Applied Theatre has many uses in educational settings. It can be a route to learning about nearly any subject. As teaching artists, we integrate the creative process into the classroom and the community by providing engaging, creative, and developmentally appropriate learning experiences. Influenced by Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed, we use methods that support development of learning communities that take responsibility for their own learning processes.
In educational settings, applied theatre processes work to engage students and teachers in meaningful dialogue, stimulate the development of communities in which students can be both cognitively and affectively committed to learning, and provide engaging, interactive processes that stimulate and reshape the learning process.
As teaching artists we collaborate with all groups involved in the learning process. Theatre of the Oppressed and The Virtues Project offer creative tools to engage students in participatory action research (PAR), an approach to learning and discovery that emphasizes participation and action. Together we seek to explore the world using theatre techniques to ask questions, test answers, and create paths to understanding and change.
We offer trainings for teachers and teaching artists as well as long or short-term residencies in classrooms or in community settings and can assist in program development and curricular planning. Students have shared their discoveries in many ways including Forum plays, videos, and graphic story books.