Educators, Administrators and School/Educational Organizations Personnel Team & Skill Building with Applied Improv
Listening is an important part of being an educator in any context. It is a way of “looking for the truth and the interesting things in what students are saying and not just trying to set them up to say the things you want them to say.”
Applied improv for educators/administrators/school personnel build teamwork, listening skills, and curious thinking. All skills that are important to educators as well.
What is really cool about appliced improv is it’s a way to physically and emotionally experience concepts in a safe space. A space that removes expectations of judgment and builds a foundation for people to support one another in achieving a goal.
You have this visceral, physical reaction to it — in a room, playing a game, rather than just hearing somebody say ‘you should make more mistakes’ or ‘this is why failure is good. There is something experiential but safe about applied improv that allows you to play around with and internalize these larger concepts.
Amongst many fun and highly interactive activities, participants introduce themselves verbally, gesture physically, move often in an open space, ask for consent before touching others, speak in pairs or small groups, and orient themselves in circles or front-facing arrangements. Participants turn to their partner(s) and say “thank you” after each activity ends and before forming new groups. Thank you is important because it gets us out of our head and reminds us of the value of people around us.
Participants celebrate mistakes by raising their hands and exclaiming, “woo-hoo!” As time passes, participants in applied improve grow more comfortable with the activities and with one another, and eventually start passing an invisible ball while making different made-up sounds.
These improv skills are especially relevant to educators: how to be present and fully listen, how to be spontaneous and celebrate failure, and how to share control.”
At the end of the workshop, participants gather in a circle and reflect on their experiences as a group, with mentions of expanding their comfort zones, learning the value of being a little goofy, and some wondering — can we create a new extracurricular applied improv club?