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Each year, Court Theatre’s Artists-in-the-Schools (AIS) program partners with South Side high schools to enhance existing theatre arts curriculums and create new programs in collaboration with theatre professionals in a classroom. Our Teaching Artists work with students in a sustained way to explore text, interpret its meaning, foster artistic appreciation, and support youth in developing their own creative voice. Our residencies are completely tailored to the specific needs of our partner schools, and curriculum is aligned to state standards. All participating AIS school classrooms attend our Student Matinees at no cost.

The AIS Program is divided into two sections:

Literature of the Black Diaspora: This track introduces students to authors from across the Black literary canon through plays, poetry, and prose written by Black authors. This approach to content selection aims to expose students to Black writers to whom they may otherwise not be introduced. This program also provides much needed representation of the Black lived experience, opening wide the often limited or monolithic narratives that too often reduce the expansive and global footprint of Black identity.

Within this track, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) teachers work in collaboration with Court Theatre Teaching Artists to tailor the exploration of text by Black authors for the following outcomes:

  • Text Interpretation
  • Monologue Study
  • Scene Exploration

The Story Lab: This track supports students in exploring the fundamentals of narrative content creation to develop their own original works in prose, poetry, playwriting, digital storytelling, or devised collaborative work with their peers. This approach to creation and storytelling focuses expressly on youth voice and furthering the development of their creativity, ideas, and preferred modes of expression.

Within this track, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) teachers work in collaboration with Court Theatre Teaching Artists to support students in developing the following content:

  • Prose or Poetry
  • Short Stories
  • One Act Plays
  • Digital Storytelling  
  • Devised Collaborative Works

Please consider a donation to support the Artists-in-the-Schools programming at Court.

For more information, contact:
Jarret King, Director of Education

Support provided by

Hyde Park Bank Click to learn more about the Allstate Foundation.

Photo of Jamaque Newberry by Davon Clark.

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