By Ruth Schowalter, Certified InterPlay Leader
Since June, InterPlayAtlanta has been visiting one of the most diverse cities in the United States—Clarkston, Georgia, on Saturdays once a month, bringing 30 minutes InterPlay’s improvisational community building tools to its market, where members of its refugee community and long time residents sell home made products and locally grown produce in the midst of festive activities (read these blogs, here and here ).
In October, as a result of funding raised in April 2015 on the national “Give InterPlay Day,” (Thank you everyone!) and the developing relationship with the Clarkston Community Center (CCC), InterPlay Atlanta was able to accept Andrea Waterstone’s invitation to participate in the Clarkston Youth Initiative.
Andrea, the Art and Education Director at the CCC, built the Clarkston Youth Initiative, which is a nine-week after school program for teenagers who voluntarily elect to attend courses three afternoons a week from Monday to Wednesday, 3:00 to 6:00 PM. In addition to the InterPlay course developed by me, “Creative Communication,” participants take a variety of other courses: computer technology, bicycle maintenance and safety, art and yoga, and gardening.
What might a nine-week InterPlay course entitle “Creative Communication” look like? Here is a partial description I crafted to explain what we would be doing:
Creative Comunication: Playing Around with What You Have to Say
In this class, you will have fun playing around with expressing what you have to say or not say while working in pairs, small or large groups, or alone. Using the improvisational system of InterPlay, you are invited to speak without preparation and to make things up. In addition to expanding your story telling abilities, you will learn other ways to communicate using movement, voice, and stillness. Whether you are shy or outgoing, you can learn how to succeed at getting your message across more effectively and enjoy the process!