Drama Notebook contains the world’s largest collection of drama games, lesson plans, scripts and drama activities for kids and teens. The materials in Drama Notebook were created primarily by Janea Dahl, who wrote the curriculum to support a team of teaching artists who led drama workshops and in-school artist in residencies in Portland, Oregon.

Originally, the material was given to new teachers in a red notebook and when the collection grew too large to fit in the notebooks, Janea uploaded the material to an early version of the cloud. Janea noticed that her teachers were accessing the curriculum frequently, so she decided to share the collection with teachers around the world.

As of 2019, over 15,000 teachers in 100 countries have joined Drama Notebook and we enjoy over 100,000 visitors each month.

Janea has spent nearly sixteen years creating the materials inside of Drama Notebook. What began as a labor of love is now one of the best resources available for drama teachers. Janea’s mission is to inspire and uplift those who are devoting themselves to the important work of teaching drama. She hopes to help teachers: save planning time; introduce new, innovative lessons; and stay energized and positive when guiding their students toward higher creativity.

Drama Notebook Janea Dahl
Janea Dahl

Creator and Author of Drama Notebook

Janea has a BA in theatre, and spent twelve years working in professional theatre. She was the founder of The Young Players, the largest drama outreach program in her state. For nearly a decade, The Young Players served over a hundred schools, and employed over thirty teaching artists each year. Thousands of public school children and teens participated in her award-winning workshops.

In 2012, Janea sold Young Players to Northwest Children’s Theatre and School to serve teachers full-time on Drama Notebook. Janea originally created the material in Drama Notebook to support The Young Players teaching artists. She was aware that most drama teachers could easily teach children’s theater workshops without any additional curriculum, but that having access to a vast amount of new material could greatly improve the quality of the classes while keeping things exciting and fresh for her teachers.

Janea also develops custom curriculum for Kaplan Early Learning and for Destination Imagination.

Drama Notebook Jennifer Reif
Jennifer Reif

Lesson Plan Writer, Playwright and Professional Development

Jennifer has been teaching, directing, and performing, around the Pacific Northwest for decades. She created Clay and Play, an inclusive outdoor summer arts program, served as Education Director for Studio East, Training for the Performing Arts, co-founded SecondStory Repertory Theatre, and has led drama programs for both public and private schools. She is a member of TPS (Theatre Puget Sound), AATE (American Alliance for Theatre and Education) and loves sharing her creative energy with other drama teachers. She holds her BA in Theatre from Morningside College, and also studied at Oxford University in England. Her time with The Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis filled her with a life-long passion for working and playing with young people. Her shelves are lined with children’s books and her happy place is in the woods. Jennifer has several theatre credits to her name, but her favorite roles of all-time are “Mom” to her adventurous kids and “Wife” to her theatre musician husband. Jennifer offers professional development for drama teachers worldwide.

Drama Notebook Kathryn Kramer Waters
Kathryn Kramer Waters

Site Artist and Contributor

Watch a video of Kathryn and Janea!

Kathryn Kramer Waters (site artist and contributor) has taught drama to kids for twenty years. She holds a Masters in Playwriting and Design from the California Institute of the Arts. She is accomplished artist with work in the Portland Art Museum and has shown in galleries throughout the Pacific Northwest. Her delightful drawings can be found throughout this website; a larger sampling of her collection may be seen at www.kramerwatersart.com. Her drawings, which have been featured in children’s books, magazines, newspapers and books, reflect her own particular blend of humor, talent and intelligence. As a collaborator, she is enthusiastic and efficient. Kathryn’s work is ideally suited to editorial and advertising projects alike. She is currently available for design work.

Drama Notebook Andy Pavey
Andy Pavey

Resident Playwright

Andrew Pavey is a writer hailing from the tiny riverside town of LeClaire, Iowa. Enthralled with creative writing since he was very young, he is thrilled to be working with Drama Notebook to inspire others to think outside the box. Andy enjoys writing (of course), reading, backpacking, and riding his bicycle. After studying for two years at UWC-USA, an international residential school in New Mexico, he returned to his home state to attend Grinnell College, where he hopes to obtain an undergraduate degree.

Orion Bradshaw Shakespeare Expert
Orion Bradshaw

Shakespeare Expert

Orion Bradshaw is a Storytelling Artist, Licensed Teacher, Equity Facilitator and Social Justice Advocate; he is a proud member of the Actors’ Equity, the National Education, and the Oregon Education Associations. He earned his Master of Arts in Teaching degree from Southern Oregon University in 2019, while also training with Southern Oregon’s Racial Equity Coalition and other groups. He’s been a Performer and Teacher for over 14 years, and has collaborated with innumerable schools, theaters, and organizations across the country – including the internationally-renowned Oregon Shakespeare Festival for 6 total seasons. He is also a Shakespeare script adapter; his scripts have been utilized in classrooms and theaters from Oregon all the way to Lisbon, Portugal. Through their shared love for Shakespeare’s text and youth education, Orion and Drama Notebook have been collaborating since 2012! Orion currently serves as both a licensed Substitute Teacher for Portland area schools, and an EDI Facilitator with Matthew Reynolds Consulting, LLC. Orion wholeheartedly believes that, by intentionally harnessing our universally inherent capacity to be Storytellers and fostering that within others as well, we may grow toward realizing our biggest, fullest and brightest potential moving forward. May the Learning never cease!

Drama Notebook Buffie LaRocca
Buffie LaRocca

Featured On The Videos

Buffie is an award-winning professional actress. She has a BA in Theatre Arts from the University of Montana and has over ten years of experience teaching drama to kids. In addition to performing in over 100 productions, she founded her own theatre company, “The Blue Stockings,” and is the CEO of Ensemble, Inc. a corporate training form that uses theatre techniques to transform workplace issues.

Drama Notebook Chris Harder
Chris Harder

Featured On The Videos

Chris is a professional actor, educator and theatre maker dedicated to new work and artistic risk. He received his degree from the University of Wisconsin – Parkside and was a core member of Sowelu Theatre Ensemble for seven seasons. A recipient of multiple awards for acting he has appeared locally at Portland Center Stage, Artists Repertory Theatre, Third Rail, Sojourn and many other Portland area theatre companies. His film / TV credits include; Restless, Extraordinary Measures, Music Within, Rid of Me, Leverage and Recovery.

An experienced teacher of over ten years, he was the interim Director of Education at Artists Repertory Theatre (2007.) In addition to his private classes, he has taught regularly with Sowelu Outreach, Oregon Children’s Theatre, Portland Public Schools, Playwrites Inc., Actors to Go, and The Young Players. Having worked with students of all ages from grade school to adults, his classes focus on the many aspects of theatrical performance and acting technique.

You may visit his website at www.chrisharder.com