What is Foley?

Lesson 1: What is Foley?


Objective: Students will demonstrate their understanding of Foley art and sound design by selecting a scene (in a group) from A Midsummer Night’s Dream to adapt into a short radio show.


Materials Needed: Computer with access to YouTube, projection 

1.Radio Show Rubric


Hook: Tell me everything you know about sound. (Where does it come from, what does it do, how does it influence you?) Let students answer this as they will, with minimal sidecoaching – here is your pre-assessment for the unit.


Step 1: Sound Design

Sound design is integral to a show, as it influences how we feel and react to what we see. Show 10 minute Wall-E sound design clip (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSf8Er2gV_Q). Part 2 can be shown if you think your class is interested and you have time. Have the students discuss in groups what they noticed in the video about sound. Why is it important? How is sound created? Have the class come together and share their findings.


Step 2: Live Foley

What is Foley art? Explain that Foley is when sounds are produced live in the space. Give an example from Seabiscuit (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqgXhXx-EAk). Let the students know that they will be performing a 3-5 minute scene from A Midsummer Night’s Dream using live Foley for the class.


Step 3: Group Work

Divide students into groups of 3-4. Hand out the rubric for the final assignment. Instruct them to select a scene to adapt from the script. If there is time, let them start working on adapting the scene by outlining what happens and creating a list of sounds they think could work with the scene. If desired, play a radio show (like Prairie Home Companion) while the students work. By the end of class, they need to have a scene selected.