The Miller College Children’s Literature Project
In September of 2009, Miller College invited area educators to take a chance and participate in the first annual Miller College Children’s Literature Project (CLP). Over 50 teachers and nearly 1,000 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students joined in as we embarked on a unique book writing and illustration experience. The Project included Michigan author and illustrator David Small and wife and author, Sarah Stewart. Small’s art was brought to Battle Creek from the NCCIL in Texas and was on display, alongside the students’ book illustrations, at the Art Center of Battle Creek throughout February, 2010. A book signing with David and Sarah and several other local authors was held at the College in March, and the Project concluded with an awards dinner and presentation by Small and Stewart, held at the Holiday Inn in Battle Creek. Every seat in the house was filled with students, families, teachers, principals and interested community members. The Project was a tremendous success and the College decided then to continue this event every year!
In 2010 the Children’s Theater Project was introduced. The Theater Project provided an incredible opportunity for high school students to explore a career as a playwright, set designer, costume designer, play director, and much more. Additionally, students had the opportunity to attend workshops at Miller College and work one-on-one with professionals in the field, to turn their scripts into actual play productions. Students were involved in the logistics of the community casting call, character selection, and rehearsals. This was an opportunity to explore every aspect involved in producing a theatrical play.
The following outcomes resulted from the Children’s Literature and Theater Project.
- Area students were exposed to additional career options and had free reign to explore those possibilities within themselves.
- This Project gave residents the opportunity to celebrate and acknowledge the importance of reading, writing, and the arts in the development of their children.
- This Project l also served as a catalyst for a yearly community collaborative that strengthened learning in the community.
- The Project helped strengthen the role of Miller College in the lives of the residents and solidify its place as Calhoun County’s four-year college.
For more information on ways you can become involved with this wonderful Project, please contact Miller College 269-660-8021.