Madame Tussaud's wax museum has some major competition, in the form of Jefferson Middle School sixth-graders.
Friday, Team Challenge presented A Wax Museum of Music Genres throughout the day. The roughly 40 students dressed up to represent popular folk, country, rock/pop, salsa, opera, classical, jazz and swing artists, as well as composers.
Gina Hess, math teacher for Team Challenge, said that the teachers choose a different theme each year when planning the wax museum.
Students portray musicians of the past throughout the day Friday for Jefferson Middle School’s wax museum.
P-J photo by Liz Skoczylas
"Last year, we had a literary theme. We try to alternate between serious and more fun-loving," Ms. Hess said.
The students have spent about five weeks researching the character that was assigned to them by their teachers, and then writing about the character. Ms. Hess said that they also practiced becoming wax figures.
"We've been practicing for about a month. We were working on building up to staying still for 15 minutes," Ms. Hess said.
The Team Challenge students held eight different performances in the school's auditorium Friday. Each performance lasted for 15 minutes, and allowed other students in the school, as well as parents and community members, the opportunity to learn about the musical figures.
From becoming wax figures, the students are provided many valuable learning opportunities. Ms. Hess said they learn proper research techniques, and hone their writing techniques.
"They also learn self-discipline. It's not that easy to stand still for 15 minutes at a time," Ms. Hess said.
Costumes that the students wore for their wax museum were also researched by the students. After looking into the personal style of their character, some of the outfits were provided by the school, others by teachers, and still others by the students' parents.
Teachers from Team Challenge tried to represent each genre as best they could with musical icons, in order to provide their students with a different musical perspective.
"I don't think a lot of kids realize what's out there, in terms of music," Ms. Hess said.