Midterm Experiences Capture Students’ Interests (Part 3)

Wheatley’s Midterm Experience is designed to give our 9th and 10th grade students hands-on workshops to provide insight into how English can be used in future endeavors. On Tuesday, over the course of two hours, students worked with acclaimed authors, poets, comedians and creative artists in activities designed to engage students in a way that can be challenging during the regular school day.

The Midterm experience occurs thanks to the dedication of our Secondary English Chair, Mr. Steve Collier, our English teachers, Mrs. Jo Beth Roberts and the very generous funding of the Wheatley PTO.

Some previous posts (here and here) described some of the workshops presented on Tuesday. Here are a few more:

Celebrity Interviewing
Jen Calonita (author, I’m With the BandFlunkedSecrets of My Hollywood Life, Belles)

This workshop was designed for students who dream of someday having a job where they can talk and write about Hollywood all day long — that’s right…an entertainment journalist! In this class, students worked with former entertainment magazine editor and young adult book author Jen Calonita to learn what it takes to conduct a celebrity interview from research to published article. By the end of the first hour of the workshop, students were ready to conduct (via skype) an actual celebrity interview! The hour-long interview was conducted with comedian  Piff the Magic Dragon. Students had an opportunity to ask Piff the questions they had prepared, with the interview serving as the foundation for an article for the Wheatley Wildcat.


Stand Up Comedy
by Jay Nog (Stand up comic and writer for MTV2’s Guy Code)

What does it take to become a stand up comedian? During this workshop, Jay Nog shared some experiences and projects he has worked on, and shared with students his career path. He discussed different stand-up styles and trends in comedy before getting students ready to write some jokes! Participants learned some of the strategies of writing effective jokes and then had an opportunity to perform the jokes they had written!


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