About Youth Classes

Welcome to SteppingStone Education!

“The true purpose of Arts Education is…to create more complete human beings who are critical thinkers, who have curious minds, who can lead productive lives.” – Kelly Pollock, Arts Educator & Executive

At SteppingStone Theatre for Youth, we believe that

  • All young people are artists, makers and doers. 
  • They need to belong and to contribute to their world. 
  •  When young people make art together, they change themselves, and the world around them, for the better. 

So, we create art-making experiences with young people (and sometimes, their adults). 

Art-making experiences with SteppingStone are rich, sometimes messy, collaborative processes from the first “name game” through the final sharing for family and friends. Young people who experience high-quality Arts Learning opportunities strengthen their ability to hone crucial life-skills in critical thinking, social/emotional development, physical awareness, and a sense of belonging

Our classes, staffed by professional Teaching Artists, create space for youth to explore theatrical skill-sets while experiencing a strong sense of community. We welcome students of all skill and ability levels from Ages 3-18. 

Join us for some real art-making, real play, and real connection!

Our Core Values

Theatre Learning by Age

This model is specifically designed with our youngest Theatre Artists in mind. Our Teaching Artists encourage discovery and real-world connections through storytelling and creative play while fostering social, physical, emotional, and cognitive development. With minds, bodies, and voices engaged, Young Artists express themselves through music, creative movement, dramatic play, art-making, and interactive storytelling to enhance skills in language, collaboration, active listening, and community building. During the last 10 minutes of each class, caregivers are invited to join us for a sharing of the activities we investigated that day.

Theatre Learning Looks Like:

  • Developing self-expression through play, creative movement, and drama exploration
  • Engaging in parallel and/or cooperative play with peers
  • Exploring a mixture of structured and open-ended art-based activities

This class model is specifically designed for preschool & kindergarten Theatre Artists. Our Teaching Artists encourage learning through storytelling and creative play while fostering social, physical, emotional, and cognitive development. With minds, bodies, and voices engaged, Young Artists express themselves through story creation, music, creative movement, dramatic play, and art-making to enhance skills in theatre fundamentals, early literacy, communication, creative thinking, cooperation, active listening, and community building. On the last day of class, family & friends are invited to a sharing of creative drama exercises, original scenes, favorite songs, and artwork.

Theatre Learning Looks Like:

  • Developing self-expression through play, creative movement, and drama exploration
  • Engaging in guided group drama experiences
  • Exploring stories with creative drama strategies like pantomime, narration, and frozen image

Create and perform an original play based on the class theme! Work collaboratively with your peers to develop the story, setting, characters, dialogue, and staging. Throughout the creative class process, engage in games and activities to hone your fundamental theatre skills. Perform your play for family & friends on the final day of class.

Theatre Learning Looks Like:

  • Expressing individual ideas that contribute to a larger group concept
  • Learning theatre foundations like vocabulary, actor tools, and how to structure a story
  • Making physical & vocal choices to develop & practice performance technique

Develop your theatre technique in skill-based, workshop-style classes. Explore Acting, Dancing, Singing, Music, Movement, technical skills like Stage Makeup or Puppetry and much more!

Skill-Based Learning Looks Like:

  • Learning skill-specific vocabulary & concepts at an age-appropriate level
  • Understanding concepts though warm-ups, games, exercises, projects, and exploration
  • Scaffolding & building-upon concepts to achieve mastery

Immerse yourself in a Devised Theatre rehearsal process as you create, stage, and perform an original short play or musical! Inspired by the class theme, and under the guidance of your Director, work with your class to develop the show’s setting, characters, dialogue, and staging. While you’re creating the show, study theatrical skill-sets and apply the skills you’ve learned to the final performance. Throughout this process-driven class, engage in rehearsal practices, and theatre games/activities to sharpen your foundational performance skills. On the final day of class, perform your original work for family & friends!

Theatre Learning Looks Like:

  • Integrating multiple performance styles & theatre concepts
  • Rich collaboration – discussing & contributing ideas to enhance performance
  • Director’s notes – observation, suggestion, support, and feedback to introduce and refine performance concepts
  • Providing opportunity for intentional group reflection on artistic work

Skill-Based Learning Looks Like:

  • Learning skill-specific vocabulary & concepts at an age-appropriate level
  • Understanding concepts though warm-ups, games, exercises, projects, and exploration
  • Scaffolding & building-upon concepts to achieve mastery

Do you crave connection with creative and artistic people, like yourself? Are you interested in the Performing Arts and eager to learn all you can about the craft? Whether you’ve got experience or not – we’ve got a class for you! SteppingStone’s Teen Workshops feature process-driven learning, in a specific theatrical skill-set, with classes structured to create strong ensembles and promote a supportive and fun classroom community. Join your peers in an inclusive, safe, and creative learning environment where you will feel comfortable expressing yourself and growing as an Artist. Our Teaching Artists structure classes to minimize competition or comparison. Instead, we challenge everyone to put in the work, stretch outside their comfort zones, and be open-minded in learning new techniques. With this approach, we create strong theatre foundations, a hunger & drive for artistic development, and a network of peers & mentors to help support you in your theatre journey.

Theatre Learning Looks Like:

  • Exploring a variety of theatre games and exercises intended to target and refine theatrical skill-sets
  • Rich collaboration – contributing, discussing, and integrating ideas into an ensemble-driven Showcase of Work
  • Using research, critical analysis, and cultural context to develop and enhance the Showcase of Work 
  • Director’s notes – observation, suggestion, support, and feedback to introduce and refine performance concepts
  • Sharing in leadership responsibilities throughout the class
  • Intentional time dedicated to group-reflection and self-reflection on artistic work

Classes & Camps

School Year Classes

During the 2020-’21 school year, SteppingStone offers Virtual Studio classes during Fall, Winter, and Spring. Programs are offered for all skill & ability levels from ages 18 months to 18 years.

Summer Camps

In-person summer camps are in the works for 2021. Details and registration will be available in March.

Facility Tour

Facility tours may be available when in-person programs commence. Please contact us for more information- education@steppingstonetheatre.org.


  • School Year: register for classes in your student’s current grade or age-range
  • Summer Camp: register for classes in your students rising grade
  • Register online or write us at education@steppingstonetheatre.org.
  • SteppingStone cannot make exceptions to admit students into a specific class who are too young/too old for the program

Payments, Discounts, & Scholarships

  • Online registration requires full payment by credit card at time of purchase
  • All classes require a $50 non-refundable/non-transferable deposit
  • Deposit is required to hold a place in the class
  • Flexible payment plans are available! Class payment is due in full no later than 2 weeks before the start of class.
  • Direct question to education@steppingstonetheatre.org


SteppingStone Theatre retains a $50 non-refundable/non-transferable deposit with all class registrations. If SteppingStone cancels a class, you may join a different class, or receive a full refund including your deposit amount. If you cancel a registration, for any reason including illness or emergency, SteppingStone will retain the $50 deposit and other fees as outlined:

  • Cancellations up to 2 weeks prior to the start date: Full refund less the $50 deposit
  • Cancellation between 1 & 2 weeks prior to the start date: A class credit for the registration amount less the $50 deposit, to be used on a future SteppingStone class within one year of cancellation.
  • Cancellation within 1 week prior to the start date or after the start date: No refund. No exceptions.

No Food Sharing Policy

In order to keep our students safe & healthy, SteppingStone implements a No Food Sharing Policy. This means students are only allowed to consume food/beverages that were provided to them by their caregiver. SteppingStone does not allow students to swap or share food items. Teaching Artists & SteppingStone Staff will not provide students with treats or snacks. Students who wish to bring treats or snacks for their class on special occasion are asked to, instead, provide their class with a small trinket or toy.

Allergy Management

Education Office Staff and many of our Teaching Artists are trained to administer Epi Pens and call 911 in the event of medical emergency. For students with allergies that require Epi-pens (or other injectors) we request to be made aware of the severity of the allergy & location of the life-saving medication up-front. Epi-pens should be stored in the student’s backpack or (ideally) with the Teaching Artist at all times.

We see many students with severe allergies in our programs and work with the caregiver to ensure the student is able to participate fully while staying safe & healthy.

Medical Action Plan

SteppingStone does not have a nurse or medical professional on staff. All Office Staff & many of SteppingStone’s Teaching Artists are trained in CPR, First Aid & the administering of Epi-Pens. All staff receive annual training on protocol for responding to medical emergencies. In the event of a medical emergency, SteppingStone will call 911 and notify caregivers.

Education staff cannot administer medication without an authorized note. If a student is feeling unwell, a caregiver will be notified and the student will be sent home. SteppingStone will not administer over-the-counter pain relievers or other medications if a student begins to feel unwell, even at the request of the caregiver. Caregivers are welcome to stop-by our theatre and administer any medications to their student in-person.

Illness Policy

Please download our comprehensive Illness Policy

Illness Policy


At SteppingStone, we respect each student’s gender identity and refer to each student by their specified pronouns and name.


SteppingStone has gendered, non-gendered, accessible, and single-stall restrooms. Students are allowed to use the restroom that best suits their gender identity or use the single-stall restroom for additional privacy or comfort. Classes take several group restroom breaks during the day. During group restroom breaks, teachers monitor for hand washing and disruptive/inappropriate behavior. Students are allowed to use the restroom, as needed, throughout the day.

Electronic Device & Toy Policy

Students under Grade 7 are not allowed to use their electronic devices or toys during class time, snack, lunch, or recess unless prescribed by a medical professional. Students in Grades 7-12 are permitted to use electronic devices only during class breaks (snack, lunch, recess) provided the use is appropriate. SteppingStone is not liable for the exchange of contact information via devices or for lost, stolen, damaged, or destroyed devices and toys. SteppingStone reserves the right to confiscate devices or toys that have become distracting or inappropriate and return them at the end of the day. If devices or toys are confiscated, we request the item(s) not return to class.

For all enrolled, if you would like to reach your student during class hours, please call our main line at 651-225-9265. Students wishing to speak with their caregiver during class hours will be instructed to call from our office phone.

Media Release & Information Sharing Policy

SteppingStone will never share your information with outside parties. Our website & database are securely encrypted and credit card information is not kept on file.

SteppingStone Theatre regularly photographs and records its programs and participants to document its programs for its funders and to promote programs in the community. When such photographs or videos are used in brochures, advertisements, or other promotions, children are not identified by name. When completing paperwork for class, you have the ability to opt-out of this policy.

What are your class sizes?

During COVID-19, all classes (virtual & in-person) will be divided into sections of 8-10 students.

Theatre Explorers (Ages 3-4) = 10 max
Page-to-Stage (Ages 4-6) = 12 max
Create-a-Play & Build Your Skills (Grades 1-3) = 16 max
Explore Performance (Grades 4-6) = 20 max
Teen Workshops (Grades 7-12) = 20 max

How many Teachers are in the classroom?

Our classes are staffed by professional Teaching Artists who are highly trained, experienced educators & arts professionals. For Grades 1-12 we typically have one Teaching Artist and one floating Classroom Assistant. For our PreK & Kindergarten classes, we typically have one Teaching Artist and one Teaching Assistant on each class. All adults who interact with our students are annually background checked.

Will there be a performance at the end of class?

All classes will have a Sharing on the final day of class. Because our programs are process-driven, we primarily focus on the learning that happens in the classroom each day. Sharings are not neatly polished performances, but rather an opportunity to showcases the hard work student have accomplished throughout their class time. Sharings may include favorite games, exercises, scenes or short student-generated plays. To learn more about specific performance/sharing content & times, please select the class you’d like to register for on our Summer or School Year registration page.

Will students be performing on stage?

Our classes are process-driven and focus on the overall learning experience. Classes may perform in the classroom, rehearsal hall, or on a stage,  depending on space scheduling for the week. Typically, our PreK students perform in the classroom, and our Grades 1-12 students perform on either our small or large stage.

How can my student perform in a SteppingStone Mainstage show?

SteppingStone typically casts students ages 14-18 in our Mainstage productions. Occasionally, we will cast students as young as 12. Casting is conducted through an audition process where not all students will be cast. We typically see between 50-100 auditionees and have space to cast approximately 20 students. We highly encourage students to continue auditioning if they are not immediately cast. Our auditions are designed to be non-intimidating and beginner-friendly. We welcome all skill & ability levels to try-out. To learn more about our auditions please see our Auditions page or check Minnesota Playlist.

Too young to audition? Register for our classes and build the skills you need to be successful when your time comes!

Are you audition-aged but not quite ready for the audition competition? Check-out our LEAP program!

Can we observe/sit-in on class?

Caregivers, family members (including siblings), and friends are not able to observe/sit-in on class. We invite family and friends to attend in-person, “sharings” on the final day of class.

What class should I register for?

For classes during the school year, please register for the class(es) available in your student’s CURRENT grade-level or age-range. For classes during summer time, please register for the class(es) available in your student’s RISING grade-level.

Can I register my student for a class they are too young/old for?

We understand that some students thrive in an environment including students either younger or older than their peer group. However our age ranges are firm and we cannot make exceptions.

What should my student wear to class?

Please send your student in comfortable clothing that allows for movement (nothing too restrictive or too baggy) and closed toe shoes. Flip-flops, dress shoes, or shoes without backs are discouraged for safety reasons. Students will be participating in rigorous physical activity, and working on messy art projects. Clothing may get dirty, stained, or torn. All art products we use are washable. SteppingStone is not responsible for damaged attire. 

What should my student bring to class?

Partial-day classes: pack a snack & water bottle

Full-day classes: pack 2 snacks, a lunch, and water bottle.

SteppingStone does not have refrigerator, microwave, or vending machine access.

A change of clothes or layers is recommended depending on student age and/or weather conditions. A backpack is recommended to easily store belongings. Students are responsible for keeping track of their personal items. SteppingStone has a lost & found. Please call if you have misplaced something.

How early can I drop-off? How late can I pick-up?

Students can be dropped-off for class no earlier than 15 minutes before class start time. Students can be picked-up for class no later than 15 minutes after class end time. Any student dropped-off/picked-up outside this 15-minute window will be considered “Extended Care” and will be charged as such ($1 for every minute over time). No exceptions. Our school year classes do not have an Extended Care option.

There is no extended care option for School Year Classes.

Summer Extended Care Program

Our Extended Care Program provides families with flexibility and enriching care options beyond regular program hours. Open to all students in Grades 1-12, Before Care & After Care services allow for an additional three hours of engaging supervision of your student each day. Before Care services begin at 7:15am and After Care services extend to 6:00pm. Our Extended Care Teaching Artists provide students with structured activities, free-play, and down-time, based on student-driven interests.

About Extended Care

  • Registration is a flat-rate of $50/student/week. The price includes Before & After Care services. Use the service as much or as little as you need. It’s a great peace-of-mind purchase for working parents who travel cross-metro at peak commute times. We do not offer a day-rate option.
  • Any drop-off before 8:15am or pick-up after 4:15pm will be considered “Extended Care” and will be charged as such. No exceptions.
  • Extended Care can be purchased online at the time of registration, or during the camp week.
  • Students may be dropped-off or picked-up anytime during care hours.
  • In accordance with our No Food Sharing Policy, SteppingStone does not provide snacks to students. Please send your student with an additional snack for After Care.
  • We do not provide After Care services for Morning Only students.

Scholarships Available!

At SteppingStone, we strive to make our programming accessible to all students.

Meet our Teachers

SteppingStone works with professional Artists from around the Twin Cities.

Summer Camps

Summer Camps run June-August.

School Year Classes

School Year Classes run Fall, Winter, and Spring Sessions.


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are available via email M-F, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the following:






We Believe

Young people are artists, makers, and doers.

They need to belong and to contribute to their world.

When young people make art together, they change themselves and the world around them for the better.

We Do

SteppingStone ignites belonging, generosity, mastery, self-advocacy, and inspiration by creating art with young people to share with the world.