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TCSD announces after school bilingual theater club at Munger Mountain Elementary


JACKSON, Wyo. (KIFI) - Students in the After the Bell club at Munger Mountain Elementary School (MMES) are getting their theater on. 

TCSD is offering Play Shop for grades K-2 in collaboration with Nanci Turner Steveson and Off Square Theater and On Stage! For students in grades 3-5 with teachers, Brit Hoyt and Carmen Vallardes 

In addition to the weekly program that started Sept. 12 and runs through Oct. 24 from Missoula Children’s Theater will provide the Munger Mountain Residency: Octo. 9-14, 2023 with a performance on Saturday, Oct. 14, 2023 at 5:30 p.m. 

Why theater? 

Participation in theater improves reading comprehension, verbal and non-verbal communication skills and increases motivation. Research also finds that students involved in theater programs have a higher self-concept as well as higher levels of empathy for and acceptance of others. Finally, improvisation contributes to improved reading achievement and attitude toward academics in disadvantaged students. 


Missoula Children’s Theater comes to Jackson annually to collaborate with Off Square Theater to offer an introductory theater experience to children, K-12. I met with Off Square last spring and discussed their concerns about the lack of diversity in their casts – for MCT as well as in general. We decided to host theater clubs at Munger this fall and bring MCT to Munger for a weeklong residency, including workshops for all 3-5th grade students as a way to introduce Hispanic children and families to community theater. 

Many After the Bell clubs across the district are serving an introductory or feeder role for community organizations such as Off Square Theater, The Art Association, Wyoming Stargazers and Jackson Hole Youth Soccer. Clubs provide a starting point in a familiar space at no charge. Collaborating staff are also able to assist interested families in pursuing further participation and navigating the scholarship and registration processes.

Article Topic Follows: Education

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