The Red Hook Education Foundation provided a $12,000 grant toward the construction of an outdoor stage and classroom at Mill Road School. Construction of the stage will take place in late spring 2017.
Working from the belief that children benefit from creative play, the stage platform will invite students to collaborate on improvised skits, dances and other impromptu performances. Within this safe, familiar environment, they can hone performance and public speaking skills. Tiered seating opposite the stage will make performances accessible to all members of the school community.
In addition, the stage will become an “outdoor classroom” for teachers to use when they wish to bring students outside for a particular lesson, or to offer an alternative-learning environment. The space will be ideal for outdoor presentations such those involving animals, drumming or “messy” activities that don’t lend themselves to traditional classrooms.
The stage will be located against the tree line separating the playgrounds from the soccer fields behind the school, where the picnic tables are now located. A natural arc created by a few birch trees will form the backdrop of the stage.
This is a project that has been studied and reviewed for several years and has won the enthusiastic approval of parents and administrators alike.