Beacon Lesson Plan Library


Donna Barnett


Have you ever thought about taking your students to a professional performance? Students learn how to behave in a formal setting by reading about manners and role playing in formal situations.


Function effectively within formal organizations - with guidance and support.


-Nutcrackers if you have a small class, enough for each student. Ask co-workers ahead of time if you can borrow from them.
-Pictures from Nutcracker Ballet or chosen performance
-Handouts, including Theater Manners, Theater Manners Fill in the Blanks and the PASSD Assessment Report (See Associated File).
-Rubric (see Associated File) these goals are from PASSD (Performance Assessment System for Students with Disabilities), Performance Expectation #3-Independent


Schedule a trip to see the production, Nutcracker, or another professional performance.

1. Set up nutcrackers around classroom. CAUTION the students about handling the nutcrackers. Tell them to make sure they do not put their fingers in the mouth of the nutcracker.

2. Put pictures of the Nutcracker Ballet on board.

3. Copy handouts and rubric located in the Associated File.


**This lesson is applicable to any performance. I choose to do the NUTCRACKER.

1. Gain attention by placing several nutcrackers around the classroom.

2. As students enter your class, tell them to look around the room to see if they see something new.

3. After all students have found a nutcracker with help or guidance, have them return to their seats with that nutcracker.

4. Ask if anyone knows what these objects are called.

5. Put the word nutcracker on the board and tell the students they are nutcrackers.

6. Have the students orally say, spell and say nutcracker. Demonstrate how they work.

7. Next, show a poster on the Nutcracker and tell the class that the class will be going to see a ballet called the Nutcracker.

8. Ask if anyone has ever been to a ballet. Discuss the word, ballet. Following the discussion, tell the students they will be learning how to behave at a ballet.

9. Pass out the handout on Theater Manners in the Associated File.

10. Read handout to students.

11. After reading the handout to students, assign a sentence to each student. Let students practice reading their sentences with a buddy.

12. Have each student read the sentence to the class. After they have read the sentence, role play with them a correct/incorrect manner. Example: * Have one student sit still in the chair, while the other student keeps wiggling. *Show correct way to dress - have student stand up that is dressed appropriately/unappropriately. (shirts tucked in, skirts too short)

13. Distribute the Theater Manners fill in the blank handout found in the associated file.

14. Students work in groups on the handout.

15. Have each group share their answers. Write correct answers on the board.

16. Have a class discussion on the behavior expected while attending the Nutcracker Ballet.


Assessment Tool: Assess the students after attending a performance of the Nutcracker using the rubric. (See Associated File) Speak with students who scored a U, 1, or 2. Explain to them what behavior you observed and what they could have done to improve their behavior.

The student should be able to function effectively at a formal situation such as the Nutcracker, a performance of the ballet, by interacting appropriately and exhibiting the following behaviors with guidance and support in a formal situation.
 Displaying effective interpersonal skills
 Communicating effectively
 Advocating for him/herself
 Following social rules of a larger environment

Attached Files

PASSD Assessment Report     File Extension: pdf

Theater Manners Hand Out     File Extension: pdf

Theater Manners fill in the Blank     File Extension: pdf

Rubric Scoring Sheet     File Extension: pdf

Return to the Beacon Lesson Plan Library.