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Drama & Public Speaking

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The art of drama builds confidence and poise, flexibility and collaboration, and provides a meaningful platform for developing empathy, understanding, and imagination. Student performances begin with both creative role-play as well as theatrical performances in Kindergarten, and progress throughout the curriculum teaching various approaches to drama in grades 5-8 such as pantomime, improvisation, and stage acting.

Grade Level Performances

  • Kindergarten: Kindergartners present two musical/theatrical plays per year, which are adapted from popular children's novels by Peck Kindergarten teachers. All students have roles in the plays. 
  • Winter Musical: In Gr. 5-8, students may choose to join the Winter Musical in lieu of a winter sport—a full-scale musical performance in which students not only perform, but also act as stage crew, and assist with other production elements. Past performances include Willy Wonka Jr., Annie Jr., and The Music Man, Jr.
  • Eighth-Grade Play: Eighth-grade drama students present a theatrical play each spring, which is often written or adapted directly by the students themselves. Students are involved in all aspects of production, from set design to lighting, to tech, to choreography, to marketing and promotion. Past performances include Once Upon a High School, Young Sherlock, and student-written productions. 

Public Speaking

Encouraging an innate comfort and affinity for public speaking during childhood puts students in a position to become natural leaders and confident decision-makers as adults.  

At Peck, opportunities to practice and strengthen this critical life skill are woven throughout the full K-8 experience.  Kindergarten students learn to present themselves confidently during musical, language, and literary performances.  Every other week, students in grades 1-4 share their written works during Lower School assembly.  And in the Upper School, students are encouraged to share their voices both in and out of the classroom.

In sixth grade, students take a public speaking course to learn the particulars of rhetoric, debate, and presentation.  In their culminating year at Peck, eighth graders participate in the timeless tradition of the eighth-grade speech—wherein each student prepares a thoughtful 5-7 minute narrative speech about something meaningful in their lives.  The speeches are delivered during Upper School assemblies, or during all-school assemblies.

List of 1 news stories.

  • Course Spotlight: Sixth Grade Public Speaking

    For sixth-graders at Peck, their public speaking class isn’t just about learning how to stand in front of a crowd and deliver a speech. It’s become much more than that—teaching students how to speak with both conviction and compassion, to see issues from different angles, and to express their own unique perspectives.

    Just ask Isabella DiPasquale, an eighth grader serving as an officer of the Student Council. The lessons learned from this yearlong course have spilled over into other areas of her life.
    Read More

Kindergarten Play

Annie Jr. - Winter Musical



247 South Street  |  Morristown, NJ  07960
Northern New Jersey's timeless and transformative co-ed independent elementary and middle school education for grades K-8.