Monday, February 13, 2012

Local History: From Page to Stage

Today the students were visited by writer Liza Frenette. She's a magazine writer and author of children's books.
Liza's visit marks the beginning of a month long project (made possible, in part, by an Arts in Education grant from the New York State Council on the Arts) in which students will draw on the resources and expertise of community partners Historic Saranac Lake and Pendragon Theatre to bring local history to life on the stage.
As part of our annual grade seven "Page to Stage" project, the students will work in groups to write "mini-plays" based on people and events from local history. The students will stage these plays for an audience on Friday, March 23 (more information on how you can watch the plays later).
Last fall, grade 7 social studies students teamed with Historic Saranac Lake to research our area's role in the treatment of TB. They also examined historical photographs with local artist Mark Kurtz. Students may decide to use that work as the basis for their plays. Students might also wish to explore a family member's connection to local history and develop that story in the form of a dramatic presentation. I'll be encouraging the students to talk to their families and neighbors for potential story ideas.
I'll be blogging about the students' progress as the project unfolds.

Monday, February 6, 2012

More Monsters

We finished reading Rod Serling's (he's from Upstate New York!) "The Monsters are Due on Maple Street" last week, in honor of Saranac Lake's 2012 Winter Carnival theme.
Today, we looked at the story's epilogue, and viewed a video clip from The Twilight Zone.
We also continued our editing practice by reading and correcting an article about a winter festival in Sapporo, Japan.