On this page you can find all the of research and information that we share in our monthly Education Newsletters.

May 2017: Benefits of Summer Camp

Does it sometimes feel like summer vacation just means more work? With children out of school, schedules need to be balanced to accommodate everyone. Summer camp may seem like just an easy way to keep your child occupied, but it is so much more than that! Summer camp is an opportunity for your child to build skills and memories that will last a lifetime. Find more information about the benefits of summer camp below!

Why The World Needs Camp

How Summer Camp Helps Prepare Your Child for Adulthood

The Top Five Reasons Kids Should Go To Camp

April 2017: Theatre Education Degrees

Your child has been raised in the arts. They show a profound passion for theatre, but now it is time to start thinking of college. You had never considered their love of theatre as a viable career option.... but could it be? Theatre Education degree programs are popping up all over the country. 

Many holders of Theatre Education degrees go on to other fields other than being a K-12 school teacher. Some become Teaching Artists, some work as specialists, using theatre as a tool to teach other subjects or skills, and some move on to work for professional theatres (Like our very own Education Program Manager, Ashleigh!).

Here is a great place to start when searching out Theatre Education Programs!

Want to find out more about what it takes to be a theatre teacher?

 Check out this great video below by Emerson College which interviews one of their Theatre Education Majors about why she chose Theatre Ed.

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March 2017: Theatre in our Schools Month!

Theatre in Our Schools Month (TIOS) is a grassroots effort to draw attention to the benefits of having theatre in the schools, as well as the need for more access to quality programs for all students. 

International Thespian Society

American Alliance for Theatre and Education

Educational Theatre Association

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February 2017: Grooming Students for Success

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January 2017: LGBTQ and TYA

The title "Theatre for Young Audiences" often evokes a specific image: child-friendly theatre with messages and morals that are accessible to our youth. Recently this image has begun to shift to include space for conversations around sexuality, gender identity, and equality. Many communities are beginning to embrace the idea that theatre is a great way to start conversations, and that this concept carries over to our youth. The LGBTQ community may have been underrepresented in the TYA realm in the past, but this has changed. See below for more information about artists changing the conversation about gender and sexuality in Theatre for Young Audiences.

Nontraditional TYA: Queer TYA

Making Queer Theatre With Young People

Diversity in TYA: The Queer Agenda


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December 2016: Multiculturalism in Drama & Theatre for Youth

The field of theatre education and theatre for young audiences has made huge strides in engaging young people on the subject of race and ethnicity for the past ten years. Playwrights such as José Cruz Gonzaléz, Larissa FastHorse, and Caleen Jennings are writing original plays incorporating multiple languages and telling stories involving a variety of cultures, even addressing assimilation in American pop culture. Through drama and theatre education in the classroom, teaching artists are able to work with students to address these topics in the safe environment of play. 

Multicultural Atmosphere, Multicultural Experience

The TYA Multicultural Connection to Children's Books

Rights and Responsibilities of Representation in TYA

Melting Pot Theatre: Teaching for Cultural Understanding

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November 2016: Politics and TYA

It is election season! The country and world are buzzing with what has occurred during this presidential election. A big question is, how do adults navigate talking about the election to the youth of our country? Theatre has been a contributor to the conversation. Companies have produced TYA shows that have dealt with topics discussed in election, such as refugees and the pursuit of equal civil rights. How do we continue the conversation at home? Below are some helpful links that give insight on what some of the youth around the country are saying about our political climate. The resources below will also give some advice on how to educate children on politics.

Children Will Listen: TYA Shows Get Political 

Children Over Politics 

Teaching Your Children About Politics and Government

A 7-Year Old’s Take on the 2016 Presidential Election 

Helping Kids and Teens Navigate an Election Year

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October 2016: Process Drama

Process Drama is a dynamic teaching methodology in which the teacher and the students work together to create an imaginary dramatic world and work within that world to explore a particular problem, situation, theme, or series of related themes, not for a separate audience, but for the benefit of the participants themselves.

In a process drama, students play a range of roles and engage in a variety of reflective out-of-role activities, requiring them to think beyond their own points of view and consider the topic from multiple perspectives. They emerge with an expanded self-awareness, and a greater sense of the challenges and the possibilities facing the society in which they live.

Process drama also carries the potential for rigorous, standards-based learning to occur. Students not only explore the dynamics, relationships, and conflicts that shape a given situation, but also to acquire factual knowledge related to the topic of the drama. 

What’s My Position? Role, Frame, and Positioning When Using Process Drama

Process Drama: Taking a Walk in Someone Else's Shoes

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September 2016: Meet our Staff!

Our Education staff is hard at work with residencies, on-site classes, and planning for the upcoming year. Luckily, our amazing new Arts Leadership Training Program Intern Walter took a moment to interview each member of the team!

To learn more about our staff, check out the interviews below!

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August 2016: The Benefits of Art in Schools

Every young person should have access to the arts as a part of their education. Instruction in the arts allows opportunity for critical thinking skills to be honed, as well as deeper processing for emotional growth and confidence-building. The arts allow students to express themselves through visual art, dance, drama, music, and writing/poetry; honing their communication skills and providing a healthy outlet for their social and cognitive development as they learn more about the world around them.

The Effects of Theatre Education (from American Alliance for Theatre & Education)

Critical Evidence: How the Arts Benefit Student Achievement

The Importance of Art in Child Development

Why the Arts?

Benefit of Arts in Primary School (video)

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July 2016: Creative Dramatics

Creative Dramatics is an integrative process that develops imaginative thought and creative expression. Through the use of movement, pantomime, improvisation, story dramatization and group discussion, students acquire language and communication skills, social awareness, problem-solving abilities, self-concept enhancement, and an understanding of theatre. Rather than an attempt to create professional child actors, the goal of Creative Drama is to guide a child to self-fulfillment through the process of theatre techniques.

Rationale for Creative Dramatics in the Classroom

Dorothy Heathcote - Pioneer of Educational Drama

Childrens Theatre of Charlotte - Creative Dramatics Video

The Power of Creative Drama in Social Studies

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June 2016: Taboos in Theatre for Young Audiences

Plays that deal with taboos in TYA are most often completely proscribed. The complex relationship between young people, performance, and changing social, political, economic, idealogical, and cultural circumstances under which youth is perceived greatly effects the work that is coming to our stages for young people. Is it good for TYA companies to tackle "taboo" subjects on the stage? Many have done so successfully, in regards to engagement and critical success - though, often, not financial success.Many companies, playwrights, and teaching artists grapple with this concept every day.

Taboos in Theatre for Young Audiences

A TYA Artist turned Gatekeeper

And then Came Tango

And Then Came Tango

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May 2016: Original Stories for Young Audiences

Playwrights have been writing stories for young audiences for a very long time.  In the last 100 years, there has been focus on researching and developing TYA . Much of the work that has been created has been adaptations of fairy tales, popular books or films. However, playwrights have been writing many original stories for young audiences that are innovative, rich, and full. Sadly, many of these plays are very rarely produced, due in great part by the pressure to produce known works/adaptations - in much the same way that known plays, like Death of a Salesman or Romeo & Juliet, are often produced. Question that companies producing TYA are asking are: How do we best introduce original plays to audiences? Will parents bring their children to see a story they are not already familiar with? There are many more factors that go into play, to read more about this topic, check out the articles and links below.

An Interview with Seven TYA Playwrights

At Play in the Field of TYA - a Guide for the Uninitiated

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April 2016: American Theatre Magazine features TYA!

For the month of April, American Theatre magazine chose to take a look at the world of theatre for young audiences; tackling taboos, calling into question the relevancy and importance of theatre for young people - even if they don't remember every last detail, and speaking to innovations that are happening in the field. Please find in the next column some personal favorites of their featured articles and give them a read!

Youth Theatre is not Wasted on the Young

The Taboo of Sadness: Why are we scared to let children be scared?

Whats so Special About Kids Today?

The TYA Canon: How Licensing Agencies Build Artists and Audiences

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March 2016: Process and Product in Theatre for Youth & Communities

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February 2016: Sensory Friendly Theatre

Over the past 20 years, theatre artists and innovators have been working to find more ways to reach all audiences. Special performances are being created for young people on the autism spectrum and sensory-friendly performances are starting to be more common at TYA companies across the US!

Lincoln Center Education, Up and Away

The Dream of Creating All Sorts of Theatre for All Sorts of Kids

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January 2016: Theatre for the Very Young

TVY is a specialized form of theatre that is created specifically for ages 6 months -3! Its highly interactive and innovative style has become a growing trend in the Theatre for Young Audiences field! 

5 Attributes of Quality Theatre for the Very Young

Oily Cart Theatre Company

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