Neighborhood Bridges Peace Plays

This month, Neighborhood Bridges students will share messages of peace throughout the metro as they perform “Peace Plays” for their school communities and families. Neighborhood Bridges is Children’s Theatre Company’s (CTC) nationally recognized critical literacy program that embodies the mission and values to educate, challenge and inspire by empowering young people to become animators of their own lives. Through storytelling, writing, and acting, students have been exploring and discussing the causes of war and imagining possibilities for peace through deep listening, respect, collaboration and understanding.

Core to the Bridges program is responding to the changing conditions of our world. This festival of student-created work began as a response to the tragedy of 9/11 as a way for students to actively participate in peace-inspiring justice. It has been performed every year for the last 15 years.

By utilizing stories about war, conflict and peace, we aim to empower students to understand the causes of war and to resolve conflicts. We hope that they can develop their self-confidence and thinking so that they will grasp why disputes arise and how they can resolve them in a peaceful and humane way. By using metaphors that can be applied to the conflicts surrounding their lives, we want to open the eyes of our students to all the conditions that contribute to war and engender hope that they can play some sort of role to preventing wars through non-violent action.

Twenty-seven public school classrooms from four school districts will share their original work on the topic of nonviolent conflict resolution—that’s over 675 students using their voices to spread the message of peace throughout their communities! Neighborhood Bridges is CTC’s nationally-accredited critical literacy program that has been replicated in 14 cities across the nation with pilot programs in Uruguay, Paraguay, and Jamaica. Learn more about the Neighborhood Bridges program here.

Participating Neighborhood Bridges School list:
Adams Spanish Immersion Magnet (St. Paul)
Anishinabe Academy (South Minneapolis)
Cityview Community School (North Minneapolis)
Evergreen Park World Cultures Community School (Brooklyn Center)
Garlough Environmental Magnet (West St. Paul)
Hillcrest Community School (Bloomington)
Jefferson Community School (South Minneapolis)
Lincoln Elementary School for the Arts (Anoka)
Lucy Craft Laney Community School (North Minneapolis)
Lyndale Community School (South Minneapolis)
Marcy Open School (Northeast Minneapolis)
Mississippi Creative Arts Magnet (St. Paul)