A national benchmark in
Educational excellence through integration of the arts
  • Theatre Production

    ArtSpace – A Charter school with an emphasis in the arts

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    Shakespeare Camp 2012

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    The Lion King, Jr. – Fall Musical 2019

Theatre Arts

The theatre arts program at ArtSpace Charter School uses an integrated approach to theatre, aligning the NC Essential Standards in Theatre Arts with the NC Common Core standards in Math, Literacy and Language Arts, and the Essential Standards in Science and Social Studies. Students attend theatre arts class a minimum of once per week. In addition to theatre arts classes, non-arts teachers utilize theatre in a variety of classroom settings – using drama games, informances (informal performances), and formal productions to teach non-arts curricula throughout the year.

Student learning in the theatre arts classroom evolves over the course of a student’s tenure at ArtSpace and is broken into three distinct phases:

Phase I: Primary (Grades K-2)
In the primary grades, the emphasis is on emerging literacy, elementary improvisation skills, and beginning to understand the variety of theatre roles such as actor, director, and playwright. Students improvise scenes that retell stories and from their own imaginations. Students also work with puppets, pantomime and follow teacher guidance to write and produce formal and informal productions appropriate to their skill level. Students also experience a variety of theatrical productions, stories, and media, learning to discern story elements such as plot, setting, and character. In grades K-2, teaching emphasizes accurate imitation in teacher-led activities.

Phase II: Elementary (Grades 3-5)
Student learning expands to include a greater understanding of the overall process of creating theatre. The study of theatre roles is expanded to include the role of the designer, technician, and producer. Productions are treated more formally with an expectation of greater use of technical elements as students mature. Students begin to concentrate on acting principles and techniques such as memorization, concentration, and objective. Student writing evolves as students write from personal experience and research. Students write monologues, simple scenes, and adapt stories into simple scripts. Collaboration is emphasized in these grades as well with a formal production of a guided, group-written, arts-integrated play produced at each of these grade levels. In grades 3-5, teaching emphasizes “presentation,” and students use performance to present research and original ideas.

Phase III: Intermediate (Grades 6-8)
Students learn the intricacies of performance and are expected to take on a variety of technical and on-stage roles. In grade 6, students take part in the annual “Shakespeare” productions (a collaboration with 6th grade teacher, John Hall). Through their experience with Shakespeare, student theatre arts literacy expands and students begin to practice techniques of performance such as shared focus, emotional memory, and communion between actors. In the 7th/8th grade courses, students are allowed to choose from a variety of electives. These electives include a fall and spring performance elective,a second quarter playwriting course and a third quarter directing elective. Past 7th/8th grade productions have included Ionesco’s RHINOCEROS, Durrenmatt’s THE PHYSICISTS, Shakespeare’s AS YOU LIKE IT, and student written pieces.


For more information, please contact our Arts Integration Team.

Teaching Staff

Name Phone Ext. Title
Meg Boerner ail Music Specialist and Band Teacher
Beth Lexa Theatre Arts Specialist
Steve Lipe Instructional Technology Specialist
Lacey Brown Visual Arts Teacher
Waterfall Wise ail Dance Specialist
Michael Barfield ail Physical Education Specialist and Exceptional Children’s Assistant

Recent Classroom News

15 Years of Shakespeare in the Valley!

FIFTEEN YEARS OF SHAKESPEARE IN THE VALLEY: AN ARTSPACE JOURNEY - John Hall, 6th Grade Language Arts and Social Studies Teacher I began my teaching job at ArtSpace Charter School in the fall of 2003, ...

The Little Prince: Time Bandits – A Multilayered Performance

[caption id="attachment_7705" align="alignright" width="300"] One of the LIttle Prince's[/caption] Recently 4th grade students at ArtSpace Charter School performed an original multi-layered social studies play entitled “The Little Prince Time Bandits”.  This piece combined puppet theater ...

ArtSpace Grateful for Partnership with Old Depot Association

Over the years ArtSpace Charter School has depended on the generosity of various community organizations to support special programming that would not be affordable otherwise.  ArtSpace is very grateful for their continued relationship with the ...

The World’s Fair at ArtSpace

[caption id="attachment_7426" align="alignleft" width="300"] 2nd graders completing their tango[/caption] Wednesday, April 27th - ArtSpace 2nd graders took part in their annual World’s Fair. The fair is the culmination of a two month study of the ...

The Genesis and History of Performance at ArtSpace

Since 2001, ArtSpace  has utilized a combination of direct arts instruction, arts exposure, and arts integration to engage students in their learning.  In this 15 years ArtSpace has built an incredible performance history.  Each year ...

John Hall Chosen to Attend a Shakespeare Workshop

NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR HUMANITIES - John Hall, a teacher from ArtSpace Charter School has been selected as an NEH Summer Scholar from a national applicant pool to attend one of 26 seminars and institutes supported ...

Good-Bye Old World: 4th Grade Colonial Night

SWANNANOA, NC- On Thursday, February 11, 2016, ArtSpace 4th graders demonstrated their knowledge of  NC colonial history through an evening filled with performances.  Students opened the evening by dancing a traditional reel common to colonial ...

Coming Soon To A Theater Near You!

SWANNANOA, NC- The ArtSpace stage will be filled with exciting performances, informances and special events throughout December and January!  This week is the 4th Annual Medieval Faire hosted by ArtSpace 6th graders.This is not a ...

Coming Soon To A Theater Near You!

SWANNANOA, NC - The ArtSpace Stage has some exciting theatre and multi-media productions coming in October that promise to engage, educate, and entertain.  Coming next week, on October 8, the 7/8th grade Theatre Arts elective ...

A+ 20th Anniversary Conference: Celebrate Arts Integration

[caption id="attachment_6845" align="alignleft" width="201"] A+ Fellow Michelle Pearson leads attendees in an energizing movement celebration.[/caption] DURHAM, NC, August 3-5, 2015 - The A+ Schools program of the North Carolina Arts Council celebrated 20 years of ...