Toddlers Using Paint and Paint Brushes

Sow the seeds of imagination!

Creative Root offers both classroom and after school theatre programs to Chicago schools and community organizations. If you are interested in partnering with us, please fill out our request form and let us know more about you, your needs, and how we might be able to work together!

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Chicago Playworks at the Theatre School at DePaul University

Theatre School Playworks Photo of Cat in the Hat

Chicago Playworks for Families and Young Audiences offers a live theatre experience to students, teachers and parents in the Chicago metropolitan area. It is our mission to provide theatre for children that reflect their experiences in a contemporary, multi-ethnic, urban environment.

Founded as the Goodman Children's Theatre in 1925, Chicago Playworks is the city's oldest continuously operating children's theatre. It has been the first theatre experience for audiences of Chicago's young people for more than nine decades and was one of the first major theatres for children in the United States. In 1997 and again in 2003, Chicago Playworks was honored by the Illinois Theatre Association with the Children's Theatre Division Award, for its outstanding long-term contribution to children's theatre. In 1980, Chicago Playworks was awarded the prestigious Sara Spencer Award by the Children's Theatre Association of America (now the American Alliance for Theatre and Education).

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The Merle Reskin Theatre

DePaul's historic Merle Reskin Theatre is located at 60 E. Balbo Drive and has been a neighborhood landmark in Chicago's South Loop since 1910. The stage has served as a foundation for the training of hundreds of artists. Since its opening, the theatre has changed owners, names, audiences, and has seen the city of Chicago grow and change around it. Read below to learn more about this Chicago treasure!

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Through theater, Creative Root brings joy, wellness, and connection to the classroom! Our curriculum is aligned with the Illinois Learning Standards for Fine Arts as well as Social Emotional Standards.

Creative Root programs can be offered during the school day or after school and can be individually customized with our partners' goals and needs in mind.

Below is an overview of our core curriculum offerings for in-school residencies. And any of our classes can be adapted for after school programs.

EXPLORING EMOTIONS THROUGH ACTOR'S TOOLS
Pre-K & K
(8-12 classroom visits)

My FEELING Self

How do we identify and express our emotions in a connected and collaborative environment?
EXPLORING EMOTIONS THROUGH ACTOR'S TOOLS
1st & 2nd Grades
(8-16 classroom visits)

My EXPRESSIVE Self

How do we use our Actor’s Tools to express ourselves effectively and collaborate with an ensemble?
IMAGINATIVE STORY TELLING
2nd - 4th Grades
(12-16 classroom visits)

My IMAGINATIVE Self

How do we develop our skills of imagination and collaboration to create strong stories and bring them to life with our Actor’s Tools?
ADAPTING/DEVISING/CREATING FULL STORIES
2nd through HS
(16-24 classroom visits)

My CREATIVE Self

Creating full stories (either working with source material or devising) based on imaginative worlds with rich emotions/opinions/environments working towards a culminating performance.
CREATING/PRESENTING IDENTITY STORIES
6th - 8th Grades
(16-24 classroom visits)

My SELF in Rough Draft

How do we find and cultivate personal narrative and authentic self-expression through context building, reflection, creation, and performance?
DEVISING/PRESENTING IDENTITY STORIES
High School
(16-32 classroom visits)

My SELF in Community

Creating full stories based on our real multi-dimensional identities and how they exist within and interact with the world around us.
Grade Level Determined by Production
(2-8 classroom visits)

Playworks in the Classroom

Do you want to enhance your fieldtrip experience, and take a deeper dive into the world of the play? Through this program, students will investigate the story, act out scenes in the classroom and learn about the production process of bringing a story to life on stage. Or you can opt for pre/post show visits to explore and activate the information from your study guide.
DEVISING/CREATING FULL STORIES
4th - 8th Grades
(16-24 classroom visits)

My JOYFUL Self

How do we find and cultivate moments of joy and good news that happen around us every day in our homes, schools, and the world at large? Then how do we confidently share those moments with others?