Bache Martin’s Principal Evette Duperon, WST Director of Education Tom Quinn, School Superintendent Dr. William Hite and WST Artistic Director Bernard Havard
Walnut Street Theatre's Adopt-A-School program creates a special three-year partnership with a K-8 Philadelphia Center City public school. It creates long term, meaningful partnerships with individual schools to nurture the direct links between Walnut Street Theatre and its surrounding community. During our three-year stay at the host school, students and faculty members receive many unique opportunities to use Walnut Street Theatre's resources, including in-school performances and workshops. The Adopt-A-School program is individually designed to meet the Arts Education needs of the host school in creating theatre curriculum, improving students' dramatic skills and guiding teachers through every aspect of producing a theatre performance. We seek to support education reform by improving the school environment through enriching the school community.
Our Current Adoption
We are in year 1 of a 5 year partnership with Bache-Martin School and were honored to host Superintendent of Philadelphia Schools Dr. William Hite at our adoption kick-off in the fall of 2012. The Bache-Martin School is located in the historic Fairmount section of Philadelphia. The school serves students in grades K-8 and Bache-Martin supports project based learning in their educational programming which with the help of the Walnut Street Teaching Artists will incorporate arts-integration more fully into their curriculum.
Programming for year 1 will include:
- The formation of a drama club open to the students in 3rd-5th grade
- 6-week units for all grades using theatre as a tool to “bring literature to life.”
- 2 week show units to prepare students for a field trip to the Walnut Street Theatre to see our annual production of A Christmas Carol
- Students will attend performances of A Christmas Carol and our other Kid Series shows
- Performances of Once Upon a Wolf, Freedom Riders, Only 13, Boy who Cried Bully, and The Adventures of Nick Nutrition and His Dog Fiber by our Touring Outreach Company
- Scholarships for selected students to the Theatre School and Camp Walnut
- Collaboration with the Home and School Association.
Comments from Past Adoptions
Teachers report that WST "exceeded their expectations" and are "thrilled" and "grateful for the adoption." One teacher wrote, "The only two questions my kids consistently ask are: "is it pretzel day" or "is there drama club today?" At the final drama club performance a teacher commented, "In the ten years I have been here, I have never seen this many parents in our school!", and another teacher remarked, "I've never heard children sing at school before."
Alumni Schools of the Adopt-A-School program include: Samuel S. Fels High School, Girard Academic Music Program, General George A. McCall School, William M. Meredith School and Chester A. Arthur School. Mini-adoptions have occurred at G.W. Pepper Middle School and A.M.Y. at James Martin.
For more information about these programs, contact the Walnut Street Theatre Education Department at 215-574-3550, x511 or email us.