Family Performance Guides & Activities

Ovations Offstage: Family Performance Guides & Activities

Family performances span from theater to music to dance to spectacle and offer opportunities to enjoy the performing arts as a family. Audience Guides give families and young people an opportunity to explore the performances in more depth, including behind-the-scenes information and activities.

Arts Integration at Home

When the pandemic hit, students found themselves at home, and caregivers were balancing work and school, Ovations Offstage shared a few simple, creative, educational, and arts-based ways to spice up distance learning. These activities remain perfect for a too hot afternoon, a rainy day or a snowstorm. O2 opportunities for performing arts education in Maine include:

Browse our library of printer friendly activities.

Freeze Dance

Our last activity is a way to celebrate the school year that is wrapping up. While it might not feel like a celebratory time, dancing is important for a few reasons. As an art form, it has been a form of resistance for many oppressed cultures. Dance also asks us to be present in our body – learning how it moves and how we can be more comfortable in it.

ALPHABET RELAY

The end of the school year is a time for reflecting. Today’s activity, Alphabet Relay, is an energetic way for kids to reflect on this unique school year – from what was challenging to how much they’ve learned and discovered.

TWO BY THREE BY BRADFORD

As the school year winds down, we’ve got a few more activities to bring some joy and movement to your distance learning. Two by Three by Bradford allows students to practice focus, listening, and awareness starting with the simple act of counting to three.

CROSS THE ROOM IF…

Cross the Room If… is a tried and true warm-up game typically used as a way to get to know new people. But for classroom and distance learning, it is a great way to share opinions and thoughts and spark deeper discussion.

THIS SETTING NEEDS…

This Setting Needs, combines imagination, observation, and detail-oriented thinking to challenge kids to create a 3-D, one-of-a-kind environment.

OBJECT METAPHOR

Object Metaphor, invites students to make comparisons between a random object and another topic. Whether the topic is silly or serious, students will practice flexible and metaphorical thinking. How are you like a potato masher?

WHEN I SAY ONE

“When I Say One” asks you to get up, move, and be in the moment. Actors use this activity as a warm up for their bodies, voices, and minds. Kick start your week with it – and keep playing it all week long.

RECIPE FOR ME

Recipe for Me is a fun, thoughtful, and creative way to share who you are. This activity is shared in two parts. Part One is the brainstorm and writing half and Part Two is the movement and performance half.

STOP AND GO AND JUMP

Stop! Go! Jump! This is a great activity that gets you up, moving, and thinking quick. Play it before distance learning to gather energy and focus. Play it when everyone is done for the day and needs to release some energy. Feel free to create your own additional directions.

EXCURSIONS

Excursions invites kids (and adults) to practice the skills of observation and presence, and most importantly creativity through spontaneity.

MIRROR

Mirror is a simple and low-risk activity that invites students to slow down. This activity allows participants to practice focus, responsibility and trust.

HOT SEATING

An activity that gets kids acting! This activity allows them to a) think from different perspectives and b) share their knowledge in a creative way. It is essentially an interview with a character, a famous person, or anyone else who the student might want to pretend to be.

PEOPLE TO PEOPLE

An activity that gets kids up on their feet and into their bodies. This activity allows them to a) move their bodies in improvisational ways and b) practice in the moment problem-solving.

SENTENCE-AT-A-TIME STORY

A classic improvisation game that allows kids to a) practice their creativity and b) work on sequencing, word choice, and descriptive details.

THIS IS NOT A...

This activity is a playful theatre activity that gets you a) using your imagination and b) showing/telling descriptive details.

NARRATIVE PANTOMIME

Narrative Pantomime is an active way for students to a) retell a story and b) draw out action, emotion, and sensory details. It’s a great way to extend the story hour, especially for kids who can’t read yet.

ROLE ON THE WALL

Role on the Wall is a fun way to help kids share a) what they know about a character/person and b) what ways the character is influenced by external forces.

EVERYBODY DO!

This activity combines theater with the skill of reviewing what you already know. Everybody Do! is a great way to help kids a) show their understanding of knowledge and b) reinforce that understanding. It’s also fun to play as a break in the day.

SCULPTOR & CLAY

Creating statues or sculptures of vocabulary is a great way to help kids a) remember the word and b) reinforce the definition

Enjoy these at-home, kid-driven theater activities to activate your reading of the books selected for the Beautiful Blackbird Children’s Book Festival, presented by our friends at Indigo Arts Alliance! These activities are included in packages of free books being given to students throughout our community.

CREATE A PLAY

A play is a performance of a story told by people pretending to be different characters. They are called actors. The story is told through the actors talking to each other. This form of speaking is called dialogue. A play often takes place on a stage but it can occur anywhere!

EVERYBODY DO!

Everybody Do! is a game where one person calls out an action, and everyone does it together. It’s a celebration of your own way of moving and pretending.

Try playing Everybody Do! after you read Wherever I Go by Mary Wagley Copp and illustrated by Munir D. Mohammed.

RECIPE FOR ME

Being the true you is the most important thing you can be!

A Recipe for Me is a poetic and theatrical way to share who you are and what you are made of through words and movement.