Special Thematic Program Events (These can also be experiential workshops emphasizing Exploration and Creativity)
Our workshops are always in flux as we add new ones, revise existing ones, and delete old ones.  If you have an interest in something not included here, please contact us -- We might be interested in it, too.  All of these workshops were designed because someone asked for something special.   We work to meet educational criteria and age appropriateness.  We adjust by state, but we keep national standards where applicable.


  • Act It Out / Ready, Set, Act  [Basics /  Intermediate  /  Advanced]
  • Adventures and Escapades in Greek, Roman, and Other Mythologies  [There are uncommonly common threads among the myths of many cultures. Myths often explore the great issues of “Who?” “What?” “When?” Where?” and “Why?”
    In the course of our exploration, we may even create our own myths—so bring your IMAGINATION!!
  • Alli Baba, Aladdin , and Other Arabian Nights  [Participants are offered an introductory course in Creative Drama, Simultaneous Pantomime, Storytelling, and Improvisation based on stories of the 1,001 Arabian Nights. This will be an active, hands-on set of experiences using major acting and creativity techniques. These are for students and young adults who really want to explore their sense of creativity and imagination and are willing to work within the disciplines of practical application and ensemble.  The use of the traditional Arabian Nights stories adds a special literary level as we explore and experience facets of other cultures.
  • All That Glitters [Golden Goodies!  Gold in History, Literature, and Legend -- The search & the discovery
  • American Royalty [Besides the obvious royalty of Hawaii, America has been a refuge of real and feigned royalty --  plus we have established a royalty of wealth and celebrity
  • Animals that Never Were – but Should Have Been? [From Dragons to Unicorns! Dragons, Gryphons, Chimeras, the Phoenix, Unicorns, the Hydra, and other lives of Legend and Lore -- ]
  • Dragons—Reluctant, Happy, Whimsical, and Harmful from Around the World!
    [A Creative Drama Adventure with Simultaneous Pantomime, Storytelling, and Improvisation based on stories of dragons and dragon hunters from around the world. This will be an active, hands-on set of experiences using major acting and creativity techniques. These are for students and young adults who really want to explore their sense of creativity and imagination and are willing to work within the disciplines of practical application and ensemble. The use of the traditional dragon stories from multiple ethnic expressions adds a special literary and sociological level as we explore and experience facets of other cultures.
  • Biography of a Year [e.g.  What happened in the year 1599 in History, Literature, Art, Architecture, Medicine, etc.?   How did this year help us get to be who we are?  We can approach nearly any year in recorded history for an in-depth  exploration.
  • Bits from Boccaccio [This Italian author inspired even Chaucer and Shakespeare!  His stories continue to inspire books, plays, and movies.]
  • Book It!  Bookies Unite!  [Authorship, Books, and Libraries through History (including the concepts of the “Library at Alexandria” and the encyclopedic movement.]  The mind-boggling, amazing and frequently dangerous challenge of     preserving the written word through history  (now also extended to   the spoken word and visual records – including the work of the Smithsonian, the Library of Congress, and even the American Film Institute!)
  • Books ALIVE!!!  [Books and other literacy projects can be inspiring, colorful, and animated.  Participants will  create “something from nothing,” as we explore making  books and other extraordinary projects.  Imagination and creativity can make a book report a thing of magical invitation!]
  • Castles and Knights and Chivalry
  • The Cat’s Meow!  -- Cats in History and Literature [The Earlys are “Cat Story Authorities” in having been owned by a number of cats through the years who certified to them that all the tales about cats – their immense intelligence – their knack for getting out of scrapes and messes – being the only innocent ones in the room after great mayhem and havoc have occurred (actually, most cats will insist they weren’t even there! -- their enmity with dogs and mice (with good reason, unfortunately!) – their positions of dignity and respect (even being objects of worship in certain cultures historically) – their unsurpassed intelligence (ask any cat) – and their capacity to amuse humans for hours on end with silly (!) antics and loving purrs – all these and a bit more will be a part of the “Cats” storytelling and creative drama event.]  It will be a catastrophe of cataclysmic proportions if you don’t catch this event.  Some say cats once ruled the world. In the mythos of cat lore, many suggest the world would be simpler and more orderly if they still ruled the world. Come join us for an exploration of Cat-Tales from Around the World. We will be sharing in some interesting activities as the “Tales Come Alive.”
  • Character Building [Completion of Tasks / Commitment  /  Working for Excellence ]
  • Chaucer’s Choicest [Chaucer’s characters speak up.]   1.) A contemporary language discovery of the Canterbury Tales;  2.) Parliament of Fowls, etc.
  • Constituting a Country [ Stories of the early founders and their struggles to establish a foothold.] A fascinating look at the men and women helped shape this country -- their successes and failures!
    What to do with the original people who were already here!   Ben Franklin and “Doubting our own infallibility.”
  • Creative Drama [Looking for something exciting to do? Fun, Different, Extraordinary, Exciting Experience! Skits, Props, Reader's Theater, etc. By the Way:  Pantomime, Improv, Solo work, Working together—This is a time to stretch the imagination and learn new techniques of expression while sharpening the skills you already have. You don’t have to be an actor to have fun on this adventure!!!  Tired of the same old stuff? R U Asking "To Drama or Not to Drama" Try this Creative Workshop on for size!  
     
    Did You Know That? -- The Rest of the Story!”  [We will travel through time and space as we explore a variety of adventures in World History using numerous elements of Creative Drama to investigate what happened, why – and sometimes, the “Why not?”. Scripts, sketches, puppets, improvisation – these and more will be parts of imaginative and informative adventures to discover the rest of the story.
  • Directing for the Non-Director
  • El Camino Real [ Following the King’s Highway Across the Fledgling Country.  This can be extended to the contemporary experience as we discover what has been developed along El Camino Real.  Can include:  1.) Tales of the Mission Fathers 2.) Following the Explorers: Hunters, Trappers, and Merchants 3.) From Sea to Shining Sea – Manifest Destiny
  • El Dorado, Utopia, Erehwon, and “Nowhere” Else!  [ Nowhere is Nowhere, regardless how it is spelled!  We will explore the various ideas of the realms of political justice and shared wealth from around the world.  Our search for the “ideal” place  will explore such things as Shangri la, Candide, Erehwon, Don Quixote, El Dorado, the founding of the “New World”, the various American Utopian Communities, etc.
  • First, Do No Harm [ Medicine, Doctors, and Health through history – From Hippocrates on – Magic and Medicine --    The rocky road to contemporary medicine – and it isn’t over yet!
  • The “Fabulistic” Fontaine [ Fountains of Fables: Many of the Stories we know best came to us through the French filter of Fontaine – (his modifications were often major)]
  • Fairy Tales on Trial
  • Feelin’ Good about the Skin I’m In
  • Flexing Your Voice [Voice workshop – singing, speaking, projecting, breath control, care of the voice, types of vocal expression – all sorts of exercises, experiences, and tips!  The workshops are designed for Fifth Grade youth through Adult.  We will also be touching on such things as dialects and accents, word sounds, enunciation, vocal characterization, uses and misuses of microphones, choral reading, listening to each other, team work in performance, varieties in tempo, pitch, volume, etc.
  • Friends, Folklore, and Fantasy [Friends and Partners and Sidekicks] Friendships through History and Legend (real people and really real people)
  • Goblins and Ghosties and Things that Go Bump in the Night
  • Stories to grow goosebumps – a multi-cultural experience
  • Grammar on the Cross-Ties
  • Hauntingly Hawthorne -- From ribbons to poison -- Bright colors – deep purple
  • History per Mother Goose [ Nursery rhymes seem to have an identifiable root in history] What the rhyme says – and the “who, what, when, where, why” that are being made fun of or reduced to rhyme to handle the fear of! [Annotated and expanded Mother Goose]
  • Improv Extravaganza [ Basic exercises in developing improve skills ]  Moments and Improv Scene experiences [solo & team]  Develop skills of observation, concentration, imagination, team work
  • Love Me Tender, Love Me True [ Fabulous Lovers through History, Songs,  Folklore, Legends…  Some Star-Crossed, some not!  Some have changed history!  Wars have been fought, Peace Arranged, Whole Cultures Changed – and all through a love affair!
  • Manifest Destiny [This land is my land! This land is our land, from California to the New York Island!] A voyage of discovery in story and song.
  • Mark This, Marco Polo! [ How the journeys and writings of Marco Polo changed our world view – made the world bigger, and, and wow!]
  • How TALL a Tale Can You Tell/Write? 
  • Making and Using Shadow Puppets [Shadows can tell a story, just ask anyone from the Orient where shadow puppet concerts are a major part of life!  Participants will select stories to present and will make their shadow puppets and will work on presenting their stories to each other. 
  • Making Friends of Your Mic [What is that awful screech when mics are too close to speakers?  How do I recognize the microphone in front of me—how to make the best use of it and how to understand why mics are so different in purpose, style, and use. A basic awareness of sound: transmission, reception, amplification, and delivery.  What goes in is basically what comes out!  
     
    Mathemagical Adventure  [We will explore numbers and all types of “MATH” during our adventure.]  Don’t let math be a drudgery, it can be enjoyable – a real fun learning adventure.  Variety of experiences for age and grade level appropriateness.  
  • The how, what, when, where, and why of movement on stage. [From a variety of perspectives] Creating pictures --
    Justifying movement -- Honest and effective energy.
  • Music – Voice – Rhythmic Movement (Dance) – Peter and the Wolf (Russia) /  Sleeping Beauty (Russia)
    Hansel and Gretel (German) In general : Themes from Musicals, Operas, Movies based on Books  (explores from an        Arts & Humanities perspective)
  • Puppetry  /  Puppet Mania [Puppets Here! Puppets There! Puppets Everywhere! Dive in with us as we explore an ocean of puppet possibilities. You will learn some valuable puppet lessons. Bring your hands ready to work!!!  (Hand and String Puppets)
  • Park It Here! [ Stories, traditions, and discoveries that led to the founding of our national and regional parks.]
    The heritage of our parks (natural and cultural)
  • Pilgrims, Puritans, and Cavaliers [The Early American Experience from Diaries, Journals, Letters, Poetry, Music, and Historic Conjecture.]
  • Poe You, Poe Me, Poe Us! [Stories, Poetry, and the Life of Edger Allen Poe] 
                Poe’s People /  Primly Poe ---    Poe-etic Justice
                Properly Poe,  Being “Poe-litically” Correct
  • Reader’s Theatre []Scripts from multiple cultures
  • Reading Poetry Aloud [Reading aloud for meaning, emphasis, control, projecting emotion, etc.] Why do we sometimes gallop, sometimes, glide, and sometime read against the rhythm!
  • Riddle Me This!!! [The uses of the Riddle as a Teaching/Learning Tool from Earliest Days to Now ]  From nursery to saving a nation -- Thinking outside the box -- Making connections
  • Shakin’ and Music Makin’ 
  • Storytelling
  • Shakin’ Up Shakespeare [ Having Fun with the Bard! ] The stories behind the plays, the people, the events. 
    Reading Shakespeare aloud for meaning, the comedy, the drama, the emotion, the effect...Shakespeare Lives!!!  Borrowings from the Bard!
  • S.T.E.M. the Tide! [An exciting and generally surprising Journey of Discovery and Exploration into Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.]  These are wonderful worlds claimed to be drastically lacking in much of the American Experience – Let’s remedy that as we build up a special excitement for these areas of study that are far from dry!
  • Stories for a Starry Night [Things are lookin’ up!]  Stories, Legends, Folklore, Art, Music, and Science as we explore how we humans have looked up to the skies and imagined what all those sparks of light were about.
  • Tales from the Wayside Inn [ The fact and fantasy behind the eclectic combination of verses created by Longfellow] (from Vikings to “One if by land and two if by sea!”) Longfellow’s Legacy to the American Landscape
  • Tales of King Arthur – [In Days of Old When Knights Were Bold] That’s right, My Lord and My lady—you are invited to embark with us on a journey to the days of chivalry when knighthood was in flower!!! From the French tales of Chrétien de Troyes to Malory to Contemporary Retellings including T. H. White and other authors.  We will visit 

  • The Not So Dark Middle Ages.  Our minds need as reset when we understand the amazingly complex  things that were happening at the very time some people say were the “Dark Ages"  [Medicine, Economics, Politics, Science, Technology, Architecture, etc.]
  • This Train Is Bound for Glory [The experiences of the Underground Railroad in 19th Century America] Stories, People, History, and Geography with music and drama
  • Time and a Half Times Time [Legends, Stories, Folklore, Traditions, and Facts about Time and the study  of time and the growing awareness of time --  A relatively timely exploration
  • Traits of a Leader [ Stories of people looked upon as good leaders and not so good leaders] Basic traits of a good leader to be considered for today, too Leadership is more than money and power.