A life skill like listening – demonstrated with a large dose of laughter – is just one way Justin Howard and Trey Stone connect with students.
The Black Box Improv Theater performers recently made a visit to Chaminade Julienne as part of the Muse Machine In-School Performance Series. The presentation/performance emphasized active listening, teamwork, creativity and confidence building through the use of improv and music. Drama teacher Caitlin Bennett, a regular performer at the Black Box Improv Theater, even got in on the act as did a few CJ students who volunteered to be part of the interactive demonstrations.
While Howard and Stone are regulars at area schools, as they will visit 34 schools this fall alone, their presentation can be geared toward the corporate world as well as the classroom.
“Improv is used in a lot of businesses for training,” Howard said. “It’s a way to learn that’s very engaging.”
“It’s all about collaboration,” Stone added. “It’s about working well together.”
Demonstrating the value of agreement when working in groups, showing the importance of listening, and helping students overcome anxiety were a few of the topics Howard and Stone addressed in what they call the “Madness Behind the Method.”
“We show how it relates to school and life,” Howard said.
The lessons learned aren’t limited to students – they are skills for a lifetime.
“As we become adults, there are more responsibilities all the time and that can make listening and communicating effectively even more difficult,” Stone said. “What we do here is applicable to everybody.”
CJ recently renewed its membership with the Muse Machine. The Black Box Improv Theater performers were the first of four in-school artists who will perform on campus during the 2016-17 school year.
Event: August 31, 2016