We asked our teaching artists to send us stories from inside their ARC classrooms. These are some of our favorites!

We did an activity asking the students what they would do if they had wings. I had so much fun seeing the joy on their faces as they explained how they would fly to see other countries or use their wings to excel in sports. It’s amazing to see them connect their bodies to their imaginations.

Two large families (totaling 9 students) moved out of the site this week. I was a little nervous about rehearsing the script since half the group was now gone.  However, the remaining students were excited to play many different characters.  The spirit in the room was that of imagination and storytelling.

There is a student who was painfully shy in the first 2 sessions. She really didn’t want to participate or share an idea out loud… After only 4 sessions she has been joyfully expressive with her body. She uses voices, poses, and has been drawing pictures of our work after we leave.

The students noticed a picture of a turtle in the Book Subway story.  They became fascinated with it and created a whole subplot line about the turtle deciding to ride the subway.  It’s so wonderful to see these young people feed off of each other’s creativity!

By the time parents came to pick up the kids, everyone was covered with stripes, polka dots, horns, and triangles. The shapes were made from index cards and we decorated each other to become irresistible to the Debbies. The creativity was incredible. 2nd moment- a student came in for ARC, “Are we going to make the books come to life today?”, Me: “Absolutely.”, His response: “Yes!”

TA: What would you do if you were the sun?

Student, age 7: I would shine all day. There would be no night. It would never get dark.

TA: When would people sleep?

Student: I don’t know. Oh wait, I know. There wouldn’t be any houses. Just ground. And people would dig under the ground and they would go down long stairs when they wanted to sleep and sleep down there. And when they wanted to get up they would dog and burst through the ground to play.

One of the girls in my group decided to pretend to be the teacher from the book.  She said “I know the teacher was mean, but I would like to pretend to be the teacher the way he should have been.” She then said “Stop picking on him, his wings are beautiful.”  I love the sense of power she seemed to have in creating a more just and kind teacher character.

My kids favorite thing about our Friday’s is after reading the stories they get to make them come to life!

My absolute favorite thing this week is that, when we first started a student who is new at the site, said “I don’t want to do drama!” and he wound up being one of my most enthusiastic participants. So smart, and so funny!

The students are only asked to take turns pretending to be an animal.

*Student chooses to lay on floor to show us how a turtle moves.*

Me: how did it feel to move like the animal?

Student: Weird? I didn’t want to get my clothes dirty, but I knew I had to be a turtle.

I have a group of 3 devoted students who loved acting out Hattie and Hudson and making up a melody and dance for Hattie’s song.  After gaming our way through the story, we drew a large outline of Hudson and the children spent a focused 15 minutes filling in Hudson with a dreamcoat of colors.

During the ARC program session, one of the students said, “I love these games, this is so fun, I wish we could have this every day.

Some of our incredible ARC teaching artists take you even deeper into the ARC classroom:



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