Technical Theater Lesson Plan

Instructor: John Hamilton

John has tutored algebra and SAT Prep and has a B.A. degree with a major in psychology and a minor in mathematics from Christopher Newport University.

Educate your students about technical theater with this lesson plan. They will study a text lesson, take a related lesson quiz, and participate in a fun hands-on activity about technical theater.

Learning Objectives

After studying this lesson on technical theater, your students will be able to:

  • Define technical theater and state an alternate name for it
  • Name the five elements that comprise technical theater
  • Recap some of the components of these five elements


1 - 1.5 Hours


Curriculum Standards


Compare and contrast the experience of reading a story, drama, or poem to listening to or viewing an audio, video, or live version of the text, including contrasting what they ''see'' and ''hear'' when reading the text to what they perceive when they listen or watch.


  • Ask students if they have watched a movie or television show or seen a theatrical production of a book they have previously read.
  • Write the titles on the board.
  • Ask the students to tell the class about the differences and similarities between the book and the production. Spend around five minutes with this discussion.
    • If the students do not have any suggestions, be prepared to give a personal example.
  • Inform your students they will be learning about technical theater.
  • Ask them if anyone is familiar with this subject, or has even acted in a play previously.
  • Pass out copies of the text lesson Technical Theatre: History & Elements.
  • Read the introduction and the first two sections ''The Show Must Go On!'' and ''What is Technical Theatre? '' Ask the following discussion questions:
    • What is another name for technical theater?
    • What five elements comprise technical theater?
    • What two past eras greatly influenced technical theater as we know it today?
  • Now, read the next two sections ''Scenery'' and ''Lighting.' Ask the following discussion questions:
    • What are some elements of scenery that were adopted by the ancient Greeks?
    • How has lighting in the theater changed over the years?
  • Next, read the three sections ''Costumes, '' ''Props, '' and ''Sound Engineering. '' Ask the following discussion questions:
    • How has costume or wardrobe changed from the ancient Greeks through modern times?
    • What are the three major types of props?
    • How did sound engineering change drastically in the 1930s?
  • Read the section ''Lesson Summary. '' Ask the students if they have any questions.
  • Pass out copies of the Lesson Quiz and have your students complete it to determine their grasp of this new material about technical theatre.


  • Inform your students they will be designing their very own stagecraft productions, utilizing the five primary elements of technical theater described in the lesson.
  • Tell your students:
    • An exciting new television program titled ''Zombies Attack the Game of Thrones'' is actually going to be filmed in our town (this combines two of the most popular current television concepts, but you can use other shows if you like.)
  • Divide your students into five groups. Inform them:

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