Recently at Georgia Elementary & Middle School, puppeteer and GEMS alumni Sarah Frechette, along with artist Jason Thibodeaux conducted an artist-in-residency with 3rd & 4th graders.


Sarah and Jason showed the students how to use light to manipulate depth and space by combining hand-cut shadow puppets with flashlights. This is a modern technique that creates a style of shadow that flows like film and brings practical application to the students studies on light.


In just one week the 6 classes were introduced to their visual storyboard stories, cut unique hand-drawn illustrations into shadow puppets, rigged the puppets using rods and foam, added colorful acetate to their designs, and held a rehearsal in the classrooms.


On the last day of the residency titled Shadows Rock 2016: Shadow Showdown the students presented their final shadow puppet shows in the GEMS small gym. As the shadows shape shifted across the shadow screen GEMS 1st-4th graders watched stories covering such topics as Practice Makes Perfect, Shadows & Light, Life Cycles, Vermont Business & Industry, Me on the Map, and Famous Vermonters!


Combining science, math, history and ideas of working hard & friendship into the show give the shadows a purpose and allow the students to share what they have been learning in the classroom this year.


Sarah Frechette travels around the U.S and the world with her original puppets and shows ( Jason Thibodeaux just finished painting puppets at the stop-motion animation studio LAIKA for the feature films Coraline, ParaNorman, Box Trolls and Kubo.

Target 1: Personalized Learning involving collaborative inquiry, problem solving and creative learning opportunities.

Action Step:  Students participate in learning opportunities that promote collaborative inquiry, problem solving, and creativity for students.

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