. Students may recognize that this is an updated version of Shakespeare’s ROMEO AND JULIET.

Each class period can begin with some type of warm-up activity. They will take approximately five to ten minutes. These activities should cover skills such as improvisation, individualization, stimulation of the imagination, and images.

SAMPLE ACTIVITIES

ACTIVITY 1

If possible take students to a preschool to observe young children at play. Students will bring paper and pencils to record what type of drama they see going on, in the doll corner, the block corner, etc. From their observation they will learn that improvisation provides a practical means of exploring reality, coordinate skills, and investigate.

*A VIDEO OF CHILDREN AT PLAY CAN ALSO BE AFFECTIVE.

ACTIVITY 2

Divide the class into two groups. Give each group a problem situation. Allow five minutes to discuss and plan. Then each group will give their spontaneous interpretation in the form of a drama.

Situation A
You have just received a letter requesting that you board a space vehicle that will take you to a newly discovered planet. You must go there and build a whole new community.

Situation B
After setting up a community, there is a public meeting called in order to protest against pollution of the only river on the entire planet. Students must appraise the problem and discuss the arguments for or against the various solutions suggested.

ACTIVITY 3

STIMULATING THE IMAGINATION

Various stimuli can be used to increase concentration and extend the imagination.

Several students will be asked to use their imaginations. Students who volunteer will participate first. The student will be given an index card with a real situation on it. Using their own imagination the student will act out the situation and the class must guess what they are doing.

EXAMPLES: You just got a new football.
You tried marijuana for the first time.

You are playing with a gun, it went off and the bullet hit Mom.

A lady whose purse was just snatched by a drug addict.

Using small groups of students scenes will be devised in which all the characters except one are: deaf, unable to speak, can’t taste, or blind. Or imagine you are in a world in which everyone is very small, tall, alcoholic, or from another time period and drugs are legal.

ACTIVITY 4

MIRROR IMAGES

One student will touch one other student of a group sitting in a circle. They may only touch the edge of their foot. Then begin movements. The person touched will respond in harmony, rising, falling, spreading out, moving around the space at different rates. One follows the movements of the other until the teacher says, “change”’ and the person touched will touch someone new. They could also begin with occupational movements like shaving, make up, brushing your teeth, washing your face, or dressing for a date.

POINTERS (students)

1. DO NOT RUSH.
2. ASK QUESTIONS WHEN RELATIONSHIPS BECOME FUZZY AND DETAILS ARE LOST.
3. INDIVIDUALS WHO ACT, AGREE, AND SHARE TOGETHER.
4. IT IS THE ENERGY RELEASED THAT FORMS THE SCENE.
5. BE FLEXIBLE.
6. ACT DON’T REACT.

POINTERS (teachers)

1. DON’T RUSH.
2. WHEN NECESSARY, QUIETLY COACH.
3. SHOW STUDENTS, DON’T TELL. THIS MEANS DIRECT CONTACT AND INDIRECT COMMUNICATION.
4. IT IS NOT UNUSUAL TO MAKE ADDITIONS AS THE WORK PROGRESSES.
5. BE CERTAIN THAT NO ONE IS BLOCKED OFF.
6. IF STUDENTS BECOME RESTLESS AND STATIC, END IMMEDIATELY AND USE SOME WARM UP EXERCISES OR GAMES.
7. BECOME FAMILIAR WITH GAME BOOKS.
8. OBSERVE THE AUDIENCE REACTION FOR INTEREST LEVELS AND RESTLESSNESS.

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Student Reading List

Hansberry, Lorraine. A Raisin in the Sun. New York: New American Library, 1959.

The story of a black family and their struggle to get out of the slums.

Laurents, Arthur. West Side Story. New York: Random House, 1958.

Rival gangs are at odds when the sister of a gang leader falls in love with a member of another gang.

Marques, Rene. The Oxcart. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1969.

English translation by Charles Pilditch. Contains photographs of an actual production by the Puerto Rican Traveling Theatre, New York, 1967.

Videos

(available at Tommy K’s Video)

A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry

West Side Story by Arthur Laurents

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Teacher Bibliography

Barker, Clive. Theatre Games: A New Approach to Drama Training. Great Britain: Metheun London Ltd., 1983.

This is a detailed system of playing various games.

Canfield, Curtis. The Craft of Play Directing. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, Inc., 1963.

Teacher/directors will find this book is a tool toward developing techniques and methods to obtain certain effects.

Chekov, Michael. To the Actor On the Technique of Acting. New York: Harper and Row Publishers, 1953.

This book will help teacher/directors teach actors to practice techniques of acting.

Dorcy, Jean. The Mime. New York: Robert Speller and Sons, Publishers, Inc., 1961.

Although this book is designed for adults, the teacher/director could find the background knowledge about Mime used in role play and drama rehearsals.

Hodgson, John and Ernest Richards. Improvisation. London: Methuen London Ltd., 1983.

Teachers will find the best qualities needed for the best acting and lessons concerned with real education in this book.

Spolin, Viola. Theatre Games For the Classroom: A Teacher’s Handbook. Grades 4-6. Illinois: Northwestern University Press, 1986.

This book is useful as a basis for theater training. Teacher/directors can free the students of mechanical stage behavior. Detailed workshop programs are provided for teacher use.

Way, Brian. Development Through Drama. New Jersey: Humanities Press, 1973.

The practical experiences of drama with young people will help teachers use drama as an educational tool.

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