New Britain Youth Theater is offering a one-time arts in education class in connection with a graduating senior from R.J. Kinsella Magnet School of Performing Arts. The class will show students ages 9 to 12 how using theater in the classroom can improve their understanding of classroom subjects—and their grades!
Integrating theater into education means taking theatrical experiences and bringing them into the classroom for a more interesting learning experience. This class is for students who may struggle with sitting all day at a desk and then being tested on things that they’ve supposedly learned from a book. Some children just don’t obtain information best in this way—they learn by standing, moving, and engaging in fun (yet still educational) activities. The class will focus on fourth and fifth-grade lessons in science and history, but the methods learned can be transferred to any subject and grade level.
Classroom experiences over the past few years have proven the value of integrating arts in education. In one school district, “thousands of schoolchildren showed an ‘astonishing’ jump in test scores after their teachers used the arts in reading lessons. In a pilot program involving 3,000 third- and fourth-graders, test scores improved at triple the rate of similar students using the standard curricula.”*
Day and time: Saturdays, 1:00 – 2:30 pm
Duration and dates: Six weeks (April 8, 22, 29, May 6, 13, 20)
Location: NBYT at the Berlin YMCA, 362 Main Street, Berlin
Cost: $15 participation fee
The class will be led by Jasmine Fedele, a seven-year participant in NBYT programs as both an actor and backstage volunteer, and will be supervised by Executive and Artistic Director Darren Farrington.
* “Arts education program boosts reading scores.” The San Diego Union-Tribune, February 9, 2012.