LOS ANGELES, Sept. 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- At least 11 million students in the U.S.—the majority of which are in lower income, predominantly black and Hispanic neighborhoods—have been missing school during the Covid-19 pandemic because they don't have access to computers or tablets for distance learning*.
National youth empowerment speaker, author and songwriter Jenn August aims to change all that by adapting her growth mindset musical—"Jean & the Wonderful Idea Machine"—for Zoom. August, who premiered the musical last year with the Portland Musical Theater Company, shot the digital version via Zoom—the first of its kind—and will donate 80 percent of proceeds to DonorsChoose.org, which helps classrooms in need.
Currently there are more than 5,000 schools asking for computers and tablets needed urgently for distance learning. The remaining 20 percent of donations will cover the production costs, which were modest given the Zoom format. August chose the charity for its impeccable reputation and involvement of trusted luminaries such as Stephen Colbert and Yvette Nicole Brown of CBS and Johnathan Alter of MSNBC.
The musical, based on her celebrated eponymous children's book, tells the story of Jean, who invents a machine that changes worried thoughts to wonderful ideas. Word of the invention earns her an invitation to the world peace summit to help solve global problems. August said the show's growth mindset message is exactly what the world needs right now.
"With a global pandemic and worldwide civil rights movement going on, everyone is wondering what the world will look like after COVID-19," August said. "I believe this is an opportunity for us to shift from a fixed, reactionary mindset into a progressive growth mindset. We're not going to get there unless everyone has equal access to education and equal rights. Our goal with the Zoom musical is to create a national platform to call attention to this critical issue and get all kids-access to the devices they need to learn. This is a historic time in America and we want to inspire kids—no matter what background they come from—to be the change they want to see in the world."
August admits that's not easy, in a world where skin color or disabilities can create opportunity barriers—particularly in education—causing lack of self-esteem and hope. As a child battling dyslexia and ADHD, she struggled with self-worth. As she learned how to overcome her learning disabilities, she became passionate about teaching children and adults how to transform negative, self-limiting mindsets into positive, solution oriented ones. Through her growth mindset school assemblies and teacher trainings, she uses humor, stories, and music to inspire and empower students and educators. Her mission is to teach kids to use their powerful minds to create wonderful lives and be a force of positive change in the world.
Tickets to the 50-minute musical cost $20 per streaming device, to keep it as accessible as possible. The streamed performances take place on Zoom on the following dates and times:
- Sept. 19 at 1pm Pacific/4 pm Eastern
- Sept. 20 at 1pm Pacific/4 pm Eastern
- Sept. 26 at 1pm Pacific/4 pm Eastern
- Sept. 27 at 1pm Pacific/4 pm Eastern
Tickets can be purchased at www.thewonderfulideamachine.com. Included with the donation is her free resource guide on how to encourage a growth mindset in the children in your life.
The musical stars actors from across the U.S. Learn more about Jenn August here.
*According to USAFacts
NOTE FOR EDITORS: Find images here.
SOURCE Jenn August