The Act of Teaching: Pt. 1: Theater Techniques for Classrooms and Presentations
Teachers can convey their ideas more powerfully if they take time to improve their presentation skills. The Act of Teaching : Nancy Houfek, Head of Voice and Speech for the American Repertory Theatre at Harvard University, leads a workshop that stresses the importance of communication with the whole self in order to reach an audience. Throughout the workshop, she introduces participants to the same techniques that actors use to prepare and deliver a performance, including warm-ups, relaxation, strengthening, and visualizing exercises. In Part I, Theater Techniques for Classroom and Presentation, Houfek focuses on overcoming stage fright, knowing your objectives, and 'landing your message'. In part II, Physical and Vocal Exercises , she leads teachers through 20 minutes of exercises specifically designed to prepare them for the physical challenges of the classroom, beginning with 'Waking Up the Body', and moving to vocal warm-ups that treat the voice as an instrument requiring care. Together, these techniques and exercises present a new set of resources that greatly broaden the avenues we customarily use in communicating with colleagues and students. An illustrated guide to exercises is included as a PDF.