Improvisation for University Classroom Collaboration

Welcome!

Welcome!

Welcome!

1. Collaboration

Benefits of Collaboration


Students benefit from working in teams.

Group Projects


Instructors can – and should – teach effective collaboration as part of team projects.

Interpersonal Skills

Interpersonal skills needed for effective collaboration

· listening for understanding

· embracing change

· sharing information with others

· recognizing others

· improving self-awareness

· reaching consensus

2. Improv Background

Description of Improv


Improvisation is performing without a script.

Improv Rules

Four Rules of Improv

Click each statement to learn more.

1. Say "yes."

In order to keep an improv scene moving forward, both players must agree to accept whatever their scene partner has proposed. If your scene partner mimes handing you a hammer, you must accept that you have received a hammer and not contradict your scene partner by saying, “That’s not a hammer.” Saying yes is about affirming what your scene partner has offered.

2. Say "yes, and..."

In addition to accepting what your scene partner has offered, you must add something to the interaction. If your scene partner mimes handing you a hammer, you might state, “Thank you. Now I can hang our engagement picture on the wall.”

3. Make statements.

Asking questions does not forward a scene. Instead, it puts the ownness back on your scene partner to come up with additional ideas. If your scene partner mimes handing you a hammer, and you ask, “What am I supposed to do with this?” you have essentially asked your scene partner for more ideas without providing any ideas of your own.

4. There are no mistakes.

Improv is NOT about second-guessing or placing blame. Improv is about accepting offers, making decisions, and moving forward with those decisions. If you make what you consider to be a “bad” decision, no problem. Just move past it. In improv, “mistakes” are actually opportunities.

Improv in Business

The skills learned in improv—support, trust and embracing the ideas of others—align well with skills needed in the workplace.

Improv in Business Classes

Business schools use improv as a way to prepare their students for the workplace.

Improv Classes at MSOE

Improv has been used in MSOE classes.

3. Improv Games

Games

Mouse over a game to learn how it works.

4. Classroom Challenges with which you may need help

Challenges

Classroom challenges with which you may need help

Click each item to learn which improv games can help address that challenge.

Creativity

If your students need help with creativity, with digging deeper, and finding connections between disparate concepts, try these games:

· I am a Tree

· Two-Person Scene

· Mind Meld

· Dance Like This

Self-Confidence

If your students need help with self-confidence or are reluctant to engage with others, try these games:

· Mind Meld

· Dance Like This

Working Together

If your students need help working with others and student work is incomplete or lacks cohesion (because team-members are hesitant to coordinate with each other) try these games:

· Two-Person Scene

· I am a Tree

Active Listening

If your students need help listening to each other, if one person seems to dominate decision-making, or there are unresolved inter-group disagreements, try these games:

· I am a Tree

· Two-Person Scene

· Mind-Meld

Eye Contact

If your students need help with eye contact, try these games

· Pass the Clap

· Mind-Meld

Inclusion

If your students are self-isolating, or need help being inclusive and accepting others’ ideas and contributions, try these games:

· I am a Tree

· Pass the Clap

· Dance Like This

 

5. Thanks and Further Reading

Thanks and Further Reading

Improvisation for University Classroom Collaboration

Produced by Tammy Rice-Bailey, PhD & Kim Baker, ABD

 

Thank you to the following individuals and organizations for their help with this course:

James Boland

Kat Di Leo

Eric Kokonas

Amanda Mickelson

The Milwaukee School of Engineering

MSOE Theatre Troupe

Mojo Dojo Comedy

Lee Rowley

John Salsieder

Jared Stepp

 

Further Reading