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National Standards for Theatre Education, Grades 9-12
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THE NATIONAL STANDARDS FOR THEATRE EDUCATION*
GRADES 9-12

What Every Young American Should Know and Be Able to Do in Theatre

Standards in Theatre, Grades 9-12 
The standards in this section describe the cumulative skills and knowledge expected of all students upon graduating from high school. They presume that the students have achieved the standards specified for grades 5-8; they assume that the students will demonstrate higher levels of the expected skills and knowledge, will deal with increasingly complex art works, and will provide more sophisticated responses to works of art.  Determining curriculum and the specific instructional activities necessary to achieve the standards is the responsibility of states, local school districts, and individual teachers.

The standards establish "proficient” and "advanced” achievement levels for grades 9-12.  The proficient level is intended for students who have completed courses of study involving relevant skills and knowledge in theatre for one to two years beyond grade 8.  The advanced level is intended for students who have completed courses of study involving relevant skills and knowledge in theatre for three to four years beyond grade 8.  Students at the advanced level are expected to achieve standards established for the proficient as well as the advanced levels.
 
THEATRE (9-12)
In grades 9-12, students view and construct dramatic works as metaphorical visions of life that embrace connotative meanings, juxtaposition, ambiguity, and varied interpretations. By creating, performing, analyzing, and critiquing dramatic performances, they develop a deeper understanding of personal issues and a broader worldview that includes global issues. Since theatre in all its forms reflects and affects life, students should learn about representative dramatic texts and performances and the place of that work and those events in history. Classroom work becomes more formalized with the advanced students participating in theatre, film, television, and electronic media productions.
 
Content Standard #1: Script writing through improvising, writing, and refining scripts based on personal experience and heritage, imagination, literature, and history
Achievement Standard, Proficient: 
a) Students construct imaginative scripts and collaborate with actors to refine scripts so that story and meaning are conveyed to an audience
Achievement Standard, Advanced: 
b) Students write theatre, film, television, or electronic media scripts in a variety of traditional and new forms that include original characters with unique dialogue that motivates action.
 
Content Standard #2: Acting by developing, communicating, and sustaining characters in improvisations and informal or formal productions
Achievement Standard, Proficient:
a) Students analyze the physical, emotional, and social dimensions of characters found in dramatic texts from various genres and media
b) Students compare and demonstrate various classical and contemporary acting techniques and methods
c) Students in an ensemble, create and sustain characters that communicate with audiences
Achievement Standard, Advanced: 
d) Students demonstrate artistic discipline to achieve an ensemble in rehearsal and performance
e) Students create consistent characters from classical, contemporary, realistic, and nonrealistic dramatic texts in informal and formal theatre, film, television, or electronic media productions.
 
Content Standard #3: Designing and producing by conceptualizing and realizing artistic interpretations for informal or formal productions
Achievement Standard, Proficient: 
a) Students explain the basic physical and chemical properties of the technical aspects of theatre (such as light, color, electricity, paint, and makeup)
b) Students analyze a variety of dramatic texts from cultural and historical perspectives to determine production requirements
c) Students develop designs that use visual and aural elements to convey environments that clearly support the text
d) Students apply technical knowledge and skills to collaboratively and safely create functional scenery, properties, lighting, sound, costumes, and makeup
e) Students design coherent stage management, promotional, and business plans
Achievement Standard, Advanced: 
f) Students explain how scientific and technological advances have impacted set, light, sound, and costume design and implementation for theatre, film, television, and electronic media productions
g) Students collaborate with directors to develop unified production concepts that convey the metaphorical nature of the drama for informal and formal theatre, film, television, or electronic media productions
h) Students safely construct and efficiently operate technical aspects of theatre, film, television, or electronic media productions
i) Students create and reliably implement production schedules, stage management plans, promotional ideas, and business and front of house procedures for informal and formal theatre, film, television, or electronic media productions. 
 
Content Standard #4: Directing by interpreting dramatic texts and organizing and conducting rehearsals for informal or formal productions
Achievement Standard, Proficient:
a) Students develop multiple interpretations and visual and aural production choices for scripts and production ideas and choose those that are most interesting
b) Students justify selections of text, interpretation, and visual and aural artistic choices
c) Students effectively communicate directorial choices to a small ensemble for improvised or scripted scenes
Achievement Standard, Advanced: 
d) Students explain and compare the roles and interrelated responsibilities of the various personnel involved in theatre, film, television, and electronic media productions
e) Students collaborate with designers and actors to develop aesthetically unified production concepts for informal and formal theatre, film, television, or electronic media productions
f) Students conduct auditions, cast actors, direct scenes, and conduct production meetings to achieve production goals.
 
Content Standard #5: Researching by evaluating and synthesizing cultural and historical information to support artistic choices
Achievement Standard, Proficient: 
a) Students identify and research cultural, historical, and symbolic clues in dramatic texts, and evaluate the validity and practicality of the information to assist in making artistic choices for informal and formal productions
Achievement Standard, Advanced: 
b) Students research and describe appropriate historical production designs, techniques, and performances from various cultures to assist in making artistic choices for informal and formal theatre, film, television, or electronic media productions.
 
Content Standard #6: Comparing and integrating art forms by analyzing traditional theatre, dance, music, visual arts, and new art forms
Achievement Standard, Proficient: 
a) Students describe and compare the basic nature, materials, elements, and means of communicating in theatre, dramatic media, musical theatre, dance, music, and the visual arts
b) Students determine how the nondramatic art forms are modified to enhance the expression of ideas and emotions in theatre
c) Students illustrate the integration of several arts media in informal presentations
Achievement Standard, Advanced:
a) Students compare the interpretive and expressive natures of several art forms in a specific culture or historical period
b) Students compare the unique interpretive and expressive natures and aesthetic qualities of traditional arts from various cultures and historical periods with contemporary new art forms (such as performance art)
c) Students integrate several arts and/or media in theatre, film, television, or electronic media productions. 
 
Content Standard #7: Analyzing, critiquing, and constructing meanings from informal and formal theatre, film, television, and electronic media productions
Achievement Standard, Proficient: 
a) Students construct social meanings from informal and formal productions and from dramatic performances from a variety of cultures and historical periods, and relate these to current personal, national, and international issues
b) Students articulate and justify personal aesthetic criteria for critiquing dramatic texts and events that compare perceived artistic intent with the final aesthetic achievement
c) Students analyze and critique the whole and the parts of dramatic performances, taking into account the context, and constructively suggest alternative artistic choices
d) Students constructively evaluate their own and others' collaborative efforts and artistic choices in informal and formal productions
Achievement Standard, Advanced: 
e) Students construct personal meanings from nontraditional dramatic performances
f) Students analyze, compare, and evaluate differing critiques of the same dramatic texts and performances
g) Students critique several dramatic works in terms of other aesthetic philosophies (such as the underlying ethos of Greek drama, French classicism with its unities of time and place, Shakespeare and romantic forms, India classical drama, Japanese kabuki, and others)
h) Students analyze and evaluate critical comments about personal dramatic work explaining which points are most appropriate to inform further development of the work.
 
Content Standard #8: Understanding context by analyzing the role of theatre, film, television, and electronic media in the past and the present
Achievement Standard, Proficient: 
a) Students compare how similar themes are treated in drama from various cultures and historical periods, illustrate with informal performances, and discuss how theatre can reveal universal concepts
b) Students identify and compare the lives, works, and influence of representative theatre artists in various cultures and historical periods
c) Students identify cultural and historical sources of American theatre and musical theatre
d) Students analyze the effect of their own cultural experiences on their dramatic work
Achievement Standard, Advanced:
e) Students analyze the social and aesthetic impact of underrepresented theatre and film artists
f) Students analyze the relationships among cultural values, freedom of artistic expression, ethics, and artistic choices in various cultures and historical periods
g) Students analyze the development of dramatic forms, production practices, and theatrical traditions across cultures and historical periods and explain influences on contemporary theatre, film, television, and electronic media productions.
 
*The National Standards for Theatre Education were developed by the American Alliance for Theatre and Education in cooperation with theEducational Theatre Association and as part of the National Standards for Arts Education, a product of the Consortium of National Arts Education Associations.

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