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Theater in School

Children who perform in theatre have an advantage over their peers, especially when it comes to linguistic intelligence. The use of theatre in school also increases verbal memory, the children's attention span and their self-esteem.

"I love doing theatre. It is so much more realistic than life." (Oscar Wilde)

Doing theatre with your students may sound like a big challenge, but take heart - your role as a director is not that different from your role as a teacher!

As in everything you do with your students, you are the educator and know the children best, both as a teacher and as a theatre director.

Acting should be fun! There is no right or wrong here, acting is a form of artistic expression.

However, there are some aspects that you as a teacher need to consider when rehearsing roles if you want to help students reach their full potential.

Acting, like any other form of art, is a craft that can be practised and is made up of voice, body , expression and energy. The main problems are often that children deliver their lines too slurred, too softly or too expressionless. There are many exercises that can help to solve these problems.

Information on choosing theatre scenes

When you choose a play or a scene, the first step is that you really like it, that you love it, that you are fascinated by it. The second step is to decide if it is good for the students' personal development (body, mind and soul).

If you think it is too difficult, you always have the option to simplify it. (simpler words, find easier versions, shorten the piece....)

If the students are captivated by the story, that's a green light for you. To find out if it really is the right play for them, you can give them three (three is often a good number) stories of plays to choose from and they can vote for the one they like best.

Every teacher is in a different situation:

  • How old are the students?

  • How much time do they have?

  • What is their level of attention, their fluency?

  • Do you play theatre with them regularly?

Attention level, language competence can be trained.

Our play selection

For the AWAKE project we have chosen Nestroy's "The Talisman", Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" and Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" because there is something for every age group and the scenes are very complex. Years of theatre experience with children have shown that these scenes are always well received and are both understandable and a playful challenge if the children are well accompanied and prepared.

Flora and Plutzerkern from "Talisman".

  • the scene is very funny

  • spontaneity can be practised here

  • physical presence

  • very simple and funny scene and also easy to understand for smaller children.

Titus and Salome from "Talisman

  • a simple, clear scene in which two characters are well drawn

  • this is a so-called introduction scene, i.e. the characters are introduced.

  • Love scene from "A Midsummer Night's Dream

  • an emotionally strong, tragic love scene

  • intense emotional experience that has to be acted out, and this increases the children's perceptual capacity.

Workmen's scene from "A Midsummer Night's Dream

  • very clearly different characters

  • many roles, so it needs a lot of energy and close listening

  • Listening, interacting and reacting are trained.

Fight scene from Romeo and Juliet

  • a very big challenge

  • Especially young aggressive people will find this scene very interesting, maybe find themselves in the characters and maybe even understand them.

  • Aggression can be reduced through theatre, so this scene is especially interesting for hot-tempered young men.


  • comedies recommended for young people under 12.

  • The older ones get infected by love stories. Romeo and Juliet is recommended for grades 9 and up.

  • Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream can be performed by all ages (at least a few simplified scenes).

You know your class and your pupils best and are the only ones who can judge what you can expect the children to do.

Videos on YouTube in German

Introduction into playing Theatre

This video shows the following content from the project:

Tips from the director

Interview with children who play theatre

Videos on YouTube in Romanian

Tips from the director

Interview with children who play theatre

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