Building Positive Paradigms through Interactive Games


PLAY THEORY is the fundamental method of Take Note Troupe. Developed by LaRee Florence and influenced by improvisational skills, cognitive behavior therapy, and the principle that selflessness brings greater joy than selfishness, PLAY THEORY changes lives as youth and adults internalize its rules. PLAY THEORY is unique to TNT and is what separates us from other youth theater companies; indeed, we consider ourselves a youth development organization first and a theater company second, though you’ll find our award-winning productions hard to beat.


The rules of PLAY THEORY are as follows:

Be Present

  • Life is an unending string of current moments. We exist only in the present. We forfeit the future by dwelling on the past. Although we must plan for the future and learn from the past we can live only in the present.  Attention is a skill that improves communication and enhances perception helping us recognize and thus seize opportunities. Being present in the now alleviates the fear of the future (anxiety) and the regrets of the past (depression). Participants are taught to tend to the moment, listen to others, and be aware.

bepresent-VIMEO 1280X720 from SpiceRack Productions on Vimeo.

Let Go And Play

  •  Play lowers the stakes which encourages risk taking and allows for failure when attempting new skills. Mistakes become opportunities to learn when viewed with humility and an open mind.  When we accept that errors are inevitable we are more forgiving of ourselves and others.  Laughter is potent medicine. Participants are taught to channel their inner child, leave their egos at the door, and have fun.

Say Yes And

  • Rather than blocking ideas and consequently opportunities, find the part of every offer that can be agreed with and say “yes” then add to it.  Saying “Yes and” builds trust and encourages collaboration in relationships and is paramount to creativity. It is key to synergy in groups.  Acceptance of others’ ideas before criticism validates and fosters enthusiasm. Participants are taught to build upon offers, have enthusiasm, and agree where possible.

Look Outward

  • Thinking of others and asking what is needed in every situation cultivates selflessness and improves our life experience.  Thinking of others and focusing on how we can help cultivates confidence and security while self-focus invites comparisons, fueling fear and insecurity.   Following this principle cultivates generosity, which is an essential component of joy.
    Recognizing and meeting other’s needs also cultivates confidence and a sense of purpose, an essential component of joy. In contrast self-focus invites comparisons, fuels fear and insecurities.  Serving others builds generosity and trust in relationships.  Establishing this pattern among peers and associates is an invaluable asset in any organization or relationship.