Sugar Bowl Academy students collaborate to write, produce play
Special to the Sun
Communication, collaboration, creation, and critical thinking are generally regarded as the pillars of 21st century learning.
Sugar Bowl Academy sixth and seventh-grade students showcased the 21st century skills they have cultivated at school this year, performing a one-act play they wrote for students, faculty and parents that combined the ancient Japanese Noh performance style with the history they recently learned of ancient China’s Qin dynasty.
“In seventh grade, we study Noh plays from ancient Japan, and in sixth, we study ancient China and the Qin dynasty,” explained Sugar Bowl Academy sixth and seventh-grade teacher Alexis Cooper.
“As the sixth graders were reading about Emperor Qin, we learned about his fear of death and how he had died mysteriously after his magicians told him about a ‘magic potion.’ At this point, we all began laughing because we could see in our minds how history may have occurred at this point. The seventh graders expressed that they wanted to do a Noh play about Emperor Qin, which would include students from both grades.”
From there, the creative instincts of the students took over. Ski poles and racing shin guards were temporarily repurposed as props. Face paint made for Noh masks. The students developed a plot line, script and stage directions, even meeting their teacher at school early one day to further refine their work.
Collaboration led to creation, culminating in performances before the Sugar Bowl Academy student body, teachers and parents at Sugar Bowl Resort’s Village Hall.
“I am very proud of how it all came together because they worked as a team and encouraged each other,” said Cooper. “They put the costumes together, wrote the play and came up with the props. They solidified their knowledge of the history at both grade levels, and they learned how to put a mini-production together, which involved teamwork. They also learned how to write a play, including stage commands.”
Sugar Bowl Academy is a college preparatory boarding and day school located within Sugar Bowl Ski Resort and serving student-athletes with a passion for Nordic, alpine, or freeride skiing.