Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Showcases and Celebrations

Do you remember as a youth participating in a showcase event at your school?  Do you remember being in a holiday play, singing in a chorus, playing in the band, or creating a number of props and costumes for the holiday extravaganza?  These are the memories that last with us long into our adulthood. 

When I think back to my school experience one of my fondest memories is of singing a Christmas song in the school play when I was in Kindergarten.  I can still see the face of the eighth grade boy who played the role of “my dad” in the play and saw to it that during rehearsal lunches I had food.  He also accepted responsibility for being sure I was where I needed to be during the play and during rehearsals and on the night of the performance picked me up and sat me down on the top of the piano (something no one would allow today) to sing my song!  Along with that memory I can recall the kindness of the older youth and also how special they made me feel.  They were more than happy to “take care of me” which helped to teach me the importance of cross-age support and being held in positive regard.  I experienced being part of a team for probably the first time, and I knew that we were all in this together.  This experience has influenced the way I see the world in a positive manner.  You may wonder how important this type of experience really is.  Let me share that it’s been sixty years since I was in Kindergarten, and the memory is still vivid and clear and acts as a foundation for my belief in the importance of providing youth with a variety of experiences during the school years.

So what memories will you be helping youth create this year in your program?  Will you work on a gala or a quiet celebration?  Will you showcase the youth to one another, to the school day, to the families?  Will you find a way for all youth to participate or will you showcase the talents and skills of a few?  No matter what you choose remember that you are creating a memory that participants will incorporate into his/her world view. 

The goal is to see that the memories are positive and build the self-confidence and self-efficacy of the youth.

For more information check out this C4K Lesson for Site Coordinators and view Showcasing Students.  This is one of over 400 teaching videos for frontline staff.  Let us know what you think by contacting us at

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