Play Week: A Riverside Tradition

 From left to right: Elijah Clarke, Claire Morgan, Wally Hunt, James Lamontagne, Katie Lyon, and Jasmine Whittaker

From left to right: Elijah Clarke, Claire Morgan, Wally Hunt, James Lamontagne, Katie Lyon, and Jasmine Whittaker

It is with great pleasure that we ask you to join us for The Riverside School’s production of The Lion King on March 18-19 at 7:00 pm in the Barn. Producing plays has been a long-standing tradition at The Riverside School and over the years it has become more elaborate with the creation of Play Week. The classes for the 6-8 graders are suspended the week before the performance and the students, faculty and staff as well as parent and community volunteers work collaboratively on all aspects of the production.

When asked how they feel about Play Week, the students responses clearly addressed both the work and pleasure aspects of this community effort. Ishika Patel, a member of the costuming elective as well as one of the Lionesses stated, “Play Week is very stressful but it is worth it in the end when you see the final production.” Trevor Lussier, a set builder and member of the Ensemble was quoted as saying, “the play is a lot of work but really fun.” Phoebe Barrett, an Ensemble member and part the costuming elective mused, “the play is really fun because we get to joke around while getting things done.”

Prior to the official Play Week, the students spent the quarter in an elective that is designed to fit the plays needs. The electives include costuming, props, sets and publicity. This year, the props elective also included puppetry as this production has many elaborate puppets in its cast.

Parent and community volunteers are an integral part of the play production, leading some of the electives as well as donating supplies and expertise for set building and costuming, make-up and hair, dinner for the students and bake sale items.

For more wide spread promotion of the play, the students invite News Channel 7 from Lyndon State College to come and do a TV news article on them. Plus, several students go to Magic 97 at 8:35 am on the morning of opening night to be interviewed on the air. Be sure to keep and ear and eye out for those two pieces.

The Lion King is appropriate for all ages and admission is by donation. Please come and be transported into this magical land of singing and dancing, drumming and chanting and admire the hard work and collaborative efforts of our Riverside community. 

Pirates!

 From left to right: Koji Ebbett, Nick Heinrich, Cameron Griffin, Aiden Sicard

From left to right: Koji Ebbett, Nick Heinrich, Cameron Griffin, Aiden Sicard

After the well received middle school Play Week at The Riverside School, the K-5 students had their turn to shine with two well choreographed and hysterically funny plays, “Pirates” and “Stone Soup.” Directed by Janet Edmonson in her final bow at The Riverside School, one could not help but feel her pride and enjoyment of watching these young thespians sing and dance in such awesomely entertaining productions. It is clear these students will continue on to do great in future performances. 

8th Graders at The Riverside School Service Learning Project

 From left to right are: Meredith Nicol, Marc Lamontagne, Sarah Barrett, Piper Rolfe, and Zachary Lemieux with Abigail Searles in the back row

From left to right are: Meredith Nicol, Marc Lamontagne, Sarah Barrett, Piper Rolfe, and Zachary Lemieux with Abigail Searles in the back row

The 8th graders at The Riverside School received great applause and accolades from a local senator and two social service organizations for their contributions to the eradication of hunger in Caledonia County. Every year the 8th grade culminates their World Issues class with a service-learning project based on the UN Millennium Development Goals. After careful consideration and research about how these goals are present the local area, the students chose to focus on poverty and most specifically hunger and how it effects this vulnerable population.

The students invited Bob McCabe from the HOPE organization and Debbie Minor from the Lyndon Area Food Shelf into their classroom to speak to them about the impact hunger has in the community and what is being done to eradicate hunger in Caledonia County, where 1 in 4 people live with food insecurity and hunger. Mr. McCabe introduced to the students the idea of reaching out to their local legislators to encourage them to increase funding for programs designed to decrease hunger and increase awareness about this issue. Ms. Minor spoke to them about how and what they could do to volunteer and donate to the Food Shelf.

The impact of this discussion was great and the students came away with increased understanding and desire to help. They went back to the classroom and started collaborating on a pamphlet about nutrition and healthy food choices that included recipes and information about how to use the foods that the recipients received from the food shelf. Another group started a letter to legislators encouraging them to increase funding for federal school lunch programs.

After several weeks of discussion, creation, and editing, the projects were submitted to their respective recipients. The HOPE store and Lyndon Area Food Shelf were thrilled to receive the donations, and homemade cookies. As well, the students received a letter from a local representative, Senator Dick McCormack, applauding them for their letter, both in the academic sense of its fine craftsmanship and the politic sense of its vitally important social message. 

5th Grade Math Class Field Trip

From left to right: Maren Giese, Ruby Rolfe, Colter Thibaudeau, Riley Miller, Tegan Harlow

A sense of caring for animal’s great and small was well exhibited by the The Riverside School’s 5th grade math class. In conjunction with their lessons on fractions, they worked together to bake and sell pans of brownies to raise money to donate to Melvin the Sheep’s care at the Inn at Mountain View Farm’s Animal Sanctuary. Active learning, patient leadership, and engaged citizenship while building a supportive community were all showcased clearly through their sincere efforts.