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12 Rehearsal to Performance Tips and Keys to Success for Students

publication date: Oct 8, 2010
author/source: Carol Montgomery

ReadersTheaterAllYearBugReaders Theater Rehearsal to Performance Tips

Okay, so you've decided to join the ranks of the Readers Theater testers.  What in the world do you tell the students?  How do you get the best out of them that will really help build them as leaders?  Here are a few tips based on years of experience and a little research...

Rehearsal to Performance Tips for Students

Tip #1:
  Stand/sit tall.  (Like a string is pulling your head and body up to the ceiling.)

Tip #2:
  Hold your script up so you can see and speak over the top of it. 

Tip #3:
  Try to look up once in awhile.

Tip #4:
  Speak loudly and clearly, not too fast.

Tip #5:
  Face the audience and speak to them.

Tip #6:
  Become your character and react in the story.  Gestures are great!

Performance Keys to Success for Students

Key #1:
  Wait to speak if the audience is laughing.  They want to hear you!

Key #2:  Ignore mistakes.  Let the teacher or director deal with it. 

Key #3:  Focus on interpreting the character for the audience.

Key #4:  Do your best.  Even adults make mistakes reading aloud!

Key #5:  Speak loudly and clearly, not too fast.

Key #6:  Have fun!  Relax!  Smile!  If you enjoy your performance, so will your audience.

BONUS TIP:  For great vocal projection, breathe deeply.  Breathe from the deep.  When you take a deep breath, your shoulders should not go up.  But, your stomach should push out naturally--not forced. 

To really feel this lay on the floor on your back with your hands on your stomach.  Take a deep breath.  In a deep breath your hands will be pushed up some naturally.  (This is a technique used by voice teachers to increase awareness of where the breath comes from.)

NOTE:  Everyone knows a leader needs to be able to project.  One way to build leadership skills is encouraging students to project their voices across a room.  When the microphone is not working, what else will a leader do?

Readers Theater All Year™ LLC builds leaders and creators for positive influence through an inexpensive, easy, flexible system.  Readers Theater All Year™ LLC curriculum services provides a caring community for using and creating Readers Theater scripts for families, classrooms, homeschools, camps, and drama clubs.

Praise from Teachers

...Keep doing what you are doing.  There are not enough quality scripts available for children and teens.  So many are inappropriate from a parent's perspective.  As a teacher I want to also build character and integrity while I teach a subject.  Why can't drama build up, inspire and be thought provoking?...Anyway, keep doing what you're doing...we need all the help we can get!
Jen H., Drama teacher

> ...I have been teaching for 35 years. RT has been part of my education journey for the majority of that time. Initially my experience with it was as a performance genre in the Drama Curriculum. Now I use it across the curriculum - a wonderful high motivation strategy in the language program - particularly reading - and so much more as you would know. I was drawn to your 'community' by the idea of leadership... I think what you're doing is wonderful..."
Graham B. Former primary teacher (now a Visual Art and Drama specialist)

Readers Theater All Year is the most comprehensive collection of Readers Theater scripts and resources I have found on the internet!...Thank you Carol for your leadership and vision and for making Readers Theater so accessible for teachers and parents.
Daniel Fiore, Elementary teacher/author What They Have Taught Me

I found the free readers theater online scripts, teaching tips, and curriculum teleseminars at Readers Theater All Year very inspirational to me. I used the Twelve Days of Christmas...Vacation script in my ESOL classes before Christmas break and my students all enjoyed it..
Lily T. Teacher (English for Speakers of Other Languages)

"> ..We did Squanto's Squash for the family on Thanksgiving and [my sons] participated and loved it. I am so excited about making this a major part of homeschooling. What a great way to learn!
Bethany P. Homeschooling Mom

> our script "The Earth Day Hen and Friends" I've used this! The kids love it. Thank you for sharing...It's just right for all levels in the class...Your free scripts are wonderful!...They learn so much from drama and reader's theatre...I see the shy ones gain confidence as they read. Fluency and prosody increases with reader's theatre...
Angela D., 3rd grade teacher

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