The Theater Department at AACMS provides students with a blend of rich, engaging and thought-provoking learning activities designed to develop their skills in communication—reading, writing, speaking and listening—as well as critical thinking, and storytelling. The curriculum continually reinforces students’ knowledge of basic theater terminology and healthy development of the actor’s voice while offering a range of experiences with theater in its various forms. The program places a heavy emphasis on the process rather than the product, allowing students a safe space to think creatively, use their imaginations, and express themselves.  

At every level, the AACMS Theatre curriculum reinforces the fundamentals of theater, including basic vocabulary, stage directors, movement for the actor, developing the actor’s voice, and improvisation.
Fifth Grade
Theatre Workshop students study the basics of theater, including fundamental vocabulary and stage directions. Students develop their performance skills through participation in theater games, improvisation activities, and choral speaking. Students also focus on spatial awareness, learn and perform short monologues and scenes, and study the creation of human tableaux. Students also prepare scenes to be performed at part of the Fifth Grade Arts Showcase and conclude the year with an introduction to puppetry.  
Eighth Grade
Eighth grade students review and refine skills learned in earlier grades, applying them to more advanced concepts, texts, and projects. Extended class periods allow students to explore a wide range of topics, including short and long form improvisation, characterization and character development, costume design, methods of acting, acting for the camera, the business of theater and slam poetry. Students also spend a significant amount of class time writing, analyzing and performing monologues and scenes as well as developing audition preparation skills. The school year concludes with an introduction to Shakespeare and the production of a spring play.
Sixth Grade
Following a review of basic theater terminology, stage directons, and types of stages, sixth grade Theater students explore a wide range of key skills including movement for the actor, development of the actor’s voice, breath control, articulation, and projection. Over the course of the school year, students also study improvisation, pantomime, clowning, choral speaking, characterization, performance of monologues, writing limericks and prop construction. In the spring, students study ancient Greek theater. Students routinely perform for their peers as part of the class, with evening performances for friends and family held periodically.  
Seventh Grade
After reviewing basic theater skills and terms, seventh graders continue to refine their skills in movement, improvisation, characterization and character development. The seventh grade class produces AACMS’s annual production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol each December, focusing on additional scene work in the spring. Students also study monologues, Commedia Dell’Arte, fundamentals of audition preparation, and slap poetry.  
Showcase Opportunities
The Theater Department provides performance opportunities for all students. Fifth grade Theater Workshop students perform as part of the annual Fifth Grade Arts Showcase. Sixth and seventh grade Secondary Theater students perform for peers and classmates during the school day. Primary Theater students in grades six, seven and eight prepare for two showcases each year, one in the winter and another in the spring. Theater performances are held in a variety of venues throughout the year.