PlayMakers Laboratory’s workshop and performance model puts students’ ideas first. PML facilitators conduct weekly creative writing workshops in Chicago elementary school classrooms, grades 3 through 8.

Our 6 to 8-week in-school residencies are team-taught by 4 to 5 trained PML Teaching Artists

In-school residencies last 6 weeks and are team-taught by 5 trained PML teaching artists.

The goals of our in-school arts education programs are:

  • To teach students fundamental creative writing skills which support the efforts of classroom teachers.
  • To provide consistent and nurturing attention to each student over a sustained period of time by providing a team of PML facilitators.
  • To build student confidence in self-expression, self-esteem, and writing skills by providing workshops that create a safe and supportive place to explore thoughts and ideas.
  • To perform high quality, critically-acclaimed theater to students we serve and the broader community.
  • To form partnerships that allow students to further their personal artistic expression and personal development.

Since our inception in 1997 we have worked in over 60 Chicago Public Schools. More than 10,000 elementary school students, primarily in low-income communities, have participated in the PML programs that provide an opportunity for creative expression and build literacy skills, self-esteem, and confidence in students’ ideas and abilities.

We also offer professional development workshops to CPS Teachers If you are looking for a fun, innovative, and engaging PD for your schools’ teachers and staff, we have the perfect workshop!

Integrating Arts Into Your Classroom

Utilizing improvisation and creative drama techniques in the classroom is a great strategy for social-emotional learning and classroom management. This 90-120 minute Professional Development for teachers workshop is a great way to gain practical and engaging improv/creative drama techniques and activities for classroom integration.

Creative Drama for Adaptation in the Classroom

A comprehensive exploration into defining creative drama and its utility in experimental learning (curriculum integration). This 90-120 minute professional development for teachers workshop will assist teachers with reflecting on imaginative ways to explore and align content with creative drama. 

For more information about our in-school residency, please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

For more information about our After-School Program or professional development opportunities please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

“You made writing so much fun. You sure have encouraged me to bring out my feelings. I did not hate any of it. Thank you for everything.”

–Cynthia, 4th Grade, Lee School