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This Chicago Theatre Company Is Making Movies Out Of Student Stories!

Barrel of Monkeys is an ensemble of actor/educators who create an alternative learning environment in which children share their personal voices and celebrate the power of their imaginations. "The Monkeys" accomplishes this through creative writing workshops and in-school performances of children’s stories. Barrel of Monkeys also engages the broader community in support of the visions of children through public performances of their work.

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Barrel of Monkeys teaches creative writing and adapts student work into performance!


Barrel of Monkeys has been teaching creative writing workshops and adapting student work for 20 years! Here is Barrel of Monkeys in action on stage!

They also have been making movies specifically for the internet based on student stories! Here is a film called Three Day College.

View this video on YouTube / Via

Here is the student story that the video is based on:

Three Day College

By Cedric T, 7th Grade, Loyola Park After School Program

Are you not good for college? And your mom told you to go find a job? Well head on to 3 day college! Where you learn for 3 days and move all your stuff out again. For only $1,000 dollars you will learn a hour a day and don’t do nothing for the rest of the day. 3 Day college is only good for 3 days. Don’t complain because you cant always have it your way!! Lists are filling up NOW!! CALL TODAY CALL 1251-3067 THE END.

Here is another gem called I Am Poop.

View this video on YouTube / Via

Adapted from...

I Am Poop

By Nicholas, 5th Grade, Cleveland School

I am poop.

I see a toliet.

I fear of going down the toliet.

I hope I do not go down the toliet.

I am poop.

I am brown.

I think I will go down the toliet.

I cry for going down the toliet.

I touch water.

I am big and some time I am little,

I am one of the smelliest things in the world.

I try not to go down the toliet.

I pretend to be a log.

I say I am a log.

I am lonely.


Here is one based on a true story of a student's sister who fell in garbage.

View this video on YouTube / Via


By Cesar C, Stockton School

My sister fell on garbage and she cried. THE END.

Hear is a dialogue between a pear and an apple.

View this video on YouTube / Via

Pear and Apple

By Nick, 5th Grade, Pritzker School

Dear Pear,

You are lucky because you have a good view of the city. I would like it if you consider changing places with me.



Dear Apple,

Your idea is weird and no I do not want to change with you. I like it here. We can’t switch anyway we are attached to the branch.

I hate you,



And letters written between a flag and a globe.

View this video on YouTube / Via

Flag and Globe

By William K., Pritzker School

Dear Flag,

I am the globe on the cabinet across from you. I know everything in the world. Have you been around the world. I hate the mornings. Everyone salutes you and I’m only taken out for work. Sheeshops, I just moved to another school, bye.

Dear Globe,

I’m very sad your jealous of me. Humph. Your so stuck up. You deserve to be boring. Oh no. Someones burning me. Oh wait, the whole school is burning, ahhhhmhhh. P.S. I’m sorry.


Find out More About Barrel of Monkeys.

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Check out this video for more information about Barrel of Monkeys' in-school programming and weekly public show in Chicago! Even more info at

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