Mask making and front yard theatricals
Due to last year's successful production of short plays on our front lawn during the trick-or-treating hours, more front yard theatricals are being planned for this year. M., B., A. and friends have been writing and rehearsing and making props and costumes. M. has taken on the job of making the masks.
(Edited to add: lots of people hit this page looking for directions on how to make either wolf or pig masks. M. made these and has put up a tutorial on her tumblr site. Here are the links for part one and part two. When you arrive at her site, click on the photos for the written directions.)
One wolf mask
Pig masks (with D. and P. modelling)
A lion mask
I think they're rather ingenious, especially when you consider they are made with glue, paint, and construction paper. I'm sure you can figure out at least one of the stories they will be dramatizing. Yes, they are doing the Three Little Pigs, and no, the lion is not a part of that story. It appears in the story of Pierre, which is part of the Nutshell Library by Maurice Sendak. They are also doing some short, funny skits, and a dramatization of the book, What! Cried Granny.
I love watching my older children have inventive ideas which they then work to make come about. It is so interesting watching them as they figure out what needs to be done and how they are going to do it. I purposefully stay in the background as much as possible. It is watching real learning in action.
But this type of learning has to come from the child or young adult. In fact, while they enjoyed doing last year's production, I think they were on the fence as to whether they should do it again. On the fence, that is, until more than a couple people at the block party mentioned how impressed they were last year and were asking if it was going to happen again. But my born actors are not ones to leave a potential audience in the lurch, so we're on to round two. (I don't have the heart to tell them that doing something twice in a row constitutes a tradition... and traditions are very hard to break.)