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Pinnacle Extends Lion Heart Experience to Families

The Lion Heart Experience is a popular show for scholars, teaching kids of all ages about anti-bullying, mental health, and self-esteem among many other topics. The audience for this rendition of The Lion Heart Experience was not students, but their parents, for a special Family Night Experience at Pinnacle Academy.

Lion Heart Performer speaks to Pinnacle audience
The Lion Heart Experience performs to families for The Lion Heart Experience Family Night at Pinnacle Academy.
The assembly combines music, dance, art, and crowd interaction to weave in its themes and inspiration to the audience. The show serves as a source of empowerment and positivity for scholars, and schools often make the show a staple of their yearly calendar.

Michelle Schiefen, a senior school finance controller with National Heritage Academies (NHA), has helped schools identify The Lion Heart Experience as a beneficial student assembly. She said the presentation aligns well with NHA’s Moral Focus virtues.

Lion Heart performer creating lion picture
One major aspect of The Lion Heart Experience is a live art performance, creating the picture of a lion. The art was donated to the school after the performance.

“I think it’s important to bring to our schools,” Schiefen said. “It’s different. They are a multi-ethnic group, which helps because our students are seeing someone like them in this exciting assembly. My kids come home singing the songs for a month, and that is literally Moral Focus engagement.”

Scholars at several NHA partner-schools are familiar with The Lion Heart Experience, but Pinnacle’s Family Night was a unique presentation, encouraging parents to get involved and see the show firsthand.

Pinnacle student poses with performer
Third-grade scholar Legend Harper (right) poses with one of the performers from the show.

Pinnacle parents raved about the performance and how excited their scholars were after the show. Everyone in the crowd was moving and grooving, dancing to the group’s empowering tunes.

“We had an amazing, exhilarating time at The Lion Heart Experience,” one parent said of the night. “It was one of my favorite events I’ve ever been to with my son! Completely inspiring and motivating.”

Another parent said they were feeling a little tired the night of the performance, but decided to go based on how excited their child was about the performance. Nurturing parent partnerships like this one is one of the many reasons Pinnacle has outperformed the local district for two years.

Finished Lion Heart artwork
A finished version of the live art performance from The Lion Heart Experience.

Principal Katie Strick said she loved how the show promoted self-worth to every scholar. The show also posed a lot of the same questions to parents in the room as they did to scholars. This interaction gave kids a new touchpoint to relate to their parents.

“I would recommend any school have this experience if they have the opportunity to do it,” Strick said. “I would just suggest if any schools had this opportunity, take it because I think our parents really loved it. The students loved it, and it was all around just a great experience.”

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About Pinnacle Academy
Pinnacle Academy is a tuition-free, public charter school in Euclid, Ohio, serving students in kindergarten through eighth grade. It is part of the National Heritage Academies network, which includes more than 100 tuition-free, public charter schools serving more than 65,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade across nine states. For more information, visit

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