Web content for The Improving Co.’s Showtime series.
A NEW WAY TO MAKE LEARNING FUN
Showtime consists of theme-based, in-classroom performances produced by The Improving Co. The shows are didactic tools designed to entertain, educate, and inspire. Our fun extracurricular activities strive to increase our students’ confidence and creativity while learning English as a second language. The experience of a live interactive show performed in English grants them the chance to live what it’s like to communicate in the English-speaking world.
The Showtime plays put into practice the latest developments in child neuropsychology. We know that the release of endorphins in the brain increases one’s learning capacity by 80 percent. By making learning fun, students learn more and learn faster. All of the plays are in-house productions developed by a multidisciplinary team whose goal is to ensure the educational and artistic caliber of each show.
The Improving Co. staff incorporates experts from a variety of fields encompassing the performing arts, music, philosophy, psychology, education, fine arts, and design. The staff has an ongoing commitment to researching new methods for child learning and development. Such diverse approaches allow us to reach out and connect with children of different ages and maturity.
WHAT ARE SHOWTIME SPECTACLES EXACTLY?
Showtime spectacles run the gamut from puppet shows, magic shows, clown shows, shadow plays; mask, costume and object theatre; musicals and concerts, to comedy and games. Each show has its own unique storyline, activity, theatrical format, and learning material.
The shows are organized into groups or series according to their theme, with 7-10 shows per series (see list of series below). In one morning each group of students will be treated to 5 different shows, with a brief interlude between every performance. All shows have duration of 25 minutes, after which the actor conducts a group discussion with the students to review the themes and ideas presented in the play.
The content and language level of the shows in each series is adapted for the age group they are intended before. There are at least two series to choose from for each of the following age groups:
1. Preschool and the first cycle of primary school.
2. Second and third cycles of primary School.
3. Secondary school and high school.
It’s simple. The day before the performances, when the students have left school, our coordinators will pay a visit to the classrooms designated for the shows, to transform them into mini auditoriums, and put up a poster with the order in which the plays will be performed. When the shows are done, the classrooms will be left just as they were before, and the only trace of the Showtime magic that took place that morning will be in the hearts and minds of the spectators.
For a full description of all the shows in each series, do not hesitate to request one of our brochures.
Intended for students in preschool and in the first cycle of primary school, the 6 shows from this series bring Macmillan’s Captain Jack characters to life in the classroom. Students join quirky parrot’s crew on a ship to explore many seas, get swallowed by a big blue whale, meet goofy pirates and quirky animals, search for hidden treasure, and sing pirate songs! Students will paint masks, put on costumes, sing and dance, use puppets, and much more, while learning basic vocabulary for clothes, food, colors, animals, and the seasons.
THE ADVENTURES OF DEX
The 6 shows from the Adventures of Dex are based on the themes, characters and materials from the Macmillan Publishing Company’s learning program for preschool students. We follow a shy little dinosaur named Dex, who just can’t stop getting mixed up with lots of kooky characters in strange places. The best part is that students will get introduced to how ecosystems work, get some practice with recycling and even gardening, while learning the names of animals, colors, numbers, clothes and food. Hey, they may even find themselves suddenly performing in a magic circus!
TRIP TO LONDON
It’s always raining in London! But that won’t stop us for enjoying its marvels! In this series students will embark on a fantastic journey through the British capital, without leaving their classrooms. Designed for learners in their first cycle of primary school, all 8 shows are inspired by the enchanting capital’s unique districts and boroughs, historical landmarks, and eccentric characters!
WILD WILD WEST
Can you say yee-haw? This Showtime series for preschool and the first cycle of primary school will take kids back in time to the old Wild West. They’ll ride on a diligence, attend a rodeo party, get to know some famous historical figures, learn some ancient Native American customs and myths, chase after a magical elixir, and interact with famous literary characters like Tom Sawyer!
WELCOME TO IRELAND
Alive, alive-o! Those are the famous lines from Molly Malone, one of the many songs that students will have to sing in this Showtime series designed for the second and third cycles of primary school. With costumes, puppets, videos, and sing-alongs, all 6 shows in the series will submerge the young audiences into the magic and mystery of Ireland. Timeless fairy tale creatures like leprechauns and ogres, Oscar Wilde’s selfish giant, the haunt in Castle Leap, and one of the most famous celebrations around the world, Saint Patrick’s Day, become real life experiences in the classroom. So let’s do a dance and bang a drum and eat potatoes and cabbage!
TALES FROM INDIA
It’s a festival of lights, with bewildering tales of battling gods and monsters. It’s a world of dazzling dances and Bollywood films; a story about spy games and a tale about how some whale got its throat. With Rudyard Kipling as our guide, these six shows will take students in their second and third cycles of primary school on an unforgettable journey through a nation as rich and diverse as India. Namaste!
WHEN SHAKESPEARE CHANGED EVERYTHING
Nobody has left their mark on Western culture like the master playwright William Shakespeare. What better way to get introduced to his most famous plays than by participating in short adaptations of his masterpieces right in the classroom, the best stage ever? Created for secondary and high school students, these 8 shows will acquaint our young audience with the playwright’s most emblematic characters. After a morning with Showtime’s Shakespeare, students will feel compelled to learn more about his timeless works.
These 8 original shows for secondary and high school students will terrify and delight, weave an aura of suspense and intrigue. The classroom becomes the stage for the world’s best known works of mystery and horror. Adaptations of The Invisible Man, Dracula, The Black Cat, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde are among the 8 original shows that will be acted out with masks, special props, shadow puppetry, talk shows and eerie melodies about the darker parts of the human psyche.
AMERICAN LITERARY CLASSICS
Melville, Gatsby, and Steinbeck are among the 8 authors who will help us paint a collage of the United States of America’s tumultuous history. Secondary and high school students will catch a glimpse of the Deep South and the civil war that shaped the young nation’s future. They’ll learn about the blues, about the glamour and misery of the roaring twenties, face the horrors of slavery, and take a ride on a whaling ship, hear folk tunes sung about the Great Depression, all in all, they’ll hear the voices of the writers who showed us the many colors of the American identity.