As most drama educators know, Theatresports™ games are a hell of a lot of fun in the classroom. Perhaps the best thing about them is that they can literally be used with any age group. Theatresports™ games appeal to primary/elementary students who love simple examples of them so much they are clinging off you as you instruct how to play them(!). High school students find them fun, challenging and rewarding and they can be great to use with adults as well.
There are hundreds of Theatresports™ games for use in your Drama or Theatre class. They are most valuable to acquire these essential skills for any student actor:
- quick thinking
- using the imagination
- role play
- voice use
- physicality with characters
But be warned! We are all human and nearly all of us have played Theatresports™ on occasions to fill left over time in a Drama class or for fun at the end of school term. But Theatresports™ are best played with purpose. The games fall into many categories and are best used in conjunction with a relevant activity that extends upon the game. For example, a movement-based Theatreposrts™ game may be played to introduce a new topic on movement in Drama. The same could be done for voice. Theatresports™ games that are carefully chosen by the teacher (or student) with reason, have the most effect on the students’ learning in Drama.
The good news is, several wonderful Theatresports™ sites exist on the web. Here are a few to get you started:
- Improv Encyclopedia is an awesome site. You will find over 500 Theatreports™ games here! They are all neatly categorised into sections, some formal games, others warm-ups and exercises. All of them well explained. If that’s not all, there’s also a glossary of improv terms and a resource list of improv books and other websites. Just in case you wanted the steak knives as well….the whole thing is downloadable to your desktop (and more importantly your printer….and then your Drama classroom) in a 166-page pdf file. These guys deserve a medal!
- The Living Playbook comes from Unexpected Productions in Seattle and has nearly 350 Theatresports™ games and related exercises, including an improv glossary as well.
- Sheer Idiocy has over 100 Theatresports™ games and about 60 exercises.
For more Theatreports™-related material on the web, check out my Theatreports™ links page at my other website Justin’s Theatre Links.
What’s your favourite Theatreports™ game? Have you had any memorable moments playing Theatreports™? It would be great to hear a few comments about people’s Theatresports™ stories. I’m sure there’s a few hilarious experiences out there!
Post updated 30 March 2011.