Thursday, February 11, 2010

Acting Up? Try "Acting Out."

There is no doubt that all the snow and cold is beginning to put a damper on things. Kids are at home driving parents nuts. The general noise level is approaching all time highs and everyone is a little edgy. Okay, maybe your home isn't quite that bad, but the more snow days you have the closer this scene is to becoming a reality. Kids begin acting up and the amount of guff parents will put up with dwindles. So we look for things to break the monotony. We look for activities. This made me remember a book I read last year. It's perfect for good readers. It's also perfect for families looking for something to do during all the snow days. When your children begin acting up, see if you can redirect them to act out.

"Acting Out'
By Sharon Creech, Patricia MacLachlan, Susan Cooper, Katherine Paterson, Richard Peck,
and Avi
For Ages 8 – 12
"Acting Out" is a fun way to introduce children to theater, reading with emotion and several authors new authors. Rated 5 (humor, variety, content)
Six Newberry award-winning authors come together in "Acting Out" to provide six very entertaining one act plays. This book is a great way to introduce young readers to the world of theatre and reading with emotion. It also turns out to be a smart way to introduce children to new authors.

The authors began the process of writing their one act plays by choosing a single word. The inspirational words for "Acting Out" were "dollop," "hoodwink," "Justin," "knuckleball," "panhandle," and "raven." Each play includes young characters and most are humorous.
My personal favorite is Creech's satire on the publishig world. It foolows a young Edgar Allen Poe as he attemps to sell his famous poem, "The Raven." My children preferred "The Dollop," Susan Cooper's morality play about overdeveloment which included a talking rock. Patricia MacLachlan adds some humor to detention with "The Bad Room." "The Billionaire and the Bird" is Katherine Patterson's twist on a fairytale. Richard Peck's "Effigy in the Outhouse," follows schoolboys trying to scare a spooky substitute. Avi plays tricks with words in "Not Seeing is Beleiving."

Each author offers notes on staging, character development and production hints. This book is perfect for homeschoolsers, classrooms, and families looking for activities and fun educational opportunities. It also works well as a casual read for intersted children.

1 comment:

  1. COOL! I can't wait to read this with the kids. I loved Katherine Paterson as a child. Looking forward to seeing what she has done here.

    - Lia Loucas