Upper School Classes

List of 7 items.

  • Theater 1: Intro to Theater (9-12)

    This is an introductory course where students learn the basics of theater history, terminology, and performance. Students learn character development through monologue work and scene study. Class consists of games, storytelling exercises, and in class performances. Theater I is a year long offering. Grades 9-12.
  • Theater 2: The Actor (10-12)

    Prerequisite: Theater 1 or permission by the instructor.
    Theater I or permission from the Instructor.
    Students focus on basic acting techniques and analytical skills using improvisation and mask work. In depth monologue work is used to help students find their voice and play different characters for range and creativity. Students will delve into sketch writing in order to deepen character development and further understand storytelling. By the end of the year, students have a portfolio of monologues and sketches, ie. Shakespeare, Contemporary, etc. Theater II is a year long offering.
  • Advanced Improvisational Theater (Period 8 or 8/9) (10-12)

    Prerequisite: Intro to Improvisational Theater
    Advanced Improvisational Theater, also known as ComedySportz HSL, is by recommendation only. In this class students will spend Tuesdays learning how to strengthen improvisation skills, allowing opportunity to be challenged by advanced concepts and structure! In this course we will tell complex narratives, deepen character study through nuance, find the game within the narrative, include status concepts, transfers and emotions to strengthen onstage performances. The course includes short form improvisation games and techniques.On Thursdays, students will either focus on Sketch Comedy Writing and Performance or Long Form Improvisation. Those who choose to focus on Sketch Comedy will create scripted comedy sketches. Utilizing narrative and character exercises, original comedy pieces will be written. Students will collaborate, sharing constructive criticism from both an audience and director point of view, through table reads. At least one performance will take place, showcasing the works created. Sketches will include both live comedy and digital shorts. Those more advanced students who instead pursue Long Form Improvisation how to create a show, how to create a hook for the show, research of genre and style, development process, performance structure, rehearsal, and final execution. At least one performance will take place, showcasing the work(s) created. This course will culminate in monthly performances on Windward's ComedySportz HSL team and one or more long form performances in the school year. Students will be required to participate in ComedySportz LA's Gamecon I and II and must see two or more Los Angeles improvisation shows and write a review. By recommendation only.
  • Advanced Theater Ensemble (10-12)

    This class is intended for advanced acting students. The students will hone their acting craft and have the opportunity to work as an ensemble to create provocative work. The year will begin with scene study and monologue work to prepare  students interested in the college audition process and more. Students will organize and participate in the One Act Festival. Class will include in depth discussions about their work and process. This ensemble will workshop a full length play as a class for the end of the year.
    Advanced Ensemble is a year long offering. By audition only.
  • Intro to Improvisational Theater (Period 8 or 8/9) (9-10)

    In this course, on Tuesdays students participate in an improvisation workshop designed for beginner and intermediate performers. Tuesday will feature techniques in, but not limited to, creating narrative, improvised scenarios, mastering playful games, discovering spontaneous characters, and learning how to think on the spot. On Thursdays, students will either focus on Sketch Comedy Writing and Performance or Long Form Improvisation. Those who choose to focus on Sketch Comedy will create scripted comedy sketches. Utilizing narrative and character exercises, original comedy pieces will be written. Students will collaborate, sharing constructive criticism from both an audience and director point of view, through table reads. At least one performance will take place, showcasing the works created. Sketches will include both live comedy and digital shorts. Those more advanced students who instead pursue Long Form Improvisation how to create a show, how to create a hook for the show, research of genre and style, development process, performance structure, rehearsal, and final execution. At least one performance will take place, showcasing the work(s) created.Introduction to Improvisational Theater is a perfect starting place for students who want to hone improv skills and eventually be on Windward's ComedySportz High School League team or if you want to learn the skills without the pressure of performance.
  • Performing Arts Technology 1 (9-12)

    Introduction to theatrical, performance, and production design (lighting, sound, scenic and costume).  This class aims to define the role of the designer, establish the differences between design and technical design, distinguish between good and bad design and the role technology plays in design.  Students will consider how design relates to storytelling and formulate their own design aesthetic.  Students will engage in cross-discipline learning that leverages Windward’s Design and CREATE studios in connection with production design in the theater and other performance spaces.  Students will explore application of design concepts to other professional disciplines through small assignments and discussions.  In pursuit of becoming better visual storytellers, students will work as crew for school productions.
    This course serves as STEAM Scholars Arts class.


  • Theater 3: Scene Study and Directing for the Actor (11-12)

    Prerequisite: Theater 2 or permission by the instructor.
    During semester one, students have the opportunity to read important full length plays and analyze the text thinking about structure, character, given circumstances, objective, and storytelling. Students will think critically about acting, direction, set design, and individual interpretation. The second semester will focus on directing. Students will investigate the role of the director and foster the director’s relationship with the actor. The emphasis of this class is on analysis and interpretation of scenes and monologues. Students will explore bringing the text to life through creative thought and active risk taking. The class will participate as actors and directors in this class, getting the chance to interpret the text, and blocking in both roles. Theater III is a year long offering.
Windward School is a 7-12, co-educational, independent day school in Los Angeles, California.