May 18, 2001
To Whom It May Concern:
For the past two years, I have had the pleasure of offering
Mighty Action Racket Theatre Workshops to the children who frequent
my public library located on Manhattan’s Lower East Side/Alphabet
City. While considered an “at risk” population,
the children who use this Library often are inspired to further
research subjects of interest due to the programs provided.
I must admit that, after 15 years of library work, I almost
fell off my chair when a child requested a book on “tableau
vivant,” a theater exercise explored during one of the
four session workshops led by Ms. Joanie Fritz Zosike and Ms.
Lois Kagan Mingus.
Mighty Action Racket Workshops can be limited to one session
or extended through a period of four weeks. While both have
had great success at The Hamilton Fish Park Branch, I was quite
surprised to observe the sustained interest of kids and their
siblings participating in the 4-session series during the deep
summer. Not only were children, ages 5-12, encouraged to participate,
their elder siblings responsible for their care during the day
willingly joined in. Ms. Kagan Mingus and Ms. Fritz Zosike displayed
great flexibility incorporating different family members at
each weekly meeting.
Another feature of the Mighty Action Workshops that I would
like to praise is its literary component. Kids plan, write,
revise, rehearse and act out their own “plays” in
the workshops employing academic skills without thinking of
the theater exercises as homework. Former participants, who
have now graduated into the Young Adult section of the Library,
continue to request these programs, asking for its leaders by
I would also like to record that I practice what I preach/write.
The Office of Children’s Services of The New York Public
Library has approved another four week session of Mighty Action
Racket scheduled for this summer, 2001. In addition, I’ve
booked Mighty Story Action Time and a Mighty Action Racket Theatre
Workshop for younger kids, ages 4-7, for this upcoming summer.
|Jayne A. Pierce
Supervising Branch/Children’s Librarian