Saturday, April 27, 2013

Social Justice Event- "The Sound of Music" at Deering Middle School

Earlier in the semester I had the opportunity to go to the musical put on at Deering Middle school in West Warwick. This year they put on the classic "The Sound of Music". Let me first start by saying that it was a great performance, and I was very impressed with the quality of their performance. Coming from a High School that had a ver strong and talented Performing Arts Department, I have to say I was skeptical going in if I was going to like but these kids did a great job!

So the first connection I drew was with Christiansen and "Unlearning the myths that bind us", this connection stood out to me because I saw during one of my favorite songs in the musical, Sixteen going on Seventeen, this is when the oldest daughter Leisel is singing with the boy she likes, Rolf. The lyrics in this song state specifically that because she is young he needs an "older" man to take care of her. And in the song and the rest of the play she agrees, the lyrics are; " need someone older and wiser telling you what to do, I am 17 going on 18, I'll take care, of you..." Her only rebuttal is her verse in the song that says the same things in first person and her last line is "I'll depend on you". Granted I do realize that this musical takes place in a different time period, however, I still think it connects to Christensen. Because even then, the young girl falls prey to the belief that she needs a man to "take care of her". Also, as a classic musical-turned-movie, it is showing others that this is a way girl can and even should act. Christensen would say that this is a bad influence on the youth of today, without giving someone the proper context, I would have to agree. I mean if you explained to someone that this took place in the past and that things should not work this way anymore i could justify it. Christensen would still probably argue against me, however.

My other two connections are with experience I had while I was there and not really the play itself.
I attended this play with the 12-year-old girl I work with as a PASS Worker. As I PASS worker I work with her to to improve her social skills and accomplish goals such as learning social cues. I regularly see connections in my job with Lisa Delpit. This outing in particular the connection really stood out to me. I had never taken my client to a play or anything similar before so we had to go over appropriate play etiquette. As I was driving and explaining this to her I thought of Delpit. I was almost literally going over the rules and codes of power with her before we got there. What was expected of her and she was required to act in this situation. Delpit would agree, I think, with going over expectations before we arrived, because the child I was going with did not the social codes of what is expected of her so she needed to be told how she was expected to act while going to a play. I had to remind of her of these codes throughout as well.

Finally, my last connection is to the actually production of the play and Ira Shor. I think extra curricular's, like plays and musicals, are a really great way to "socialize" kids. Our school systems struggle with allowing students to socialize in the classroom but many of our school systems do really thrive when it comes to socializing kids in after school activities such as this musical. I could really see this as during one of the scenes we had to run out to use the restroom. As I was waiting in the hallway, I saw the actors and actresses that were not on stage, as it was performed at a school and didn't have a proper backstage, so when the kids came of stage they would wait in the back hallway that happened to be by the restroom. So I got to witness the children socializing with each other. It was great to see their camaraderie and enthusiasm with each other and you tell they were genuinely happy and excited for each other. Ira Shor would say that this is a crucial part of the education process and although it is good that it is happening in after school settings it needs to happen in the classroom as well. I agree, however, I think that it is better to have it happening somewhere rather than not at all.

Overall, this was a great performance and I am glad I got to go. (Photography was not allowed though so no pictures-Sorry!)

No comments:

Post a Comment