Improvisation exercises are key at my son’s after school art classes. The art instructor explained that these exercises help kids loosen up to improve their confidence and concentration. It can also provide a way to make kids laugh and make friends, breaking the initial ice.
The art instructor utilized a couple of exercises to help the kids unleash their creativity.
In the first exercise, she asked them to come up with a noun and a verb ending in ing, like ‘mime falling’. These two words are then acted out by the kids together. In more advanced improvisation settings kids are asked to individually interpret the action of the words but when not when it’s a beginner group. During this exercise the kids are encouraged to be as silly as they can to keep it all fun and light.
Another exercise is freeze tag. Two kids act out a scene created by the group. The initial scene can be started with a noun and a verb, or with a situation created completely by the kids.One child starts the action, and then freezes when the second player claps to take over the action. The second player picks up acting where the first child dropped it off. As the scene goes on more kids take over until the whole group has joined in. The scene can change and evolve with each new player.
At the end of the exercises, kids are most often laughing and enjoying themselves, with no stress and ready to start creating.
For more on the positive benefits of improvisational exercises and games, click here (http://www.kidsenabled.org/articles/index.php/201001/all-the-worlds-a-stage-the-benefits-of-drama/).
Afterschool Activities and Free Resources from SmartTutor
Article By Nuria Almeida
Photo By bonnerlibrary