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Archive for July, 2013

This year’s Reader’s Theater portion of our library’s summer reading program was truly a highlight of our summer.  My kids have always enjoyed this activity, but this year was extra special.

Back at the beginning of the year, the children’s librarian had asked John and Brock if they would be willing to write the script based on a mystery game that the library purchased called Misadventure in Topsy Turvy Land.  The library had used a similar format for several years for an adult dinner theater, and the librarian thought that if one of these mystery party games could be adapted for reader’s theater, it might go over well.  Well, we had never been to one of the dinner theaters, nor had we ever even heard of mystery parties, so we definitely did not have any preconceived ideas about how to go about doing this!

Basically, what the boys did was take the very basic outline provided by the action cards for the mystery party and developed the ideas, characters, and plot lines into a Reader’s Theater script.  I didn’t know how well this would go–to be honest, I had visions of nagging and nagging to get it done by the deadlines given to us.  Oh–one other detail–the librarian didn’t want us to know the outcome of the mystery because she didn’t want that information to influence the writing or character development.  So, yes, the boys wrote this script without knowing who the “bad guy” was going to turn out to be!

The boys really surprised me.  Not only did they do a good job, they did it with enthusiasm and perseverance.  We kept right on schedule, and they did an excellent job giving each character an interesting personality and fun lines.  When we reached the end of the writing, I knew they had hit a home run on this project!  I did a little editing here and there, but it was mostly just making substitutions for repetitive words.  The work really was their own, and they enjoyed seeing their work brought to life at the performance a couple of weeks ago.

The actors were all middle-school aged.  So, Luke and Cosette were both thrilled to be able to be in the cast.  Each actor portrayed two different characters in the play.  Cosette was the White Rabbit whose pocket watch was stolen and Meedle Mum, a carefree twin who liked to play all day.  Luke played the Crazy Cap Maker who was really a nonsensical ornery kind of guy, and the Scarlet King who was the husband of the mean-spirited queen of Topsy Turvy Land.

This was such a good experience all around, and I think the audience enjoyed the performance.  At the end of this entry, I will post a couple of videos and a slideshow of this neat event.  (Oh, and here’s a headsup:  the boys might get another opportunity to write another script for the library in the very near future!  Exciting!)

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Flag Raising Collage

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CCC Collage

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Week 3 Collage

The week of June 16-22 was another busy week for the Prairie Family!  We were running here and there, and I had to watch my schedule very closely to make sure I didn’t forget to take someone somewhere (or forget to pick them up!)

Luke and Kara were both involved with a KSU Kids-a-Cookin class. These sure have been neat classes for the kids over the years.  The classes focus on nutrition and eating healthy foods, and, of course, the kids get to try out some delicious recipes!  This year they made pancakes, smoothies, peach cobbler, tacos, and other yummy things.  Kara is always excited to try out the recipes at home, so this week she made the very easy Peach Crisp recipe from the class, and we all agreed that it is so simple that there is no reason at all to buy some frozen or box mix concoction to have a great dessert!

Our whole family had a rare treat when we got to meet with a missionary from Brazil along with her nephew who goes to church with us and who recently took a trip to Brazil to see the country and different ministries taking place there.  He had wanted to show us his slides for quite some time because the girls and I had been studying Brazil for a badge in AHG, and things fell together just right so his aunt herself was also able to join us!  The pictures were wonderful.  It is always eye-opening to get a first-hand report of what God is doing in other parts of the world and how we can be involved in it.

Cosette had a very special week.  She got to attend the first-ever Kids’ College at our local community college.  The college had decided to have this camp for middle-school aged kids to offer them learning opportunities in the areas of science, forensics, computers, leadership, music, and art.  She loved every minute of it, and she is such a social butterfly that it didn’t take long for her at all to make some new special friends.  She looked so grown-up walking into that college each day…..the time when that is where my kids will be is quickly approaching, and it’s a great adventure that we are looking forward to!  (I think if Cosette had her way about it, she’d just skip the rest of jr. high and high school and head right off to college, but that’s not going to happen!)  Anyway, she got some pretty neat pictures on her camera from her time at the Kids’ College, so I will get those edited and put into a slideshow for my next entry.

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