Each week, City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley will thank a person or organization for inspiring us in our service. This week, corps member Laura Peters thanks Broadway San Jose Music Village and other members of the community for supporting her STOMP enrichment at Lee Mathson Middle School.
When corps member Nancy Adjei and I began planning a stepping and drumming enrichment for our after school program, we were excited to bring movement and musical concepts to the students we serve at Mathson Middle School. Little did we know how much further this idea would go!
A few days after the initial seed was planted, I remembered that I had seen the drum and dance performance STOMP advertised as coming to San Jose. Minutes later, I was on the Broadway San Jose website realizing that the show would be coming to the San Jose Center for the Performing Arts during the final week of our STOMP-themed enrichment!
I immediately called group sales. I was planning on applying for an Attendance, Behavior, and Course performance Grant and wanted to see if we could get a few tickets at a discounted price. Joe Noonan, our liaison at Broadway San Jose, posed the question,
“In a perfect world, how many tickets would you receive?”
I thought for a moment. I didn’t want to sound greedy, but I knew that my students deserved to go to this performance and it would be a great incentive to improve their behavior and attendance. I told Joe that in a perfect world, we could bring all of the corps members from Mathson as well as approximately 30 students.
Well, it turns out that it is a perfect world! Broadway San Jose has been able to secure 42 tickets for our corps members and students to attend STOMP this April. Students who are part of our STOMP enrichment and meet specific attendance and behavior criteria will be invited to join the Mathson City Year corps members for the traveling Broadway performance.
Once we had this ticket incentive, we began to focus on our actual enrichment. On Tuesdays and Thursdays for one hour, approximately 15-20 students meet in the cafeteria to make instruments, learn step routines, and combine their talents in preparation for a final performance.
We couldn’t have put on this enrichment without the help of Music Village in south San Jose who donated 20 pairs of drumsticks worth almost $100 in total. Our friends on the Civic Engagement Team right here at City Year San Jose allowed us to borrow paint buckets, which our kids will be using as makeshift drums. Teachers and corps members came together to donate paper towel rolls, beans and cups to be turned into rain sticks and maracas.
The STOMP enrichment has truly been a collaborative effort between City Year and our community. The students in STOMP are flourishing in their rhythmic abilities, as well as attempting to improve their own behavior and attendance. The students and corps members at Mathson sincerely appreciate all of the individuals and organizations who have helped to make this experience possible.
Laura Peters, Corps Member CYSJ