How to become "self-smart," "people-smart," and "word-smart"
We are strong proponents of the Multiple Intelligences theory, developed by Harvard professor Howard Gardner, and apply them across our programs. According to Gardner's widely-accepted research, humans have not one but 8 (and possibly 9) different intelligences, all of which can be developed over the course of a lifetime. Actors may need to tap into the full range of Multiple Intelligences, depending on storyline and stage requirements. But at their very core, Acting Classes develop the students' "self-smart" (intrapersonal), "people-smart" (interpersonal), and "word-smart" (linguistic) abilities:
- "Self-smart": when we nourish students' self-smart intelligence, they discover what feelings are, and how to identify feelings within themselves. Our Acting Classes provide positive reinforcement of students' emotions, and strongly encourage individuality. As students become more aware of their own feelings, they also develop the ability to empathize with others.
- "People-smart": Our Acting Classes build social skills and break down social inhibitions, as they encourage students to interact with each other though role play. Focusing on development of the students' people-smart intelligence, our Acting program also teaches students the importance of working as a team. Acting students naturally acquire collaboration skills as well as the ability to obey rules and follow direction.
- "Word-smart": Acting is about communication. Students in the program develop the art and all-important life skill of expressing themselves and sharing their thoughts and feelings with others. As part of the learning experience, students explore forms of verbal and non-verbal communication (body language). Well developed communication skills not only inspire intellectual curiosity but also provide the tools for non-violent conflict resolution.
How does all this happen? Storylines and Role Play
Acting students absorb many of the wonderful benefits of drama classes through storylines and role play. Role playing of characters expands the mind and improves students' ability to think on their feet. It inspires creativity and builds problem-solving skills. Especially with younger students, story lines and character play also lend themselves to moral lessons, where students learn right from wrong and experience the concepts of responsibility and accountability. Deeply immersed in role play and storylines, Acting students often see significantly improved attention span within only a few weeks!
Becoming a Leader, and Changing the Future
Students dedicated to the art of Acting and practicing it consistently develop certain skills, behaviors, and qualities of effective leaders. These include excellent communication skills, public speaking skills, personal confidence, and awareness of one's own feelings and those of others. The experience of theatre classes can be truly transformative when students young and not-so-young begin to discover and nurture the leader within themselves. This awesome personal growth process changes the way students think about themselves and their future!