Second City Network

Why Kids Should Take Improv Classes

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Question: Where can a princess and a tree walk hand-in-hand along the bottom of the sea eating a peanut butter and frog panini?

Hint: Not at the bottom of the sea; that would just be reckless.

We asked some of The Second City Training Center’s Teen & Youth faculty why parents should encourage their kids to take improv classes. When they weren’t busy riding dragons to the moon, they gave us their answers.

  • Your child’s light will shine brighter.

“Improv classes secretly teach students to support each other, embrace what makes them individuals and helps leave stage fright in the dust. Shhhh, don’t let the secret out. –Andrew Thorp, Chicago (Editor’s note: Please do let the secret out.)

“I started taking teen classes at the Second City Training Centre when I was fourteen years old, and I was suddenly given the perfect opportunity to be bold and brave and completely myself.  Kids are weird.  I was weird.  This was the place where everyone embraces their quirks and puts them on display on stage– and have people laugh and be proud.” –Hayley Kellett, Toronto

“In the world of improv, suddenly the nerdy, brainy, funny kid who may not get his due props at school is the one that everyone will look up to and want to emulate.” –Bina Martin, Chicago

“Classes provide the opportunity for not only leadership development, but also a solid understanding and appreciation for the importance of not leading all the time.” –Paul “PK” Kingston, Toronto

“It helps shy kids come out of their shell and teaches loud kids to listen.” –Andel Sudik, Chicago

  • Improv classes are better than the alternatives.

“It’s nice to have a classroom setting where ‘Scantrons’ are just the name of potential aliens from a different world that students are improvising.” –Andrew Thorp, Chicago

“It gets them off of their phones and video games. Improv gives their brains a rest from all the technology. Then they see how fun life can really be.” –Brian Hunt, Hollywood

“It’s better than getting them a drum kit.” –Andel Sudik, Chicago

  • You will (appear to) be a better parent.

“We teach them to say ‘YES, AND…’ and ‘AGREE.’ Ex. ‘Clean your room; it’s time for you to get off Facebook and go to bed.’  ‘Yes and… I agree.’” –Andel Sudik, Chicago

“We’ll wear them out for you! Improv requires a lot of physical and mental exercises. By the time you pick them up, they will be ready for a nap!” –Brian Hunt, Hollywood

“Ballet dancers start at 4 years old. So really, you’re late to the party…” –Andel Sudik, Chicago

  • Financially, it just makes sense.

“Improv classes are cheaper than college… and pay off better.” –Jeremiah Howe, Hollywood

  • And what parents don’t want this for their offspring?

“Improv classes are unique environments where everyone says ‘yes’ and accepts one another. Every child should have a chance to live in a place like that, at least once a week.” –Ali Klinger, Chicago

 

The Chicago Training Center’s Youth & Teen fall classes begin today, but space is still available and enrollment will be open throughout the week. Visit the website for complete course information. And if you’re in Toronto or Hollywood, we’ve got kids’ classes there, too!

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