'The Little Mermaid Jr.' Reaches Beyond the Stage

'The Little Mermaid Jr.' Reaches Beyond the Stage
Posted on 10/18/2019
This is the image for the news article titled 'The Little Mermaid Jr.' Reaches Beyond the Stage

students making props from recycled materialsTeaching Lessons in Community Service, Recycling and Art

Who knew that pool noodles, straws and bottle caps could be transformed into seahorses and colorful underwater plants?

The beautiful sets in Lakota East’s upcoming ‘The Little Mermaid Jr.’ were created from these seemingly ordinary recyclable materials.

“We always try to tie in community service with our first show of the year,” said East theater director Kristen Hoch. ‘The Little Mermaid Jr.’ is entirely student-produced, with over 100 students involved in the play, both on and off stage.”

“To make a statement about ocean cleanup, we decided to make a bunch of our sets and props out of recycled materials,” said East’s Kelly Croy, one of the service project directors. “We’ve run collections around the community to collect bottle caps, pool noodles, cardboard and plastic bags.” Out of these recyclable materials, the theater students created works of art for their underwater scenery.

East’s Acting III class even took the recycling message on the road, making a field trip to VanGorden Elementary to speak with fourth grade classes studying recycling. “Not only did we want to bring awareness to the issue of ocean pollution, but we wanted to add a little fun and involve the fourth-graders in our show,” said East senior Kaci Lovejoy, co-service project director.

After a short lesson on ocean pollution, the fourth-graders were invited to decorate cardboard fish using bottle caps and straws. Their colorful creations are featured in the set for ‘The Little Mermaid Jr.’.

“The project was a great lead-in to our study on ecosystems and how humans impact them, both good and bad,” said VanGorden teacher Kelly Hall.

Caitlin Darlington echoed the thoughts of many of her classmates. “As I did the project, I was thinking about how we could be saving the lives of many fish and many animals that may be in danger because they are eating plastic.”

East has invited 1900 students from Lakota elementary and junior high schools to attend special performances of the play during the school day on Oct. 22 and 28.

Tickets are also on sale now for the community performances; all tickets are just $10. Visit www.seatyourself.biz/lakotaeasthigh to purchase your tickets to this classic Disney production that takes a look at the sacrifices we all make for love and acceptance.