Lesson 3: Physicality

Time: 45 minutes

Student Objectives: Students will be able to demonstrate different elements of physicality by exploring the physical characteristics and tendencies of the superhero they created previously. 

Theatre Standards:

  • TH:Cr3.1.3.b.Participate and contribute to physical and vocal exploration in an improvised or scripted drama/theatre work.
  • TH:Pr4.1.3.b. Investigate how movement and voice are incorporated into drama/theatre work.
  • TH:Pr5.1.3.a. Participate in a variety of physical, vocal, and cognitive exercises that can be used in a group setting for drama/theatre work.


  • Warm up (Led by student)
  • Movement activity
    • Have the students “write” their superhero name in the air using different parts of their body:
      • Nose
      • Bellybutton
      • Knee
      • Superhero movements
    • Have the students line up on one side of the room (if the room is not very big, they can line up in two lines and go across the room one line at a time).
    • Questions to ask them:
      • Do you move with your head first (like when we wrote our names with our nose?)?
      • Do you move with your hips first (like when we wrote our names with our bellybutton?)?
      • Do you move with your knees or feet first (like when we wrote with our names with our knee?)?
      • Have the students explore each walk with their bodies. Ask them to cross the room, line at a time, reminding them what body part they are leading with. Encourage them to try it to the extreme or “not very obvious”.
      • “Pick one of the walks for your superhero. I’ll know you’ve picked one when you put your hand on the one you picked – your nose, bellybutton, or knee”
    • Now have them find a place in the room without touching anybody. Side coaching:
      • “You are now your superhero. Where do your superhero powers come from? What part of your body? How does that affect you? Do you have any signature moves? Make your signature move on the count of three.”
    • Have one half of the room freeze in their “moves” and the other half of the room look and observe what they are doing. Switch halves and allow the first half to observe while the second half freezes in their “move”.
    • Shake off your character and sit back down on your dots!
    • Tableau (ACCORDION, if there’s time)
    • In groups of 8, ask them to collaborate on a tableau that shows the physicality of their superheroes and how they may interact. (a superhero team!) They will show the class.
    • Discussion Questions:
    • Did you learn something today? Ask students to put their hands on their head if they did.
    • What did you learn about the physical part of acting?
    • Do you feel like you understand your superhero more? Why?


  • Participation
  • Did they participate in the walks across the room?
  • Did they create their signature move?
  • (if this was done) Did they work with their group well in creating a tableau?
  • Did they answer put their hand on their head – did they learn something?
  • Did they respond verbally in the discussion at the end of class?