Henderson was on a sugar high this week. We had to raise our voices a few times when some of the 7th grade girls decided it would be funny to tip over each others chairs. It took longer than usual to get them to quiet down and the girls also did not want to play the games such as where the wind blows. I was very frustrated because usually the older girls in the group are leaders, but last week I was thankful for our precious and well-behaved 5th grade boys.The boys are the ones on good behavior, they read lines when we ask them too and they are even getting excited about staging and costumes. The group complained about needing more snacks so Page and I will be working on that for next week! Once we sat them down they finally went through the lines and Tiffany agreed to read for Viola, which was a huge success. I told her that she can even keep her crown on while she is Cesario if it makes her feel better, which she agreed with. The rest of the rehearsal proceeded as usual and we talked more about the show date and what it will entail. Before we knew it rehearsal was over and the kids ran back to the cafeteria for their closing activity.

This week the kids started acting up, more than they usually do. I think we had this coming because nothing went wrong for the weeks leading up to this one. One of the problems we ran into is that we ran out of games to play with them because some of them are just not interested at all in the games we decide to play with them; they seem to think they are too cool for those games. Another issue we ran into is that the handful of girls who are in our group are in seventh grade and act rather immaturely during practice. They like to be loud and boisterous and run around and hit each other. Surprisingly, the boys we have in our group are so well-behaved and absolutely adorable. This shocked me because I went into this project thinking that we would run into more problems with the boys than with the girls. Once we got their attention we decided to run through the script with all of the kids, and not break into multiple groups, because we had such a small group that day. It went really well and we found that some of the boys wanted to take on multiple parts. I was really happy when some of the kids asked if they could take their scripts home to practice. Even though it feels like it has taken a few weeks for them to get excited about this I think they are finally realizing how cool it is that they are putting on a Shakespeare play!

Our third week with the kids went really well. We decided to split into multiple groups so that there was a limited amount of time when the kids are sitting around doing nothing. We had one group of kids rehearse their lines while the other group worked on the set. We have found that we have a rather large group of kids who do not want to speak in the play at all and would rather work on the set and costumes. It was hard at first to work towards what they wanted but we ended up finding a way to let them work on the set and costumes. We had them design what they wanted the ship to look like and Maren showed them the stage at the Henderson location so that they had an idea of what they were working with.

On the fourth week, we worked again in the smaller groups. This week we had a huge group of kids, much larger than we usually get. I think they needed a place for some of the kids so they just gave them to us. Fortunately, the majority of the kids had an interest in the play and wanted to have a part in it. It was hard to adjust to the large number of kids but I think we managed it well. At the end of our time with the kids we did “trick or treating” and Maren, Sarah and myself spread out in the room and allowed the kids to trick or treat for candy we gave them.