By Julie Huss
---- — LONDONDERRY — A morning at the movies turned into valuable teaching tools for Londondonderry Middle School students.
Four busloads of middle-schoolers embarked on an early morning theater trip to the O’neil Cinema in town to watch a showing of the film “The Lightning Thief” and enjoy popcorn and soda.
The trip to the movies was part of the school’s studies of mythology and the book based on the 2005 bestseller “The Lightning Thief” by Rick Riordan.
To make the film fest all the more true to life, student showed up at the theater dressed in togas and other mythological garb.
“The Lightning Thief” is the story of 12-year-old Percy Jackson, a boy who discovers he is a demigod, born of a mortal mother and Greek god father.
Percy goes on adventures into the mythological world to help thwart a battle between Zeus, Poseidon and Hades.
The book earned honors and eventually became a film, produced in 2010.
Students dressed for the part and enjoyed the film for only a small cost of popcorn and other treats.
Earlier in the day, a Skype session connected Londonderry Middle School classes with locations in Sicily to highlight other aspects of mythology and that part of the world.
Teacher Joanne Troy enlisted a cousin, Peter Leone, to provide the information from Sicily to help the students in their Greek studies showing them the sights and helping them learn about other cultures.
“He does this for us every year,” Troy said.
Troy said students study Greece and mythology every year. This is the first time they received a private movie showing to accompany their studies.
“We’re trying to tie it in all together,” she said, “to make good connections.”
She thanked the O’neil family for opening their theater to the students.
“They are playing (the film) just for them,” she said. “Kudos to them.”