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Takin’ It to the Schools offers a variety of in-school modular classes designed to enhance your existing curriculum with experiential learning. Our team of  talented instructors will come to your school to lead your class in one or more of the following activities. The program is entirely modular and you can pick from any of the instructional and fun activities listed below to create the right experience for your students.

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Contact Education Director Melissa Jones to schedule your in-class experience.

Available Classes

Meet the Bard

Kick back with Shakespeare and get to know who he is, where he came from, and why, exactly, we think he’s so cool. Topics covered include a brief history of Shakespeare and his use of language (including the basics of scansion and meter), how his works relate to modern day, and more. If there’s a specific play you’d like us to focus on, just let us know!

Recommended for grades 9-12. Requires an open, indoor space (a classroom, a cafeteria or gym, etc.). Students should be prepared for some movement.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 3.3, 4.1

$175.00 per hour of instruction


Getting into the Act

Preparing for a performance? Rehearsing a run-through? Let one of our seasoned directors polish your performers to perfection so they can put their best foot forward. Our instructor will work directly with students to provide valuable scene coaching and acting tips, plus practice critical performance skills like enunciation and diction, pacing, volume, and on-stage body awareness.

Recommended for grades 3-12. Requires an open, indoor space (a classroom, a cafeteria or gym, etc.). Students should be prepared for some movement.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.2

$175.00 per hour of instruction


Improvisation: Saying “Yes!” to Making Things Up

Forget the lines – this class is all about thinking fast on your feet! With exercises, games, and activities galore, this workshop is perfect for that class with energy to spare. You know the one we’re talking about. The ability to improvise is a significant tool in any actor’s skills tool belt, and saying “Yes!” to new ideas is one of the fundamental cornerstones of good improvisation. Students will learn the essential concepts of improvisation and how to say “Yes!” with the best of them.

Recommended for grades 3-12. Requires an open, indoor space (your classroom, an unused cafeteria or gym, etc.). Students should be prepared for some movement.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 2.1, 2.2

$175.00 per hour of instruction


Stage Makeup

Because making-up’s NOT hard to do! Let us show your students how to transform themselves with a little bit of makeup and a whole lot of elbow grease. This demonstration-based workshop shows your students how to apply basic stage makeup, age, or exaggerated character looks. If your students are already familiar with those applications, the workshop can be tailored to demonstrate any one of the following instead:

• Animal makeup

• Fantasy makeup

• Special effects

• Facial hair application

Please specify the demonstration topic at time of registration.

If you would like to include a hands-on component so students can practice application on themselves under an instructor’s guidance, please book an additional 30 minutes to this workshop, for a total of 90 minutes for demonstration and hands-on student practice. Makeup for student application during the hands-on portion is not provided.

Recommended for grades 9-12. Requires an indoor space (a classroom, an unused cafeteria or gym, etc.) with tables and chairs. If booking an additional 30 minutes for hands-on instruction, please ensure the room has adequate mirrors and makeup supplies for student use.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 2.3, 3.1, 3.2, 4.1, 4.2

$175.00 per hour of instruction. Additional materials fee of $75 may apply, based on topic selected.

Unarmed Stage Combat

Pow! Bam! Oomph! Work off some steam with a variety of slaps, kicks, grabs, punches, pulls, pushes, and more with this unarmed stage combat class. Perform effective and believable unarmed stage combat with an emphasis on safety, while learning what it takes to make the conflict convincing to the audience. This is a very hands-on (and legs-on, arms-on, feet-on!) workshop, so students must be dressed for movement.

Recommended for grades 5-12. Requires a large open space with a flat, even surface (a field of grass outdoors, a cafeteria or gym, etc.) in which students can move freely. Students should be prepared for activity and movement, wearing closed-toe shoes.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 2.1, 4.2

$200.00 per hour of instruction

Costuming Demonstration

Project Runway, here we come! Students will sneak a peek behind the scenes of the costume design process, and will even get to create designs for some of Shakespeare’s most beloved characters. This workshop is demonstration-based, showcasing examples of costumes from past SSTC shows, and examining how a costume designer looks at a show and what tools are used during the design process. Students will then create costume renderings to design characters from one of Shakespeare’s plays. If there’s a specific play you’d like us to focus on, just let us know!

Recommended for grades 9-12. Requires an indoor space (a classroom, an unused cafeteria or gym, etc.) with tables and chairs.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 2.3, 3.1, 3.2, 4.1, 4.2

$175.00 per hour of instruction

Workshops

Can’t get enough of our workshops? The more the merrier! Any of our workshop programming can be expanded and/or combined into a series of classes, bringing hours of Silicon Valley Shakespeare instruction into your classroom. Because every classroom’s needs are different, we tailor the structure of our workshop series to your needs, your schedule, and your school. Please contact us to find out how a workshop series can fit into your classroom!

Recommended for grades 3-12. Requirements vary based on topic covered.

Recommended for grades 9-12. Requires an open, indoor space (a classroom, a cafeteria or gym, etc.). Students should be prepared for some movement.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 3.3, 4.1

$175.00 per hour of instruction


Halloween / Dia de los Muertos

Bring zombies to life with our special Stage Makeup workshop! With Halloween just around the corner, now’s the time to book a Stage Makeup workshop and transform your students into a horde of ghouls, ghosts, and goblins galore. One of our experienced instructors will come to your classroom and teach your students the basics of applying exaggerated character looks. You supply the makeup; we supply the fun!

If makeup’s not your thing, try Costuming for your future Project Runway stars, Improvisation for your April Fool’s tricksters, and Unarmed Stage Combat for those high-energy days before a holiday break. Mix and match throughout the year for an experience tailor made to your students and your schedule!

If you would like to include a hands-on component so students can practice application on themselves under an instructor’s guidance, please book an additional 30 minutes to this workshop, for a total of 90 minutes for demonstration and hands-on student practice. Makeup for student application during the hands-on portion is not provided by Silicon Valley Shakespeare.

Recommended for grades 9-12. Requires an indoor space (a classroom, an unused cafeteria or gym, etc.) with tables and chairs. If booking an additional 30 minutes for hands-on instruction, please ensure the room has adequate mirrors and makeup supplies for student use.

Addresses California State Standards: 1.1, 2.3, 3.1, 3.2, 4.1, 4.2

$175.00 per hour of instruction. Additional 30 minutes is $75.00.

Testimonials

“Drew was awesome! I really enjoyed his enthusiasm and ability to relate to the students. He kept them engaged and the things he taught, the students are practicing for their performance! They keep saying, “No, it’s supposed to be ‘Duth’ not ‘Doth’” or things like that and I know it comes from his workshop.”

— D.J / Drama Teacher, Cupertino Middle School



“We have done two 3-hour workshops in the past and that seems to be the optimal time to whip us in shape for our Romeo and Juliet production! It’s amazing how your instructor, Tom, keeps them engaged and occupied and learning for that long, but he does! He was able to get this year’s somewhat subdued class giggling and coming out of their shells!”

— Drama Instructor, French-American School of Silicon Valley



“Your instructors did an amazing job. I was very impressed by the material and how well it was presented. All the students enjoyed the experience and had nothing but positive comments about the instructors and the experience as a whole. Thank you so much!”

— Mrs. Kelsey / Canyon Heights Academy

Our Education Director, Melissa Jones

Melissa received a B.A. in Theatre from SJSU, with emphases in acting, makeup design, and children’s theatre, and has also trained with ComedySportz in improvisation and with American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) in mime and commedia dell’arte. She has been a theatre educator for over 12 years, and has taught, directed, and developed theatre curriculum for numerous schools and organizations, including Starting Arts, Children’s Discovery Museum, The Tech Museum, and Los Gatos-Saratoga Recreation. Melissa also freelances as a makeup-artist and designer, regularly teaching workshops on application. In addition to Shady Shakespeare, companies she has worked with include Pixar Animation Studios, Disney Channel UK, Opera San Jose, and West Bay Opera. She is a passionate advocate of the benefits of arts engagement, with its ability to foster personal growth, build communities and cultural awareness, and encourage innovation and out-of-the-box thinking, for students of all ages and at all levels of participation.