For this program I created small journals with writing prompts. We used some of the prompts today, and the rest are for students to take home and write whenever they feel the urge. We wrote list poems, acrostics, flash fiction and a nonfiction piece about how we got our names.
I also had some "five senses" items on the tables--the participants could touch, smell, taste, or see the objects; the hearing part was our discussion of each item. The items included a glass ball that belonged to my parents, a small Navajo pin that was my grandmother's, a jar of cinnamon, one of dried dill and one of pickling spice, a velvet burnout scarf, an appliqued dishtowel from the 50's, a small wooden vase given to me by my sister Theresa, and several kinds of candy.
There were some talented writers in the group, and I hope they continue to use the journals and find opportunities to write.
We left Moundsville and headed up the Ohio River to the communities of Benwood and McMechen. These little towns adjoin each other so closely it's difficult to know where one ends and the other begins. The children at the program could tell me quickly, however!
This program included storytelling with puppets, including my two Create-A-Puppets that make the most bizarre monsters. Two boys made monsters prior to the program and we used them in a cracked version of City Mouse/Country Mouse. (City Monster/Country Monster!). We told two other stories with puppets, and almost every child in attendance was able to be part of at least one of the stories.
After the stories, it was puppetmaking time! We made a grand and glorious mess with felt, yarn, pompoms, sequins, feathers, jewels, peel-and-stick foam sheets, and other craft supplies. Look at them working!
So now I'm home again and getting ready for the next performance Friday night. I'm excited about this one too, a program of Celtic-Appalachian stories and songs with two musician friends for a Celtic Festival at Prickett's Fort State Park. Stories and music--can there be a better combination? (Well, kids and puppets come a close second in my book.)