Staged Readers Theatre

Costume and stage props are now more important.

     Staged Readers Theatre is a more advanced form of presentation. Movements such as entrances, exits and gestures add to the development of character throughout the performance.


  1. Choose a script.

  2. Decide on the role each person will play.

  3. Read the script over several times in a quiet area of the classroom. Make sure you are pronouncing the words correctly and that you are reading with feeling.

  4. Decide on the staging. Will you have different levels for narrators? How will you position the characters? What simple props that can be carried on stage with your script will you use? What gestures should you make as you say the words? All group members are to help the other members say the words with feeling and expression. One member write out the plan and hand it to the teacher.

  5. Will you use music stands? Decide and let the teacher know.

  6. Discuss who will enter first, second, etc and how you will enter. Scripts should all be held in the right hand as you enter.

  7. Decide who will give the signal to start.

  8. Remember characters who do not speak first have their backs to the audience until it is their turn to speak.

  9. When the performance ends, readers exit the stage taking the script with them one at a time in reversed order of entrance.

  10. Draw out the floor plan of where everyone will stand on the stage to read. Example below.

  11. See Aaron Shepard's Ideas.

An example of a simple staged play.


  Main Character

              Narrator 1                                                  Narrator 2   


               Father                                                                 Child 1

                                              Child 2


A few props can add visual interest and help convey important story details. Always be on the lookout to collect items that you and your group might use to enhance your performances.  It may be helpful to have a bell to use for a phone ringing or a computer keyboard for effect. Chairs and bowls would add interest to a performance where characters are at a table.


  • Organization is a essential to Readers Theater. Designate a Readers Theater center in your room or set aside a cabinet or bookshelf for your supplies. Large laundry bins are very good storage units as well. Each group could have their own basket.

  • Use cereal boxes to hold scripts  and place each box next to the laundry basket. The boxes could be covered in Mac Tac.

  •  Also, on a side bulletin board or on large charts around the room, post  reminders and announcements, count downs for when lines should be known, etc.

  •  Keeping all of the materials together and easily accessible for your students. If they know where to put things it makes things go more smoothly and helps to avoid 'time off task'. There is nothing worse than kids always searching for lost scripts and missing props.


Reader's Workshop

COSTUMES Simple costumes and props can help performers get into character and engage your audience. These costumes need not be elaborate. They can be as simple as different types of hats! These will help your audience to distinguish between roles of characters and will increase their enjoyment . There are a few  rules to attend to for costumes and props.

(a) Keep costumes to a minimum so they donít distract the audience or performers.

(b) Be sure that costumes are not too large so they donít interfere with the performerís ability to perform or read the script.

 (c)  You may want to make costumes and props at home. Sometimes if you have Home Economics or Family studies in your school, the teacher could help by allowing you time to make your costume in school.

Performers sometimes wear simple character nametags made of tag board rather than costumes. You will have to make sure the name tag is large enough that audience members at the back can see them. Your group can decide if you need additional items to enhance the characters in your script. Items, such as hats, glasses, and animals ears sometimes add funny aspects to the play. In the instances where one student plays two parts, costumes can help the audience to distinguish between the two characters.

Simple masks can add interest and help  if you feel  shy in front of an audience. The mask can make you feel less nervous about performing. Be sure masks do not cover your mouth and do not interfere with your ability to throw your voice.