Performing Peter Pan's Magic At the Kennedy Elementary School

Posted 9 May 2013 12:00 AM by Kelly Prestel, Emerson Graduate Intern & Citi Center Teaching Artist

There is always magic in the air when we head to PJ Kennedy Elementary in East Boston. Every time Toni Bee and I enter Ms. Grant-Carter’s second grade classroom, we can feel the excitement bubbling. It’s time to create!

We’ve been with our students in Ms. Grant-Carter’s class for many weeks now. Each week, we guide them through new theatre and poetry skills to prepare for our final performance. I’m not sure I’ve ever taught a class with a universal eagerness to perform. This week, the students wrote and performed short scenes inspired by moments in Peter Pan. After each scene, I coached the students’ performances, and asked them to perform again. Even after performing each scene two times, I still had students asking if they could perform their scenes a THIRD time! I wish we did have time for third and fourth and fifth performances! It never gets old to watch young performers come to life on stage.

At the end of each class, we brew an imaginary magic potion, filled with all the things we learned that day. To give the potion some extra zest, I often ask the students to say one thing they are proud that they did that day during class. Sometimes, they are proud of a new word they learned; other times, they are proud that they worked well together. To close this post, I’d like to add something I’m proud of to my magic potion: I am incredibly proud of each of my students and their ability to create and share with such bravery and panache.

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