Friday, February 14, 2014

Drama Games & Activities for Kids, Teens & Adults PART 2

Theatre Games, Activities & Trust Exercises for Kids, Teens & Adults [PART 2]
Before you can play, rehearse, learn or build a production/performance - you need to build trust. 
These activities are some of my personal favourites whether I'm working with children, teenagers or adults in pairs or groups.
Before starting any activity - always state the purpose of the exercise (ie. voice warm-up or letting go of inhibitions) and conduct a quick "check-in" with members. After introducing the activity, ask each participant to briefly express how they are feeling and the kind of day they had. This is important to do in order to have a sense of everyone's mind space before starting. If someone had a bad day, they might not be as energetic or enthused where someone having a great day may have difficulties focusing and paying attention.
I hope these games and activities will help you in building trust amongst team members, classmates or a production cast & crew.
#7. PROPS/ quick-thinking, creativity, imagination & thinking outside of the box
  • Form a circle either sitting on the floor or in chairs
  • Place one or two identical but random objects (ie. gloves or fridge magnets) in the center
  • Go around the circle having each person go up to the objects and use them in a scene as something else (ie. gloves as shoes)
  • Encourage everyone in the group to get up and approach the objects quickly and come up with something on the spot.
  • Change things up by having people get up and approach the objects in a random pattern rather than taking turns going around the circle.

#8. MYSTERY SHOPPER/ acting in the moment and using body language to express intent
  • This activity works best in pairs
  • Person A pretends to be a cashier at a store
  • Person B portrays a customer
  • B approaches the counter and speaks to the cashier about purchasing a specific item
  • THERE'S A CATCH! - B can only speak in gibberish
  • A needs to try and understand what it is B is looking for
  • The scene is over when A correctly guesses the item and cashes the customer out
#9. WALK! WALK! WALK!/ situational comedy, group work, imagination and warm-up
  • In this activity, the entire group follows one leader
  • TECHNIQUE #1: the Leader walks around the room and everyone else copies their walk
  • TECHNIQUE #2: the Leader specifies that everyone should walk like someone or something (ie. the Terminator or a duckling)
  • TECHNIQUE#3: the Leader asks the group to walk around the room as if they are walking on a specific surface (ie. glass, ice or fire)
  • In all these instances, the leader could be a student, group member or instructor
#10. FORTUNATELY-UNFORTUNATELY/ teamwork, pairs & improve
  • Divide the group into pairs
  • The scene begins with one person starting a sentence with "Fortunately...."
  • The second person responds by saying a sentence starting with "Unfortunately..."
  • The scene continues with one person always saying "Fortunately" at the beginning of everything they say and the other person always saying "Unfortunately"
  • After awhile, switch up who says which word
  • (ie. "Fortunately, I caught the bus on time." "Unfortunately, the bus got a flat tire." etc.)
#11. BETWEEN THE LINES/ writing exercise, self-exploration, trust-building & group support
  • This exercise requires each individual to have a notebook or scrap paper and something to write with AND music that can be played helps in creating a safe atmosphere
  • Have everyone sit someone in the room in their own space
  • Each person has the length of one song to write a note or letter than is specified by the instructor.
  • These may include: Things I Like, Dear Self, I'm Afraid of..., I Wish, I Hate, I'm Sorry..., etc.
  • As soon as the instructor delivers the starting line or subject, the song is started and the participants have until the end of the song to write.
  • Encourage everyone to continue writing until the song ends.
  • This is a great exercise to get people out of their minds and opening up to others
  • Writing in a way that is not "judged", or checked for grammar or ideas of right & wrong is freeing. Ensure everyone feels safe to write away without holding back.
  • This is a "rambling on" activity done with a pen instead of talking
 #12. SNAKE/ touching, trust, body movement & body language
  • Establish a starting point and finish line (ie. this wall to that line or vice-versa)
  • Have the participants form a line
  • The first person touches the starting line with their body somehow and creates a shape with their body
  • The next person touches the first person somehow and creates another shape that is different in levels, shape, silhouette, etc.
  • This continues until a person on the "snake" touches the finish line
  • This can be done with small groups and the last person leap-frogs to the front when it is their turn again
  • CHANGE THINGS UP - give the participants a word they can use as inspiration for their shapes (ie. water, fire, monkey, Summer, etc.)
(coming soon)

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