Drama builds real world skills

Join the Actors Workshop Class For Middle School Students this Summer
Rich Boschetti, DPIE Academy Superintendent
April 8, 2019

DPIE is excited to announce that Dublin High Drama teacher Kat DeLapp is partnering with us to offer our first ever Actor’s Workshop class for middle school students. The new six-week course will be offered as part of DPIE’s Middle School STEM Summer program from June 5th to July 11 at our new location of Fallon Middle School.

Ms. DeLapp has served as the head of the Dublin drama program since the fall of the 2016–17 school year and has directed Dublin students in a variety of successful shows including Guys & Dolls, Rumors, A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream and The Pajama Game.  Prior to coming to Dublin she earned her undergrad degree in performing Arts at the Connecticut Hart School of Music, Theater & Dance and completed her masters degree in Educational Theater at College of New York.

While living in New York, Ms DeLapp performed in a number of independent theater projects before deciding to follow her parents into education where she has a passion for working with young people and directing. However, recently she played Mrs. Potts in the production of Beauty and the Beast at Cal State East Bay, which was sponsored by Grand Perming Arts.

Actor’s Workshop Bridges the Gap for Dublin Students

Asked why she was offering a class for middle school students during the summer she said .....

Ms Kat Delapp, Head of Drama at Dublin High School

Ms Kat DeLapp

“I’m excited about bridging the gap in the district of offering more exposure to the performing arts to Dublin students. My goal is for students to walk away from the class with a sense of optimism, curiosity and respect for the dramatic arts”.
“While we have some drama programs throughout the district, I would love to extend the opportunity for dramatic arts education to all students in the district.  My hope is that students will love the experience and will consider enrolling in high school classes when they get to high school.”

Drama Builds Real World Skill Sets

Research has determined that student participation in dramatic arts classes helps develop many important abilities for students including self-confidence, communication and public speaking skills, creativity, cooperation, emotional intelligence and just as importantly it helps nurture student connections and friendships.

“The skills that we work on in the drama classroom are the skills that are coveted by the top universities and corporations in the world,” explained Ms. DeLapp. “It doesn’t matter what your field of study, students need to be able to think on their feet, communicate effectively, problem solve in creative ways and bring enthusiasm for their work. Developing these skills is exactly what drama classes are all about.”

Asked why she was excited about teaching drama for five hours per day for six-weeks, Ms. DeLapp replied, “This time will allow us to work on both soft and hard skills like physical theatre, voice skills, script analysis and characterization. It will afford us the time to critique our own work which is vital for strong and successful performances. Successful students will have the chance to bypass the introductory Drama 1 course in high school and go directly into our Intermediate Drama 2 program.”

DPIE Question: In a school district that is very STEM oriented, what is the value to students in participating in Performing Arts courses and how do course like your Actor’s Workshop class better prepare students for the world outside of the classroom.

Dublin High School Drama Students

Ms. DeLapp responded, “Aside from offering an environment where students can explore their imagination freely, a drama classroom also fosters a culture of courage, community and confidence.  The soft skills introduced in a drama classroom are essential to any successful work place.  Businesses like Google and Apple look at these interpersonal skills just as heavily as they do the hard content skills when hiring.”

“Some pre-med programs are encouraging their students to take drama classes in college to improve their bedside manner. Pre-law, business and political science majors are encouraged to take drama to enhance their communication and negotiation skills. More importantly, drama teaches students how to navigate a difficult world, to approach challenges with grit and humility and to learn how to create connections with others.”

DPIE is excited to work with Ms DeLapp to provide increased opportunities for Dublin students to experience performing arts courses.  For more information about the Actor’s Workshop course and other middle school courses, click here