School-wide Performance: If your child came home tapping everything in sight, and popping his/her cheek, on or since Tuesday, December 13…then our most recent visitors: New England Percussion Ensemble clearly made their mark! The students were on best behavior, attentive and seemingly completely engrossed in the interactive-audience performance Language of the Ancients. Drawing from prehistoric roots and diverse ethnic cultures this ensemble’s electrifying and energetic program is a blend of information, performance, and hands-on audience participation. The melodic, rhythmic and tonal possibilities of a wide variety of percussion instruments are explored…including the contents of one’s own recycling bin! Topics from multicultural subjects are woven into the program. After experiencing this program, our students will hopefully never again see a drum as ‘just a drum’.
Also earlier in December, Second Graders…were graced with the always picturesque performance by Chiao Bin Huang, Chinese Ribbon Dancer. A wonderful introduction to the Second Grade unit on CHINA, Ms. Huang demonstrated the historic roots of Chinese Ribbon Dancing, then allowed the students to express themselves, choreographing their own ‘stories’ using the Chinese Ribbons. The student dancing was the most impressive: vivid colors filled the gymnasium with magic as the students mimicked sword-fighting in slow motion, ran with the ribbon streaking behind, or simply twisted and spiraled these 10 to 12 foot long silks.
Fourth Graders: this week had a visit from Brandeis’ Professor Perlman, who came in to talk to them about plate tectonics, earthquakes and volcanoes. The students were encouraged to study the evidence in photographic slides from all over the world to see what geological events and forces may have formed the landscape that they were looking at. From photographs of volcanic eruptions, craters from meteorites or from ancient volcanoes to ancient river beds this presentation is a wonderful introduction to the unit on earthquakes and volcanoes & gets the students thinking & asking questions. The students were also shown how the earth’s plates have moved over the ages. Ask your 4th grader how Mount Everest & the Himalayas were formed.
Fifth Graders: the Museum of Science came in to the gym with their Weather: Wind, Water and Temperature program. A fantastic set up of experiments, with hands-on student involvement, for the observation of how air, water, light and heat interact to create weather.
Coming up in the New Year:
Kindergarteners: On Tuesday, January 10th, ‘Bubbles’ science program will be presented to the students. Students will experiment with bubbles… expect a few surprises to be revealed!
First Graders: On Thursday, January 12th, “Winter Wondering,” a science program, is being presented by Judy Campbell, a PhD in biological anthropology. With visuals, props, and local live animals the program describes the adaptations of local animals, plants and insects to winter.
Second Graders: On Tuesday, January 31st, ‘Night Skies’ Inflatable Star Lab will fill the gymnasium…and our brave Second Graders will one by one climb inside, for a first-hand demonstration of the local night sky.
Third Graders: author illustrator Brian Lies, (Bats at the Beach, Bats at the Library, Bats at the Ball Game) will be coming in to talk about how he develops his ideas for writing & illustrations.
Fifth Graders: Wingmasters, World of Owls. Live birds will be brought in to the gym for the students to observe whilst learning about how owls are highly specialised birds of prey & how they differ from other raptors.
If you have any questions about any of these presentations or would like more information on the Creative Arts & Sciences Committee, please contact Elizabeth Graham (Elizabeth Graham