Theatre cast
Bushwick Starr theatre eco-play cast and Superhero Clubhouse participating students. (Photo credit: Bushwick Starr Facebook page)

Environmental education takes center stage during the annual Big Green Theater Festival in Brooklyn, New York.

This week of performances is the culmination of a three-month program. It’s taught by a collective of artists and scientists called the Superhero Clubhouse.


Felix: “We work with fourth and fifth graders that either express interest or they’re recommended by their teachers. From January to March, students learn about environmental topics with guest experts and scientists, and then we help guide them in writing original eco-plays.”

That’s lead artist and co-teacher Vanessa Felix. She says the students study and write about topics such as how climate change affects sea-level rise, superstorms, migrating species, and more.

Then the students’ scripts are selected and performed publicly by actors at the Bushwick Starr, a professional theater company.*

Felix: “By giving the kids a platform for their words and for their thoughts and creativity, it allows them to walk away with more self-esteem. And I think they take away an awareness of the nature in their backyards and also of the environment on a bigger scale. So many times, they tell us how their habits at home have changed because of what they learned, and really we couldn’t ask for anything better than that.”

Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media.

*Correction 10/26/17: This sentence has been updated to reflect the fact that all of the students’ plays are performed.

Eileen Mignoni is a South Florida-based visual journalist who has been working on stories about science, the environment, and energy for nearly 10 years. In addition to her work at Yale Climate Connections,...