Importance of Costumes


Students will demonstrate an understanding of costume applicability by discussing with the class how costumes subtract or add to a character.


Materials Needed

Some type of costume (ex: 80s aerobic, rocker, flower child), fairy tale costumes, Contentless Scene  Contentless Scene


Lesson Directions


Anticipatory Set/Hook

Come into the class wearing a wacky costume, but act like something the costume isn’t. For example, come into class in a nerdy outfit and act very loud and obnoxious.



Transition: Ask the students what they thought when you walked into the classroom. Did they notice that your personality and costume didn’t quite match? Why was it strange?


Discussion: Tell them that according to a study done by Janet Elsea that in the first four minutes of meeting a stranger our understanding of that person is based on three factors: appearance, 55%; tone of voice, 38%; what the person is saying, 7%. The way people look affect the way people act and the way others perceive them.


Instruction: Break students up into groups of two. Give each group a contentless scene to work with. Say we are going to play our own version of Who’s Line is it Anyway? Each group will come up and the class will yell out what kind of characters they are (ex: medieval princess, 50s sock hopper, Elvis, gothic, a knight, etc.), the pair must then perform the scene as if they were those characters.


Discussion: What did these characters do to the scene? Did it change the way they moved if they knew that they were supposed to be wearing a dress or some armor?


Instruction: Now have the students get into groups of four. Hand out fairy tale assignments. Tell them they will need to act out these fairy tales in three-four minutes and they have seven minutes to plan it. Once they have their assignments and they have planned out how they will perform it for the class then tell them to come and get their costumes. Here is the kicker, give each group the set of costumes that do not match their fairy tale. Tell them not to ask any questions just yet, but to use the costumes the best they can.


Modeling: Have each group perform their fairy tale skits.


Discussion: What was the big deal? Why did it matter that the costumes were wrong? The words and the story were still the same right? Ask for volunteers to say how the wrong costumes took away from the story?



Whether or not the students participated in discussions and group activities.