Responsibility in Drama Class
January 28, 2004
I have taught theater for many years and have sometimes had similar students with behavior/emotional problems in my classes. The first thing I do is try to talk with the students individually (in the hall or before class) to let them know that I care and am interested in their wellbeing.
However, I have had the most success by trying to involve these students in physical tasks that give them some responsibility, and for which they can feel successful and important. For instance, I try to give these students little jobs in the classroom to help them feel special. Or if we are going to do a play, I will assign the students a small part in the play that I believe they can master. Or I will have the students be part of the stage crew or even work in the light booth with supervision. If we are doing a puppet show, I ask them to help me assemble our puppet stage and possibly be the MC for the show.
I have found that these special students, who find some measure of success in the theater, take great pride in themselves and will behave for me in the classroom.