Neighborhood Bridges and the Crossing Bridges Festival

Neighborhood Bridges, CTC’s critical literacy program working in schools across the nation, is finishing up the school year with a number of projects, including the Crossing Bridges Festival, May 5, 6, 11, and 12 from 6-7:45pm, on the UnitedHealth Group Stage.  

The Crossing Bridges Festival is a free and public showcase of student work. Third through fifth graders tackle a variety of stories from those covered all year-long with their Bridges Teaching Artist, including fairy tales, Greek myths, and modern-day heroes. Every piece of the performance is hand-crafted by the students—even the scenic elements are created in the classroom out of a mixture of recycled cardboard and fabric remnants. No reservations are required!

The other branches of the Bridges program include Early Bridges, for pre-k, which continues to innovate with a “student stories, student acting” lesson, casting early learners simultaneously in the role of writer, director, and performer in stories of their own making. Bridges’ partners at the Center for Early Education and Development at the University of Minnesota are finding all kinds of developmental benefits to a student-centric approach to acting in early learner classrooms, and it is one of the content areas where Bridges is most excited to grow.

The kindergarten program, Building Bridges, is culminating the year’s work with student performances across Twin Cities area schools, with families and friends invited to attend the celebration. These class plays are inspired by stories that the children most enjoyed from their time with a Bridges Teaching Artist, and are an excellent demonstration of Bridges philosophy in action: empowering students to become the storytellers of their own lives.