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Lutz teacher Jennifer Shaffer brings history to life with stage plays

Lutz history class
Posted at 4:03 AM, Feb 06, 2020
and last updated 2021-09-24 08:45:09-04

LUTZ, Fla. — Remember history class when you were in middle school? Was it boring?

Jennifer Shaffer’s 7th graders at Lutz Elementary School says her history class is anything but boring. She helps bring their lessons to life.

Lutz Elementary recently added middle schoolers and challenged the teachers to create a curriculum to keep students engaged.

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Shaffer combined her love of history and theater and the result was pure magic.

“History is boring in the past," Shaffer says. "I can't tell you how many adults have said, I opened my text book, I read it. It was boring but it doesn't have to be that way, you know?!”

Shaffer has written seven plays so far. In each one, she puts a modern twists on classics.

She even came up with a way to incorporate MC Hammer’s dance into a Charles Dicken’s classic.

“I want to bring in up to date music and I want the kids to have fun with it, But I want the speeches and what they say to be historical," Shaffer said.

Her students and her principal love it.

She is the Tampa Bay area’s version of Hamilton Producer, Lin-Manuel Miranda. Her students say they are so lucky to be in her room, the one where the magic happens.