Grandpa’s Garden

Grandpa's Garden was developed by Brave Little Company and students from Mitchell Elementary (Houston ISD). It features music and lyrics by Rodrick Randall. Grandpa's Garden was funded in part by a grant from the Children's Theatre Foundation of America.

Performance Requirements

Rather than a traditional assembly performance, it’s better to think of Grandpa’s Garden as a two-part workshop (that just happens to be taught by actors in character!)

  • Each “chapter” lasts 45 minutes and should be performed for the same group of students on different days. For example, Mrs. Smith’s class could see Chapter 1 on a Tuesday and Chapter 2 on a Thursday, or on two Mondays in different weeks.

  • It can be performed for one classroom (up to 25 students) at a time.

  • Even though it’s performed for one classroom at a time, we can book up to 4 performances on one day. For example, Mrs. Smith’s class, Mr. Washington’s class, Ms. Ramirez’s class, and Mrs. Gupta’s class could each have their own showing of Chapter 1 on Tuesday and Chapter 2 on Thursday.

During Chapter 1, each student receives a peat pot with soil. They will plant their own squash seeds. They can keep the pot and watch their squash plant grow!

Please note that the actors and participants will be handling real soil, water, and produce (squash, carrots, celery, spinach, broccoli) in Grandpa’s Garden.


For one classroom (includes 2 visits): $425

For two classrooms (includes 2 visits): $600

For three classrooms (includes 2 visits): $750

For four classrooms (includes 2 visits): $900

*If your venue is a public library, please contact Young Audiences of Houston for special pricing.

Extension Activities

Extension Activity 1 - Modeling Life Cycles [PDF]

Extension Activity 2 - Light and Plant Growth (Evaluating Claims Using Evidence) [PDF] 

Extension activities created by Lisa Felske, Curriculum Director for Science, Harris County Department of Education. 

Brittny Bush in Brave Little Company's production of  Grandpa's Garden .

Brittny Bush in Brave Little Company's production of Grandpa's Garden.

How did we create Grandpa’s Garden?

A girl and her grandfather. A bountiful garden. A hidden key. A family mystery. A classroom full of brave and inquisitive students.

These are the basic ingredients of the proposed project that will become Grandpa’s Garden: an immersive, interactive piece about plants and their roots – and families and their roots. It's a piece that Brave Little Company artists, educators, and children will create together. First, we will innovate through meaningful collaboration with students at an under-resourced elementary school. Students will receive their first introduction to theatre education – and we will gather their valuable input toward the creation of this piece. They will teach us how to best portray their ideas, thoughts, fears, hopes, words, and actions. Preference for this FREE residency will be give to schools that are part of the Arts Access Initiative

The second innovative aspect will be creating a piece that is performed for classroom-sized audiences, rather than large assemblies. This allows the performers to be more improvisational, to break the fourth wall, and to blur the lines between actor and teaching artist. 

Third, we will develop theatre-based extension activities in science for classroom teachers to continue the class’s exploration of family history and science before and after the performance.

This project will be funded in part by a Founder's Grant for Project Development from the Children's Theatre Foundation of America.

It'll be an amazing experience! We hope you can meet us in the garden.