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We offer theater and dance residencies. Scroll down and find out all about our work:
 

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Click link to see students acting ESCAPE TO FREEDOM ON THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD

Click link to see classroom teachers talking about Knowledge Alive! The Struggle for Freedom Against Slavery

Theater Residency Offerings:


• Using Theatre Games to Teach Social Emotional Literacy


• Knowledge Alive! - The Struggle for Freedom Against Slavery


• True Tales from the Underground Railroad


• Tell About a Time When: Stories One Generation Tells Another


• Pass-Around Storytelling: The Shared Storytelling Game

 


Using Theatre Games to Teach Social Emotional Literacy

(ELA, SEL for Upper Elementary, Middle and High School)

Theatre games teach students to take risks, learn trust, communicate, collaborate and develop kindness and empathy. This series of workshops help students learn how to recognize and understand the complex world of being a good friend, or not. Through game play students strengthen awareness of non-verbal communication. They experience how much can be revealed and understood about another person's mindset and mood through facial expression, body posture, tone of voice.  While gaming with dialogue from popular song lyrics and slam poetry students "play" theatrically with the many scenarios that take place in the hallways, playgrounds and cafeterias of their schools. They create original theatre scenes in which they ask themselves: When do I step up, step in, step away? What do I say? How do I say it? Developing social emotional skills through theatre is fun. It is play with a purpose. 

 

 

Knowledge Alive! - The Struggle for Freedom Against Slavery (URR)

(Theatre/Social Studies/ELA) (Upper Elementary and Middle School)

Interactive storytelling engages student interest in the topic of justice as they hear a historical fiction about the African slave trade, colonial life on Long Island and the Underground Railroad as seen through the eyes of slave children. Students learn the actor’s trade as they read a script out loud, sing Underground Railroad songs, and act out scenes from the play Escape to Freedom on the Underground Railroad.

 

True Tales from the Underground Railroad

(Theatre/Social Studies/ELA) (Upper Elementary, Middle and High School)

Using a collection of true stories from the Underground Railroad students listen and imagine themselves into another time and place in American history. They create “tableaux vivant” (frozen scenes come to life) and dynamic emotional dialogue that illustrate moments in the stories they are hearing. Investigating the character’s feelings through words and movement, students develop empathy for the suffering of others, appreciation of perseverance in the face of fear and danger, and admiration for kindness offered by one stranger to another.

 

Pass-Around Storytelling: The Shared Storytelling Game

www.passaroundthemagic.com

(ELA/Theatre) (Elementary and Middle School)
 

The rules are simple: Build Upon, Add On, Leave Incomplete and Pass. An interactive oral storytelling game in which each student in turn finishes another’s creative thought and then adds on a new creative idea, leaving it incomplete for someone else to finish. And so it goes, round and round, until a story has been built all together. “Storystarter” cards establish theme and suggest obstacles to be overcome by the characters. Students create, script and perform their stories for one another.

 

Tell About a Time When: Stories One Generation Tells Another

(Theatre/Social Studies/ELA) (Upper Elementary, Middle and High School)

Many children today do not have the benefit of experiencing the wisdom of senior citizens. This intergenerational storytelling project offers students the opportunity to develop a connection with senior citizens in their community. Seniors have the opportunity to think about and pass on a legacy of valuable life lessons to grandchildren who are not necessarily their own. Using the art of interview, theatre techniques and creative imagination students learn how to interview seniors, capture the golden nugget of truth in their stories and create short drama presentations that show what they have learned.

 

Dance Residency Offerings:


• Your Move, My Move, Moving All Together -Dance Improvisation, Team Building, and Trust 


• Tell Me a Story, Dance Me a Dance


• Dancing Verbs, Similes, Poetry and Me


• Becoming a Classroom Community – How to be a Good Friend, or Not


• Math Dancing


• Dancing the Water Cycle


• Earth Dance – A Creative Movement Science Story


• Dancing Brains in Action –Developmental Movement for Young Children

 

Your Move, My Move, Moving All Together: Dance Improvisation, Team Building, and Trust 

(Dance/Character Development) (Upper Elementary, Middle and High School)

Dance improvisation can be a powerful, nonverbal tool for building a sense of community among students. While making improvisational dances together using familiar pedestrian movements such as walking, running, leaning and crawling students practice essential life skills. Students learn to find their own starting place, initiate and focus, share and take turns, lead and follow, imitate and adapt, determine when to step out, when to step in, sense the mood, change direction. Patience, spontaneity, risk-taking, cooperation and fun!  Group discussion supports student reflection as they come to understand the deeper meanings of the process they are experiencing.

 

Tell Me a Story, Dance Me a Dance

(Dance/ELA) (Pre-K, Lower Elementary)

How does a good dance lesson become a good literacy lesson? Base the dance lesson on good literature. Storybooks come to life in the imagination of a child when explored using creative dance movement. A dance can be built using the rich imagery and thematic ideas found inside a book. Students learn to makes shapes with their bodies, use dynamics, interact with one another and the space around them as they are led to express themselves making dances that have a beginning, middle and end.

 

Dancing Verbs, Similes, Poetry and Me

(Dance/ELA) (Lower and Upper Elementary)

Exciting possibilities unfold when combining poetry and dance making together. Observing the movement of props such as silk scarves, rubber balls, tops and rain sticks, inspire students to try out the movement with their own bodies. They compose similes, write group poems which are developed into dances. Students learn that many different dances can be made to express one poem and more than one poem can be written to describe a dance. 

Poem #1:

Spinning high and low. 

Spinning fast and slow. 

Like tops speed across the table we go.

Crash!
 Smash! We've shattered!

Oh no! 

 

Poem #2

Swirling loosely like kites in the air

Dancers dart quickly

They glide everywhere

Rising and falling

They fly all around

They spin far apart

They collapse on the ground!

 

Becoming a Classroom Community – How to be a Good Friend, or Not

(Dance/ELA/Character Development) (Lower and Upper Elementary)

A selection of poetry focused on loneliness, mean words and friendship offers students the opportunity to use creative dance to develop sensitivity to language and the feelings behind it. Students also develop an awareness of the power of movement to express emotion. Exploring poetry through dance creates a sense of community in the classroom and is a powerful tool for building friendship. Students see one another in a different light.
 Poems we use: 

I CAN

MEAN WORDS

KICK A LITTLE STONE

FIRST DAY NEW SCHOOL

HAND HOLDING

CELEBRATION

 

Math Dancing

(Math/Dance) (Lower and Upper Elementary)

Children enjoy the intrigue of numbers, though some feel early on that they will never master the mystery. But numbers can be fun for children regardless of their level of aptitude or achievement.  Mathematics and Dance share the same constructs. Dance at its most basic is set up of patterns. The most basic arithmetic skills, spatial concepts and orientation, shaping and shape relationships, symmetry and asymmetry and fractions are all taught through dance. The student choreographer must coordinate TIME (music and rhythmic patterns) and SPACE (how dancers orient themselves in space) with the ORDER of the sequences of movement and then ORGANIZE it all into a coherent expression of an idea. This is the stuff of multidimensional thinking, the kind that satisfies, engages and inspires.

 

Dancing the Water Cycle

(Science/Dance/ELA) (Elementary)

The wonderful song The Wheel and the Water by singer Tom Chapin delightfully describes the water cycle in a five part round. After discussing the water cycle, listening to the song, and experimenting all together with movement qualities and shapes that express water’s many states, students are divided into five groups. Each group is asked to imagine and choreograph their assigned phase of the water cycle in dance movement. Voila, the entire class performs an overlapping dance that embodies the water cycle. Educational and fun!

 

Earth Dance – A Creative Movement Science Story

(Science/ELA/Dance) (Elementary K-3)

Creative Movement is used to explore a story whose narrative begins with the formation of the earth and moves through time.  From gases, to hot lava, to cool rains, to hardened earth, formation of rivers and oceans, to the very first creatures that crawled upon our planet, all of the way to human life. The expressive dancing that emerges is the result of evocative imagery and exciting music that engages student kinesthetic intelligence and imagination.

 

Dancing Brains in Action –Developmental Movement for Young Children

(Science/Dance) (Pre-K and Lower Elementary)

How can we use developmental movement patterns to dance in ways that feel like sea creatures, land animals, flying birds and also feel innately like ourselves? Using movement patterns from experiential anatomy as a dance form, students wriggle, creep, crawl, roll, walk, hop, gallop, skip, run and soar as they pretend to be jellyfish, starfish, clams, snakes, crabs, lizards, monkeys and birds both large and small. Stories and evocative music are used to help them get there.