Speaking and listening are critical, first components of English Language Arts instruction. With the structure of Responsive Classroom, the social learning structure in the younger grades at Harrisburg Academy, we practice conversation and formulating questions as we also form and strengthen the student and teacher relationships in our Kindergarten learning community. We extend and enhance these speaking skills into a performance – Kindergarten Coffeehouse – for our families and friends.

Our Kindergarten Coffeehouse is a unique opportunity for our students to speak and perform in front of an audience. The children perform in a square format where they face their fellow Kindergarten students and teachers and the audience of parents and loved ones sit around the outside of the square. We weave information, songs, and chants about a familiar topic to make it easier to speak and perform. This year we taught our audience about the ABCs of our Learning Link continent of Australia!

Another component of our coffeehouse is a fine art exhibit prepared by the Kindergarten students. The exhibit shows a variety of styles, allowing the children to present and explain to their families. A really exciting lesson for the children was how much the audience enjoyed the coffeehouse and that it became easier and more fun to perform when they had such a warm and appreciative audience! The children also learned the lesson of rehearsal, handling the nerves of performing, and the pride that comes with a job well done. A special thanks to music teacher, Elizabeth Darowish for the beautiful music and exciting performance ideas and coordination and to art teacher, Tina Phillips for coordinating the beautiful artwork and exhibit!

Learn more about Harrisburg Academy on our school website.