DTA | Tech for Non-Techies: Teaching Technical Theatre in Your Drama Classroom
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Tech for Non-Techies: Teaching Technical Theatre in Your Drama Classroom

Created by Josh Hatt

In this course, instructor Joshua Hatt shows you how to unpack your drama standards, articulate what you want your students to know and be able to do. The material explores how to incorporate lights, sound, makeup, staging, and costuming into your drama class at any grade level regardless of your school resources or unit structure. Bells and whistles? Awesome! Barely a classroom? We’ve still got you covered.

This 9 lesson series works from the basics and standards, though lighting, sound, costuming, staging, and makeup design, and culminates with a final project including rubrics, resources, and handouts.

A wise theatre technician once said: “the theatre mirrors life but technical theatre teachers us how to live.” Try to keep that statement in mind as you work through this course and see if we can make you a believer in all things technical theatre.

10 Modules
3 hours, 23 minutes
7 Credit Hours

Course Outline

Lesson 0: Introduction 12:07 FREE PREVIEW
Lesson 0 introduces the instructor and lays out the outline for the series of lessons.
Lesson 1: Getting Down to Basics 12:07 FREE PREVIEW
Be introduced to how tech theatre can transform your drama program and student buy-in. Technical theatre can cover mood, audience awareness, use of color, appreciation of the bigger picture, working as an ensemble.
Lesson 2: Unpacking the Drama Standard 13:53
Lesson 2 will walk you through unpacking your drama standard through the lens of technical theatre and allow you to articulate exactly what it is you want your students to know, how you’re going to get them there, and what you need to do in order to be successful.
Lesson 3: Light the Lights! 21:50
Whether you have the bells or whistles or absolutely nothing and a tiny budget, you will leave this lesson with resources to use tomorrow and inspiration of how to train your students to be problem solvers while considering how lights can affect mood, tension, and set the tone for a professional theatrical experience.
Lesson 4: What's That Sound? 27:40
This lesson will explore how music can affect scene work and how it can contribute to an effective scene while paying particular attention to the overall audience experience.
Lesson 5: To Costume or Not to Costume 25:24
This lesson will take students through the design process of planning, executing, and evaluating the effectiveness of work created in costuming.
Lesson 6: Set the Stage 24:07
This lesson will cover how to teach students to plan, design, plot, and execute a staging plan.
Lesson 7: Free Play Makeup Design 39:45
This lesson will teach you do how to get students to plan, design, plot, and execute a makeup design plan.
Lesson 8: Putting it All Together 20:12
This lesson will walk you through the PBL design process and contains rubrics, resources, and handouts for a final project.
Lesson 9: Recap 6:50
This final lesson aims to answer any remaining questions on how to best approach technical theatre and make it fit your educational context.

Standards Addressed

National Core Arts Standards

Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work - Grade 6

TH:Cr1.1.6.b - Identify solutions to design challenges in a drama/theatre work.

Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work - Grade 7

TH:Cr1.1.7.b - Explain and present solutions to design challenges in a drama/ theatre work.

Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work - High School Proficient

TH:Cr1.1.HSI.b - Explore the impact of technology on design choices in a drama/theatre work.

Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work - High School Accomplished

TH:Cr1.1.HSII.b - Understand and apply technology to design solutions for a drama/theatre work.

Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade 6

TH:Pr5.1.6.b - Articulate how technical elements are integrated into a drama/ theatre work.

Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade 7

TH:Pr5.1.7.b - Choose a variety of technical elements that can be applied to a design in a drama/theatre work.

Organize and develop artistic ideas and work - Grade HS Accomplished

TH:Cr2.1.HSII.b - Cooperate as a creative team to make interpretive choices for a drama/theatre work.

Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade HS Accomplished

TH:Pr5.1.HSII.b - Apply technical elements and research to create a design that communicates the concept of a drama/theatre production.

Refine new work through play, drama processes and theatre experiences using critical analysis and experimentation - Grade HS Proficient

TH:Cr3.1.HSI.c - Refine technical design choices to support the story and emotional impact of a devised or scripted drama/ theatre work.

Common Core

California VAPA Standards (2019)

6.TH:Cr1 Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work

6.TH:Cr1.c - Identify solutions to design challenges in a drama/theatre work.

7.TH:Cr1 Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work

7.TH:Cr1.c - Explain and present solutions to design challenges in a drama/ theatre work.

6.TH:Pr5 Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation.

6.TH:Pr5.b - Articulate how technical theatre elements are integrated into a drama/ theatre work.

Georgia Performance Standards 2017 - Theatre Arts

Tennessee Theatre Curriculum Standards

Tennessee Theatre standards (2018) standards were built using the framework of the NCAS which is built on four key domains: Creating, Performing/Presenting/Producing, Connecting, and Responding. Within each of these domains are foundations and standards to support the development of curriculum, programs, and learning.
(source: Tennessee Department of Education, Tennessee Academic Standards for Fine Arts, Summer 2018)

Please refer to National Core Arts Standards to determine the standard that best suits your needs.

Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Theatre Arts

MS 117.211 LI - Creative Expression: production

C.3.B - create suitable environments for dramatizations.

Alberta, Canada

British Columbia (2018)

GRADE 10 - DRAMA - Reason and reflect

Describe, analyze, and respond using drama-specific language

GRADE 10 - DRAMA - Connect and expand

Demonstrate respect for self, others, and the audience

GRADE 11 - DRAMA - Connect and expand

Demonstrate awareness of self, others, and audience

GRADE 12 - DRAMA - Connect and expand

Demonstrate respect for self, others, and audience

Ontario, Canada

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