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Ginny Butsch's Blog

One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and professionals from all over connect and identify with each other in order to build resources and support the theatre education field. We shine a spotlight on a different member every other week by conducting a simple interview.

 Our latest Spotlight Member is Jared Grigsby, troupe director of Troupe 1810 at Hebron High School in Hebron, IN. Jared is a frequent contributor to the Community, always quick to advise others or pose thoughtful questions.

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Did you know that you can have all of the answers in your pocket? You can with the Theatre Education Community App! It’s available on iTunes or Google Play, perfect for any tablet or smart phone. Search for “theatre education community” in your app store or click on the appropriate link below to get it:

Google Play

iTunes

The first time you use the Community app, you’ll need to log in, using the same access codes you use for the website. If you’ve never created an account on schooltheatre.org, you’ll need to do that first before you can log in to the app.

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One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and professionals from all over connect and identify with each other in order to build resources and support the theatre education field. We plan to shine a spotlight on a different member every other week by conducting a simple interview.

Our latest Spotlight Member is Alexandria Bagwell, a Junior at North Forsyth High School in Cumming, Georgia. Alexandria is an Honor Thespian and Vice President’s List Scholar of Troupe 5368 and a frequent blogger in the Community. I asked Alexandria to answer a few questions for us so we could learn a little more about her.

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http://higherlogicdownload.s3.amazonaws.com/SCHOOLTHEATRE/UploadedImages/e9a984be-c91a-4eee-9580-3581bb1ac072/lady-sings.jpg

One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and

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The Library section of the Theatre Education Community is what I like to consider a hidden gem. This area doesn't get nearly as much traffic as the discussions and blogs, but there is enormous potential.

Any type of finished product can be posted as a library entry. The best part is that it's not limited to Word Docs. You can post YouTube Videos, Power Point Presentations, audio files like sound effects, a series of photos, etc. Before I go into the "how-to's" check out some fantastic examples that already exist, like Matt Conover's entry here:

Social Media Workshop Deck & Video

Matt led a workshop at this year's Thespian Festival, then added his visuals to the Library so that workshop attendees could revisit the materials later and he could expand his message to anyone who wasn't able to attend his workshop.

Shira
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One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and professionals from all over connect and identify with each other in order to build resources and support the theatre education field. We plan to shine a spotlight on a different member every other week by conducting a simple interview.

Our latest Spotlight Member is Barb Lachman, troupe director of Troupe 640 at Shorewood High School in Shoreline, WA. After serving for over 20 years as a troupe director at three different schools, Barb is planning to retire from teaching theatre this year. She plans to spend more time teaching English, serving as Department Head, and taking on some community theatre projects. I asked Barb to answer a few questions for us so we could learn a little more about her.   

Photo via

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One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and professionals connect and identify with each other in order to build resources and support the theatre education field. We shine a spotlight on a different member every other week by conducting a simple interview.

Our latest Spotlight Member is Josh Munden, a sophomore at Liberty High School in Kansas City, MO. Josh is a recently inducted Thespian of Troupe 5082, and a brand new contributor to the Community. I asked Josh to answer a few questions for us so we could learn a little more about him.

2 people recommend this.






One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and professionals from all over connect and identify with each other in order to build resources and support the theatre education field. We plan to shine a spotlight on a different member every other week by conducting a simple interview.

Our newest Spotlight Member is Shira Schwartz, troupe director of Troupe 6815 at Basha High School in Chandler, AZ. If you’ve spent any time in the Community, you’ve undoubtedly noticed her thoughtful advice, accompanied by a serene, Mona Lisa-esque profile picture.  Shira was also a valuable addition to the group who helped beta test the Community, preparing it for our public launch. I asked Shira to answer a few questions for us so we could learn a little more about her.                    

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One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and professionals from all over connect and identify with each other in order to build resources and support the theatre education field. We plan to shine a spotlight on a different member every other week by conducting a simple interview.

Our latest Spotlight Member is Grae Greer, a sophomore at Marshall University in Huntington, WV. Grae is a Thespian Alumni member of Troupe 3161 and an EdTA Pre-professional member. She also serves on the Advisory Board for Kentucky Thespians. Grae is a frequent contributor to the Community, always quick to contribute thoughtful ideas about audition tips and plays or monologue selection. I asked Grae to answer a few questions for us so we could learn a little more about her.

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Adding photos to a discussion post or blog entry can help you sell or rent a costume, illustrate a point, or simply create some visual interest. There are two ways to add photos in the Community and this post will cover both. This is also how you can embed screenshots, graphs, clip art, etc.

ADDING A PHOTO METHOD 1:
My preferred way to add a photo is to use the “Image Manager” tool. It embeds your photo right into a post or blog and doesn’t require anyone to open or download an attachment. To use Image Manager, you will need to have a new blog entry or post open. Type any text you have, find the location where you want to insert a picture and find the button on the toolbar that looks like this:

 

A pop-up window will appear. Select “upload” to retrieve a picture saved to your computer.

 

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One of the main goals for our Theatre Education Community is to help theatre students and professionals from all over connect and identify with each other in order to build resources and support the theatre education field. We plan to shine a spotlight on a different member every other week by conducting a simple interview.

Our first Spotlight Member is Scott Piehler, troupe director of Troupe 6745 at Providence Christian Academy in Lilburn, GA. He’s been a positive presence in the Community, offering prompt and helpful advice and opinions on a range of topics, including technical theatre, play selection and advocacy. I asked Scott to answer a few questions for us so we could learn a little more about him.            

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Since we have the good fortune of hosting the 2014 EdTA National Conference right here in our hometown, the EdTA staff was excited to be able to share some of our favorite places. Check out the recommendations below for the most unique spots and tips for some of the main attractions!

Clare Jaymes: My three favorite places to eat in Cincinnati are Taste of Belgium (it’s really fun if you get it at Findlay Market on Saturday Mornings), Bakersfield, and Tom and Chee.


Jim Curtis:

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So far in the Community Tips Blog series, we’ve covered Discussions and Blogs. Today we’re going to talk about the Search function in the Community. It’s a fairly advanced tool and I’ve found that it always helps me locate what I’m looking for. It’s especially useful if you want to find out if anyone has ever asked a question that you have.

There are two Search buttons, one within the Community and one on the main navigation bar of schooltheatre.org. You’ll get the same results with either one, I’m going to demonstrate the one that’s a little easier to locate. We have had lots of conversations about the musical Shrek lately, so I’m going to use it as my example.

Type your term into the search bar and hit “enter.”


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Within the Community, there are lots of features to learn about and put to use. Last week, I covered Discussions. Today, I’m going to cover Blogs. This is one of my favorite parts of the Community because there are unlimited possibilities and I love seeing how people have used it thus far. What is a blog? A blog is an easy way to share an experience or opinion. If you don’t have a question requiring a response and just want to share some thoughts, a blog is the perfect place. No matter what level you're on, this basic advice should help you get started!

Helpful Tips for Writing a Blog:

-Give it an interesting, informative title. What would make someone want to click on it to read more?

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I decided to write a few blogs, chock full of Community tips, not only to help newbies get their bearings but to help those seasoned users learn more to take the next steps or help others. Before I get into the nitty gritty, I wanted to share the most important tip of all:

Don’t be afraid.

Play around with the different features, click on buttons, test them out, see what they do. You won’t break it, I promise. I've always thought that the best way to learn something new is to try it. Use me as a test subject! Send me a contact request or a private message to see how those features work. If you believe you have made a grievous error and you’re really worried about it, just shoot me an email. I can fix it! This is a tool for you and I want you to feel comfortable using it. If there’s another way you prefer to learn (detailed screen shots, live demo, written instructions), let me know. Odds are, I can put that together for you!

Now that you’re already feeling more confident, let’s move into the world of Discussions. Discussions are the most popular activity in the Community, as you can probably tell by the Daily Digest that arrives in your email each day. What is a discussion?

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I recently began rehearsals for a community theatre production of Almost, Maine and it made me remember some very important “skills” that can get you ahead in the acting world. It’s basic advice, but I am always surprised by the number of actors who seem to find these out the hard way, after it’s too late. If you haven’t already, I recommend putting these tips into practice immediately, they can only help you. Here’s what I’ve learned:

Be nice to everyone. Fellow actors, techies, stage moms, ushers, box office staff, absolutely every single person you meet. This is the most important advice I can give you, I can’t stress it enough. Theatre is an impossibly small world. People you meet now will cross your path 20 years from now. They will probably be your director. Or your boss. If you were mean or difficult, a bad reputation could get you blacklisted no matter how talented you are.

Be reliable. Have your lines memorized before everyone else. Write your notes down and memorize them. Even if you aren’t the world’s best actor and you don’t exactly fit the part, directors will still consider you because you make their lives easier and less stressful. Even better, they’ll recommend you to other directors!

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I thought now would be a good time to provide some helpful tips about using the community. These are based on feedback and questions I've received, but if there's anything else you want to learn, I'd be happy to help, just contact me.

What is a discussion? A place to communicate, connect, ask questions. If you are expecting a response to a post, it would fit in this category.

What is a library?
A repository of information. This is a place for completed documents, videos, and other resources to be posted. Examples would be a list of theatre vocabulary, a video demonstrating a make up technique, a power point presentation, etc.

What is a blog? Blogs are a place to voice your thoughts and share your knowledge. A blog entry does not require a response. If you want to share an experience you had or something you learned but don't necessarily need answers or feedback, this is the place for your post.
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Welcome! We are so excited to have you join our online community for the theatre education field. Your advice and questions will help shape this tool into an invaluable resource.
 
If this is your first time here, or you just need a review, here are some tips to help you get started:

1. First, update your profile. Upload a professional picture, add some facts about yourself. If you have a LinkedIn profile, you can easily transfer over your information from that site.

2. Adjust your security and notification settings. Find the "My Profile" button in the blue navigation bar at the top of the page. Hover your mouse over it until a drop down menu appears and then click on "My Settings." Subscription (notification) preferences will show up first. Most people choose to receive notifications through the Daily Digest, one email daily that contains all of the previous day's activity. Next, click on the drop down menu and review your privacy settings:


Here's
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In each community group, there are a couple different methods of communication. This blog is to help you understand how and when to use each one.

Library: A repository of information. This is a place for completed documents to be posted. Examples would be lesson plans, Power Point presentations, useful PDFs, a video demonstration, photos of a prop or costume for sale, etc.

Discussions: A place to communicate, connect, ask questions. If you are expecting a response to a post, it would fit in this category.

Blogs: Blogs are a place to voice your thoughts and share your knowledge. A blog entry does not require a response. If you want to share something but don't necessarily need answers or feedback, this is the place for your post.

Hopefully, these explanations and examples will help you, but if you have a question about what to post where, don't hesitate to ask!
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