by Sarah Rinner, Elementary School Program Director
On Tuesday I had the opportunity to visit Govalle Elementary for the final class of our afterschool program. Our Teaching Artist Jessica Ryan has been working with a group of girls for about six weeks. That day, they shared the monologues they had been writing based on characters that they created themselves. After a physical and vocal warm-up, they reviewed their performance pieces and started to improvise The Life of a 3rd Grader.
Building from their character monologues, the girls improvised scenes and learned how to use blocking, pantomime, setting and even some costuming to expand the monologues into new dialogue. They were so engaged in the three scenes they created. I asked the girls about their favorite parts of the class and they responded,
“We had a lot of time to talk about our characters and what we were writing.”
They also agreed that the warm-ups (of which they lead a part of themselves) and teamwork were some of the best experiences from the class. One of the students was so inspired that she expanded her character monologue and wrote an entire play!
I greatly enjoyed seeing their success.