DRAFT: This module has unpublished changes.

Cheryl Murphy

Intro to Acting Lesson Plan

Improv Scenes


Goal:  Students will work in groups to create an improvised scene using the 5 W’s – Who, What, Where, When, Why.


Materials: Group Members, Literacy Chart, Lists of examples of the 5 W’s



1. Students will briefly discuss the definition of improvisation (a performance given without prior planning or preparation) and the elements needed to create a scene (character, setting, plot, conflict etc).  Connections will be made between the 5 W’s and these elements: 

 Where = Setting, Who = Characters, What = Plot or action of the scene, When = time (of day or in history), Why = Conflict OR Reason for the scene to take place


2. Three advanced students will be chosen at the beginning of class to look at a random setting, character, plot and conflict and asked to improvise a scene in front of the class for demonstration. 


** Although students will have time to prepare a scene the improvisation comes from their having to create the scene using the random chosen Who, Where and Why.


3. Students will break up into groups of 7-8 and draw a who, where, and why out of a hat. Students will have rehearsal time to develop a short scene, 1-2 mins keeping in mind the elements described in discussion. 




  1. Groups will decide on the When (time) and What (plot- action of the scene) based on the elements they randomly chose
  2. Each group member must be a character in the scene
  3. Each character must have 2 lines- each scene will have 14-16 lines total
  4. Scenes must have a beginning (explaining who they are, where they are, and what they are doing), middle (why they are there – conflict or the reason the scene is taking place) and an end ( resolution of conflict, tying up loose ends)


4. Students will present scenes to the rest of the class for evaluation and grade


5. Once all scenes are presented, class will evaluate and discuss if/how elements were used.




Rubric for grading: 

  • Use of all elements of the scene (5 Ws)/ clear beginning, middle, end
  • Clear character- every actor has a purpose in the scene and speaks 2 lines
  • Blocking, diction – audience can see and hear everyone throughout scene
  • Group works as an ensemble/ interaction between characters/ actors in scene


Terminology: Plot, Character, Setting, Conflict, Improvisation


Literary Objectives:


  • To understand a concept and construct meaning
  • Participate in class discussion
  • To make and oral presentation
  • Respond to what was viewed and heard



Grocery Store




Rest stop on Highway

Amusement Park




Base Ball Stadium



Proud Parent

Old Man/Women

Homeless Person

School Children


Store Clerk


Young Married Couple


Biggest Sports Fan Ever



Waiting for someone

Late for an event

Getting fired

Forgot someone’s Birthday

In love with someone who doesn’t love you back

Lost something

DRAFT: This module has unpublished changes.