Mr. Aaron Taylor IB Theatre – Fall 2009 Aaron_Taylor@mcpsmd.org IB Theatre Syllabus Mr. Aaron Taylor Office: Room E031 Office Hours: M-F Before School and at Lunch in E031 Overview Theatre is a composite art that is forever evolving in new forms. It nourishes, sustains and extends the human spirit. It is a means of exploring society and relationships within it. Through it, there may emerge possibilities for individual and communal understanding. The theatre course emphasizes the importance of working individually and as a member of an ensemble. Students are encouraged to develop the organizational and technical skills needed to express themselves creatively in theatre. A further challenge for students following this course is for them to become aware of their own perspectives and biases and to learn to respect those of others. This requires a willingness to understand alternative views, to respect and appreciate cultural diversity, and to see the varied role that theatre plays in reflecting these. As a result, the theatre course can become a way for students to celebrate the international and intercultural dynamic that inspires and sustains some forms of contemporary theatre, while appreciating the specifically local origins that have always given rise to performance, and which, in many parts of the world, still do. Mr. Taylor’s Classroom Goals Ensure a healthy, cooperative learning environment for all students in which students are able to speak their minds, question, take risks, and give each other respect during all classroom exercises. Expose students to as many different types of theatre as possible through reading, writing, listening, and viewing. Deepen each student’s appreciation for all forms of theatre and all aspects of the process. Please take a moment to reread the first goal that I have for this course: Provide a healthy, cooperative learning environment for all students in which students feel comfortable speaking their minds, questioning, taking risks, and giving each other respect during all classroom exercises. In order to uphold this standard, students will need to meet various behavior expectations. The expectations I have for a healthy, cooperative learning environment where all students are respected are as follows: 1. By the time the first bell rings, you should be ready to work. You should be seated before the bell rings. All electronics should be put away before entering the classroom. 2. Ask for a pass at an appropriate time. To me, an inappropriate time is when someone is speaking in front of the class and in the first or last ten minutes of class. 3. You are not dismissed from class until I dismiss you. Thus, the bell does not dismiss you. 4. Do not judge or criticize the person, only the act. Students that do not meet these expectations or other expectations set forth by MCPS policy will receive disciplinary action, either in the form of lunch detention or an administrative referral. Supplies Needed for Class A spiral notebook. A folder with pockets. Writing utensils. Mr. Aaron Taylor IB Theatre – Fall 2009 Aaron_Taylor@mcpsmd.org Course Outline Unit One: Design and Playwriting (First Quarter) Texts: Selected readings from Technical Theater for Nontechnical People by Drew Campbell Selected readings from Theatrical Design and Production by J. Michael Gillette Selected readings from Design and Drawing for the Theatre by Lynn Pecktal Still Life with Iris by Steven Dietz Selected readings from The Playwright’s Guidebook by Stuart Spencer Common Tasks: Presentation on one form of theatrical design. Research and design of one form of theatrical design (scenic, costume, sound, lights, effects, properties) Writing of an original ten-minute play. Unit Two: Theatrical Research and Pitching a Performance (Second Quarter) Texts: Excerpts from History of the Theatre by Oscar Brockett and Franklin Hildy Various stimuli for the basis of a performance proposal, ranging from music to poetry to visual art and more Common Tasks: Presentation on a theorist or practitioner or genre of theatre The IB Research Investigation Several Practical Performance Proposals Course-long Common Tasks: 5 hours of participation in the school production each quarter. The journal Further explanation of the Common Tasks will follow as assignments are given. Success in these Common Tasks is predicated on the completion of preparatory homework and class work assignments. These may include readings, discussions, journals, individual or group projects, performances, or any other variety of assignments. Grading and Assignments Your grade will be based on an assessment of the work that you complete inside and outside of class. You may be reassessed on at least one assignment. In order for you to have an assignment reassessed, you must meet the following criteria: 1) The original assignment must be turned in before the deadline, 2) You must discuss your intended revision with me and we will determine a due date, 3) You must work one-on-one with me, with one of our composition assistants, or with someone at TAP to actively discuss and revise the paper, and 4) You must attach your original paper to the back of the revision. No reassessment of writing assignments will be allowed unless those criteria have been met. The grade a student receives on a reassessed assignment, whether higher or lower, will replace the original grade. You may not reassess final measures of learning. Also, only assignments that receive a C or lower can be reassessed. Mr. Aaron Taylor IB Theatre – Fall 2009 Aaron_Taylor@mcpsmd.org Please refer to the MCPS Grading and Reporting Policy featured on the B-CC web page for more specifics. No one grade will exceed 25% of the total grade for the marking period. Your grade for each quarter will be determined based upon the total number of points earned for all assignments divided by the total number of available points. Grades will be weighted approximately as follows: Essays and Assessments 40% Performances/Presentations 25% Journal and Quarterly Reflection 25% School Production Participation 10% All students are expected to complete all assignments on time and to demonstrate thought and attention in their completion. Due dates will be set for all assignments. Subsequent final deadlines will also be set. In many cases, both the due date and the deadline will be the same date. Assignments received after the final deadline will receive no credit. All assignments handed in after the due date but before the deadline will receive the 10% late penalty. No assignments will be accepted via e-mail. If a student receives a grade that she/he feel does NOT reflect their work, she/he must wait 24 hours before talking to Mr. Taylor about the grade. After 24 hours, she/he can make an appointment to discuss the grade with Mr. Taylor during office hours. Mr. Taylor will not discuss grades during class time or during the five minutes between classes. If you are absent, please check Edline first before asking me for assignments. I post all class work, assignments, projects, and miscellaneous work on my Edline webpage and in the class binder. A technology failure is not an excuse for a late assignment. The media center and cyber café are open before school and at lunch for your technological necessities. Also, public libraries and the local FedEx Kinkos are all great places to use the computer. All major assignments will only be accepted if they are typed according to the format standards outlined in class and on my Edline page. If the assignment does not meet format standards, I will simply return it to you without grading it. Also, if there are enough grammar/convention errors to hinder the meaning of the assignment, I will deduct 10% off the final grade. This class will require you to write about numerous topics, including personal anecdotes and experiences. While I do not wish to stifle creativity or reflection, please be aware that anything you write can be shared with a guidance counselor or administrator. If you write anything that leads me to believe that you are harming yourself or another or that you are being harmed, I will have to contact the proper authorities At the Core The theatre core syllabus at HL and SL consists of three interrelated areas. Students are required to explore these three areas from the perspective of dramaturg, director, performer, group ensemble, production team and spectator. Theatre in the making The focus of theatre in the making is on the process of theatre making rather than the presentation of theatre. It encompasses the acquisition and development of all skills required to create, present and observe theatre. It is exploratory in nature. Theatre in performance The focus of theatre in performance is on the application of skills developed in theatre in the making. This involves students in various aspects of presenting theatre, where their practical skills can be applied in different roles (as performers and as part of the production team), while also building upon the knowledge they have acquired in other areas. Mr. Aaron Taylor IB Theatre – Fall 2009 Aaron_Taylor@mcpsmd.org Theatre in the world The focus of theatre in the world is on a practical and theoretical exploration of a range of theatre traditions and cultural practices around the world. It allows students to explore the origins and traditions of a variety of theatre conventions and practices from diverse cultural and historical contexts. IB Theatre Aims The aims of the theatre course at HL and SL are to enable students to: experience and participate in a wide and varied range of theatre activities and develop proficiency in more than one area of theatre technique become familiar with forms of theatre from their own and different cultures explore different theatre traditions in their historical contexts develop academic skills appropriate for the study and understanding of theatre become reflective and critical practitioners in theatre develop the confidence to explore, to experiment and to work individually and collaboratively on innovative projects, which should involve challenging established notions and conventions of theatre understand the dynamic, holistic and evolving nature of theatre and the interdependencies of all aspects of this art form. IB Theatre Objectives Having followed the theatre course at HL or SL, students will be expected to: demonstrate a theoretical and practical knowledge of theatrical traditions from more than one culture demonstrate an understanding of production elements and theatre practices evaluate critically a range of diverse performances engage practically in creating and presenting performances, which will include a basic level of technical proficiency reflect on their own development in theatre through continual self-evaluation and recording acquire appropriate research skills and apply them demonstrate an ability to interpret playtexts and other types of performance texts analytically and imaginatively demonstrate initiative and perseverance in both individual and group projects. In addition, students at HL will be expected to: evaluate the relevance of selected research sources to personal practice demonstrate an understanding of the complex processes of performance, from its initial conception to the impact the final result leaves on spectators. IB Assessments There are four IB Theatre Assessments, each weighted 25%. The assessments are: Research Investigation Practical Performance Proposal Theatre Performance and Production Presentation Independent Project Portfolio Details about each assessment as well as practice for each will be given during class.
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