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Using the Arts to Teach Science and Grammar

This week teachers, school administrators and parents from schools all across North Carolina are being educated and reminded that there are more effective ways to learn, think and retain information than rote memorization.The 2011 United Arts Council Arts Integration Institute is giving its record number of participants a hands-on opportunity to work with some of the finest teaching artists in the country to invigorate their classroom through arts integration. By involving all the senses, they are learning how to create a rich educational environment for their students. This successful and popular week-long workshop is led by writer, Mimi Hermann, and the staff at United Arts.

“This year’s Institute is a magical experience,” says Ms. Herman. She continues, “Teachers will earn ‘no more dirty looks’ from students this fall when they return to school to help their classes discover folk tales through shadow puppets, how to punctuate a sentence through dance, social studies through writing and acting in their own plays, different cultures through music, the elements of stories through bookmaking, and the water cycle through poetry, dance and art.”

Participants of the Institute agree:

“This is an educational experience that weaves education, art, and soul into its tapestry, all the while using the North Carolina Standard Course of Study as its thread.”

“If my students don’t realize they are learning, the learners become the facilitators of their own knowledge.”

Workshop presenters for the Immersion Track this year include: Martha Connerton, Dance; Hobey Ford, Drama; Peg Gignoux, Visual Art; Imani Gonzalez, Music; and Mimi Herman, Creative Writing.

The Advanced Track is spending the week with the professional touring theatre company, EbzB, with Serena Ebhardt and David zum Brunnen and the actor and playwright, Mike Wiley, (Blood Done Sign My Name and the Parchman Hour).

On Friday, June 24, at 12 noon, the Advanced Track at the Institute will present their dramatic documentary. It is based on the childhood song “Wheels on the Bus“, but serious subjects such as school integration, neighborhood schools, and busing are woven throughout the performance of the song.

About the United Arts Council of Raleigh & Wake County
The United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County, based in Raleigh, NC, was incorporated in 1990. Our mission is to build better communities through support and advocacy of the arts.  The United Arts Council offers grants to schools, organizations, communities and individual artists. United Arts also provides services to the community such as advocacy, resource development, professional/leadership development and special projects. The grants, programs and services of United Arts reach over 1.2 million people annually in Wake County. This year’s funding will support over 690 public music, dance and theatre performances, festivals and art exhibitions; over 3,700 classes/workshops in the arts for youth outside of school; and 147,000 hours of programming in 137 Wake County schools.

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