Sunday, March 16, 2014

Review of '101 More Improv Games for Children and Adults' by Bob Bedore


101 More Improv Games for Children and Adults: A Smart Fun Book for Ages 5 and Up is the follow-up to Bob Bedore’s popular 101 Improv Games for Children and Adults. This sequel takes us even deeper into the craft of improv — the magical art of creating something out of nothing — with all new games!

Author Bob Bedore emphasizes how you can use improvisation, creativity, and teamwork any time, any place, to get your imagination flowing, win over a crowd, or be a wittier conversationalist. Actors and improv students will appreciate the author's fun, down-to-earth approach to developing theater craft. And improv isn't only for serious thespians. Used as a classroom activity, it teaches kids how to have fun, relax, and work together without seeming like an educational tool at all.

Great on its own or as a companion to Bedore’s first book, 101 More Improv Games for Children and Adults is centered around entertaining an audience and creating memorable scenes. This sequel includes information on how to produce your own improv show.

101 More Improv Games for Children and Adults is full of wacky and brilliant activities for kids, teachers, actors, comedians, improv groups, or anyone else.

**My review, which first appeared on Examiner**
This book is filled with all kinds of fun activities for most ages. I would recommend it for elementary and beyond, though some could be scaled back for kindergartners, as well.

The first quarter of the book provides some examples as to how an improv situation works, via descriptions known as "Magic Moments." It provides rules on how to "stay in the game" and provides a general outline that fits all of the different types of activities. It doesn't get very in depth with the methodology involved with doing improv. In fact, author Bob Bedore recommends you read his first book to get more of that information. I don't know much about doing improv, but still felt that there was adequate explanation in this book. Bob does provide his contact information, should you have questions. 
These activities would be great for building community within a group, forging relationships and bonding experiences. It gives children a chance to practice speech and language skills, as well as helping them to build confidence. They also have to pay attention to what is going on, so that they can effectively participate. My favorites are the ones where the audience calls out different characters or emotions, music is played to dictate movement, or the one-word debate.
While kids would benefit from having an adult supervise or guide the activities, once the concept is introduced to them, they could page through this book for ideas on their own.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. 
Buy links
Amazon \ Barnes & Noble \ Hunter House

Get the first book, 101 Improv Games for Children and Adults

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