The only bad thing about loving your job is that it really cuts into your blogging time. It’s been a long time since I’ve updated so I’m going to highlight a few of the bigger happenings in the last few years. We’ve done some amazing shows, and the drama curriculum is going strong. I was selected to be on the advisory committee to rewrite and revise the Illinois State Theatre Standards for K-12. It’s been great, but let’s talk boxes. Specifically, this box:
Here’s the story.
Three years ago, our school had an overabundance of new students. This meant that the classroom space I was using needed be used for other things. I became a traveling teacher. Many arts teachers know the woes of traveling from class to class. It’s not fun pushing all the things you might need for a day’s worth of classes around a building. Especially an old building with 4 floors and no elevator. You can either work for the cart or make the cart work. I chose the later.
As a drama teacher, I hold myself to a very high standard of ‘not-quite-normal.’ So I took an old foot locker that carted my stuff in my early twenties and made this beautiful beast.
It had wheels, shelves, room for supply bags, a mini-projector, and a tricked out bluetooth audio system powered by a car amplifier and a cell phone battery pack. I was pretty proud. With a little effort, I could hoist it on my shoulder for stairs, and wheel it down the hall to rest my back. Fast forward two years and some really strong shoulder muscles, and I got a classroom back! It was a little small, and there are pipes and duct work on the ceiling, but I love it. Thanks to DonorsChoose and an incredibly generous community, I was awarded a grant to turn the humble little drama room into a black box studio theatre space!
Over the summer some great drama students came in and helped paint the room from white to black and we installed some small, cheap, amazon dj LED lights that work perfectly for the drama curriculum. We can develop performances in class and invite audiences to showcase our work. It doesn’t hurt that it will be much harder to give the room away in the future. At any rate, I’m super excited about this year and all the places we will go!