We spent this first semester immersed in the history of the "Roaring 20's" and the effect it had on the Great Depression to come in the 1930's. Students learned about prohibition, organized crime and gangsters (Bonnie and Clyde crashed the party!), and the flappers who were women beginning to seek new ways of expressing themselves. We learned about how most adults smoked because they did not know smoking caused cancer at that time and would not know that for decades to come. We learned about the dangers of living for the moment and the hardships it creates. We also learned the Charleston and the Foxtrot. We watched performances by famous vaudeville actors such as "Laurel and Hardy" who "CAME" to the party and are in the video. We learned firsthand that the gambling that so many did during that time period SELDOM paid off --most students learned that playing the games! We learned that it is fun to dress up with our parents and teachers for one evening, pretending to enter a time machine and experience a time in America's history. The dancing made us hot and thirsty --many liters of SPRITE and ROOT BEER helped! Even the "RAID" from our local police officer was fun (I think the kids were expecting that one!). We had a blast!
This party was part of our first semester look at the "Roaring Twenties!" The motto for this decade was, "NEVER TAKE ANYONE OR ANYTHING FOR GRANTED. NOTICE - APPRECIATE!"
Students learned the conditions that led to the Roaring Twenties, the history of that time, and how it would eventually affect the next decade and the Great Depression.
The party was SO, SO much fun and allowed us to imagine we, too, were flappers and gangsters. Despite the costumes, the dancing, and the "pretending" of the night, this semester we learned how many in this time period thought only of themselves and made decisions that took those around them for granted. We learned that in most places (like where we live), the Roaring Twenties looked very different.
Our "Roaring Twenties" Speakeasy consisted of: passwords, peep holes, poker chips, parents dressed as gangsters and flappers, bottles of root beer, fancy tables, games, dancing, dancing, dancing, a floor show, a dance marathon, dancing, dancing, dancing, Laurel and Hardy, Bonnie and Clyde, dancing, dancing, dancing, the Great Gangster Parade, laughter, fun --even a Raid!...a night together with kids, teachers, & parents as a G.T. family --a night of memories.
1. Be in elementary library completely dressed NO LATER than 5:55 --we will leave library at 5:59 sharp!!!
2. You will have to know the password to get into the speakeasy
3. Once you reach the door, knock. When the peephole opens give the password. If the password you give is wrong, you will not be admitted.
4. The first thing you will do is get your bag of gold poker chips. Each person will have 10. Keep up with your bag (your name will be on it).
5. You will immediately begin playing games and wagering how many chips you wish on your ability to win at the game. YOU MAY ONLY PLAY EACH GAME ONCE UNTIL EVERYONE HAS HAD A CHANCE TO PLAY EACH GAME --if no one is at a game, you can play even if you have already played it. If you wager one chip and win, you will win one chip. If you lose you will lose the chip you wagered. The more chips you wager, the more you will win; however, if you lose you will lose bigger.
***THERE WILL BE SEVERAL TIMES THROUGHOUT THE EVENING WHEN YOU MAY ENJOY THE BEVERAGES AND SNACKS. GAME TIME IS ONE OF THOSE...but, you might want to wait until the FLOOR SHOW so you have more time to win gold chips.
THE THREE PEOPLE WHO HAVE THE MOST CHIPS AT THE END OF THE GAMES WILL RECEIVE THE "HIGH ROLLER" PRIZE.
***When I say the games are over, close the top of your bag and give it to the gold poker chip official. (Results will be announced at the end of the night)
6. LET'S DANCE!!!!! REMEMBER TO CLAP AFTER EACH SONG!!!!!! 1. Everyone will dance with everyone --all ages 2. You may not dance with the same person more than TWO times. I will be watching. 3. There are more boys than girls. EVERYONE dances the Charleston. If you are the boy with no partner, dance anyway. Boys without partners do not dance the foxtrot. If you are a boy sitting out a dance, you will only do that once. Tap on a guys shoulder and take someone else's place. If you are tapped and have not been out a dance, immediately "smile" and let the guy in. 4. I will say switch often. Do it FAST! 5. Make sure to do ALL the dance moves and dance when going from one move to another. 6. Girls must keep up and match the pace of the boy 7. There will be NO REFRESHMENTS during the dance time. Everyone must be up!!!
7. STAGE SHOW 1. We will have a stage show followed by the Grand Gangster Parade (don't poke...Get in place as soon as I call Grand Gangster Parade. You will march up on stage. Make a pose. ....and I will announce you with your gangster game.
* STAGE SHOW RULES (GOOD TIME FOR REFRESHMENTS)... everyone sits at their tables. You will be served by the waitresses AND may go to the serving station, but no more than five at a time. Use good table manners. Do not do anything to mess up the table decor. You should be quiet and respectful of the stage performers (even when getting refreshments). Pay attention. Laugh, if something is funny. But remember to clap loud and hard after an act.
8. After GRAND PARADE -- * Dance contest!!! There will be 4 winners. Two girls and two boys. Winners will not necessarily be partners. It doesn't matter who you dance with. * DANCE MARATHON!!!! Winners will be determined by energy put into the dance THROUGHOUT the 6 minute Charleston song!!!
9. ANNOUNCEMENT OF WINNERS!!! AND PRIZES. ...remember there is no whining with gangsters. Be a good sport!...or the Hessinator may just pay you
10. VISIT AT TABLES BEFORE PARTY ENDS
***There will be a bathroom. If you use it, you are expected to keep it CLEAN; however, if you use the bathroom, you will be missing out on the party. EVERYTHING WILL MOVE FAST!!!!!! Don't go to the bathroom unless you really have to and make it quick!