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Classroom Plays for Career Studies


   * Written by L.E. McCullough, Ph.D.

   * ISBN: 1-57525-140-X

   * Retail List Price: $17.00 (check online retailers for other prices)


Plays of People at Work responds to children's number one query: "What do I want to be when I grow up?" These 12 original plays follow a quartet of bright, inquisitive grade schoolers – Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton – as they visit friends and family at real-life work sites.

Plays of People at Work shows age-appropriate career situations involving contemporary, gender-neutral occupations:


    * Newspaper Reporter

    * Tugboat Captain

    * Animal Rescue Agent

    * Emergency Medical Technician

    * Television Director

    * Park Ranger

    * Brick Mason

    * Crime Lab Technician

    * Robotics Engineer

    * Piano Tuner

    * Pastry Chef

    * Legal Aid Lawyer


Each play has an introduction with details about the nature of the work, educational and training requirements and where to find more information about the occupation, as well as helpful notes for staging, costuming and music. Plays of People at Work is perfect for helping children turn play time into learning time!


1. Monster in the Basement (Animal Rescue Agent). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton watch animal rescue agents Art Dawson and Sandi Barr rescue a wayward raccoon from the basement of Mr. and Mrs. Cogan.

2. The Big Scoop (Newspaper Reporter). While Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton wait after school to meet Janice's stepmother for ice cream, a huge wind storm blows through downtown. The kids help Mrs. Brown gather material for her newspaper article on the storm. . . while also helping solve a traffic crime!


3. Roll 'em Up, Roll 'em Up! (Pastry Chef). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton visit Steve's Uncle Leo, a pastry chef, at his bakery; they learn how bread is made and get to make their own cake icing. Turns out, somebody has a birthday, and somebody else has planned a big birthday surprise!


4. Call of the Wild (Park Ranger). Park ranger Gina Boyd gives Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton a tour of Tahtokah State Park; they learn about ecology, wildlife preservation and help rescue two lost hikers.


5. Opening Night at the Opera, er, Opry (Piano Tuner). A few hours before a concert, piano tuner Brenda Foy gives Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton a quick lesson in how the piano is made and tuned; suddenly, classical soprano Madame Fifi and country singer Dolly Mae Cottonwood arrive, both thinking they've booked the hall for the night! A musical diva duel ensues until the kids suggest a way for both singers to have their piano and play it, too.


6. It's an Emergency! (Emergency Medical Technician). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton visit an EMS Dispatch Center, where technicians Barbara Nielsen and Walter Carillo discuss the basic of EMS service. Suddenly, a call for help comes in - a woman has fallen - and the kids see the EMS crew on the job.


7. Robots Are Everywhere (Robotics Engineer). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton visit a robotics engineering lab and learn how robots are designed. They even get to some robots "in action" - including Fetch, a Retrieval Robot who seems to have taken a liking to Burton's baseball cap!


8. Heave Away, Haul Away! (Tugboat Captain). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton sail across the harbor on a real working tugboat and watch the crew push a sand barge to its dock. As they float along, they relive the history of the waterway from Native Americans and Pirates to Voyageurs, Pioneers and 49ers. A musical gala featuring folk songs and sea shanties Bound for South Australia, The Flying Cloud, Ojibway Canoe Song, Dans Les Chantiers Nous Hivernerons, Shenandoah, Sacramento, When Johnny Comes Marching Home.


9. The Case of the Purple Pen (Crime Lab Technician). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton tour a police crime lab, examine actual analysis instruments and investigate clues related to the theft of Burton’s bicycle that morning. Exactly what are those red streaks on that purple pen found where the bike had been parked? Whose pen is it, anyway? The answer to this mystery will shock you!


10. See You in Court! (Legal Aid Lawyer). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton go to court and watch lawyer Roberta Hale (Burton's cousin) defend her client against the Fun-O-Rama Toy Company, which knowingly manufactured a defective version of the Wacky Jacky Hackysacky Doll. In the end, justice is not blind ... but needs a new pair of glasses.


11. Yankee Doodle Had a Brick (Brick Mason). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton watch Mr. Hart (Janice's father) and his bricklaying crew install a replica of an 18th-century brick sidewalk in the garden of the historical society museum. The Mayor and two museum interpreters - Yellow Thrush and Isaac Holcomb, two of the town founders - join in for a dedication ceremony.


12. Lights, Camera, Traction! (Television News Director). Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton go behind the scenes of a real television studio for a live broadcast of The Willy Bear Show. Guided by director Sara Whittaker, the kids see the crew prepare set, costumes, lights, sound, makeup and – finally – the star of the show himself, Mr. Willy Bear!


13. Reach for the Stars (Epilogue). With their teachers Ms. Vera and Mr. Brooks, Janice, Steve, Paula and Burton reflect upon the work sites they've visited and the occupations they've seen. They discuss the things they liked best about seeing people at work, what kind of skills a person needs to be a good worker and what ways people find to maintain pleasure and fulfillment in their work. The session concludes with everyone singing a song the kids have composed – Reach for the Stars.

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