Jennifer Jarman Sandau

Teacher & Theatre Director

About Me

For the last ten years I have been a teacher and theatre director for Park Hill High School in Kansas City, Missouri. In December of 2000, I received a Bachelor of Science in Theatre from Northwest Missouri State University. Following graduation I spent several years as a professional theatre technician at American Players Theatre in Wisconsin and Nebraska Theatre Caravan in Omaha. During that time, I came to realize that I wanted to become a teacher. In 2004, I returned to Northwest to earn my Bachelor's in Secondary Education and eventually completed my student teaching at Park Hill High School. I have three children (ages 8, 7 and 4) who keep me pretty busy when I'm not at school. My husband, Shane, is also a teacher and teaches English at Ruskin High School.

In my current position, I teach several different theatre classes - Drama, Acting and Stagecraft. My classes include students in grades 9-12. On occasion I also teach a section of English; over the years I have taught 9th, 11th, and 12th grade English Language Arts as well as Creative Writing.

In addition to teaching, I am responsible for directing our school's fall musical and spring play and I am also the sponsor for the International Thespian Society. The year my students, colleagues and I produced the musical, "The Producers" and the play "Antigone." It was a successful year and I am very proud of my students.

Instructional Design

Within the next five years, I see myself using instructional design to expand the ways in which I teach theatre courses. Next school year, my district will be going 1:1 at the high school level. Although theatre classes could be taught without much technology, I would like to explore effective ways in which ELearning could be combined with face-to-face learning in the Drama classroom. In addition, I would like to explore the idea of creating completely new theatre course to be taught at the high school level.

As a theatre director, I create productions starting with nothing but the script. The script is a guide through which we make decisions about characters, choreography, lighting, costumes, scenic design, and so on. As we embark on a new show, my students and I carefully implement each piece of the puzzle, integrating them together to create a finished product ready to perform for an audience. This process of directing a production is similar to that of instructional design. In fact, the five phases in which instructional design can be divided (Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation or Delivery, and Evaluation) are much like the process of putting on a musical or play. My background in directing theatre productions would definitely be an asset when engaging in instructional design.

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