Face to Face ’15 Session Descriptions



SESSION I: 10:30 AM – 12:00 NOON

A. Designing Choice and Experience, Part I

John Holyoke, Assistant Director, Christopher Lea, Teaching Artist, Lincoln Center Education; Shula Ehrlich, Lead Game Designer, Institute of Play

What can game design tell us about experiential lesson design? Balancing limits and options is necessary to make any activity engaging and meaningful. A careful interweaving of choices and questions can drive understanding deeper. Lincoln Center Education will collaborate with the Institute of Play to construct a dynamic comparison between games and activities. This workshop uses model activities and experiments in game making to illuminate optimal design principles for arts teachers.

B. Shakespeare Unleashed: Performance-Based Teaching Approaches to the Bard

Alexandra López, Associate Director of Education, Lincoln Center Theater; Kathleen Dorman, Director of Education, Classic Stage Company; Katie Miller, Education Director, Theatre for a New Audience; Katharine Moran, Manager of Shakespeare Education Programs, The English-Speaking Union of the United States

The Bard’s plays are performative texts that are meant to be heard, spoken, and seen. In spite of this, many educators don’t have the skills to go beyond the read-analyze-and-write-an-essay method of teaching Shakespeare. The NYC Shakespeare Educators Roundtable is a coalition of NYC-based organizations with multiple approaches to teaching performance-based Shakespeare with students and teachers. Our interactive session will explore a variety of ways to get Shakespeare up on its feet and actively engage students of all levels and abilities in the text. Participants will gain the knowledge, skills, and confidence to set the Bard free in their classrooms and rehearsal rooms.

C. Exploring Latin American Culture Through Dance

Raquel Valiente, School Programs Manager, Kiri Avelar, Associate Director, School of Dance, Ballet Hispanico

Ballet Hispanico will show how to successfully incorporate different aspects of Latin American culture, such as music, literature, and art work, into a dance lesson. Attendees will find ways to take a holistic approach to teaching and cover all methods: visual, verbal, and kinesthetic. Participants will also have the opportunity to explore ways in which they can apply the tools provided to their own area of expertise.

D. Don’t Just Say It. . .Sing It!

Chris Forte, Education Liaison, John Bellia, Teaching Artist, Marquis Studios

Music has been a form of communication since the caveman. With the development of language, songs have been a popular way of transmitting feelings and thought; this is seen even in the most primitive cultures of today’s world. In this workshop, we will investigate a simple technique that allows teachers to use songwriting as a tool to make connections and strengthen the bonds among students, giving them a means to express themselves as a group.

E. How Our Stories Inform Our Teaching

Jordan Dann, Education Director, Teachers & Writers Collaborative

In this workshop we will reflect on the ways our own stories influence how we connect with our students. Through creative writing exercises, we will explore the complexities of seeing our students as unique individuals with a diverse range of experiences, and how our own biography may limit or contribute to our ability to cultivate empathy in the classroom.

F. Family Room: Designing Activities and Spaces for Intergenerational Audiences

Renata Melillo, Education Programs Manager, Ben Weber, Education Programs Associate, The New Victory Theater

How can activities for intergenerational audiences transform a space into one that invites families to deepen relationships, learn an artistic skill, and play? The New Victory Theater offers a variety of family engagement opportunities within the theater lobby itself, from shadow-puppetry lessons to character-creation stations to text message scavenger hunts. In this workshop participants will make their own Family Engagement activity while imagining how these best practices can be applied to their own organizations.

G. Evolving Trends in New York City Arts and Education Policy and Advocacy

Eric Pryor, Executive Director, The Center for Arts Education; Cheri Walsh, Executive Director, Exploring the Arts; Jimmy Van Bramer, Cultural Committee Chair, New York City Council; Heather Woodfield, Executive Director, One Percent for Culture

With new city leadership, arts education and arts and cultural policy is undergoing significant transformation. The Mayor’s recent announcement of a new $23 million allocation annually for arts education is one example of this change. This panel will explore current trends and shifts occurring in the arts and education fields, and reflect on the role of advocacy and citizen engagement in the policy and decision-making process

SESSON II: 1:15 PM – 2:45 PM

A. Designing Choice and Experience, Part II

John Holyoke, Assistant Director, Christopher Lea, Teaching Artist, Lincoln Center Education; Shula Ehrlich, Lead Game Designer, Institute of Play

What can game design tell us about experiential lesson design? Balancing limits and options is necessary to make any activity engaging and meaningful. A careful interweaving of choices and questions can drive understanding deeper. Lincoln Center Education will collaborate with the Institute of Play to construct a dynamic comparison between games and activities. This workshop uses model activities and experiments in game making to illuminate optimal design principles for arts teachers.

B. Finding the Common Core: Situating Opera Within the State Standards

Angela Marroy Boerger, Education Manager, The Metropolitan Opera; Christopher Czajka, Director of Educational and Community Outreach, THIRTEEN/WNET

Opera is a vibrantly contextual art form, and is tightly woven with connections to history, politics, ethics, philosophy, artistic and literary movements, the history of ideas, and more. It is the perfect medium for exploring relevant topics in English Language Arts and Social Studies curricula. This session will explore teaching techniques that marry the close study of operas with the latest curriculum directives in the Common Core State Standards. The session will include a sample classroom activity structured around Franz Lehár’s operetta The Merry Widow, from the HD Live in Schools initiative, a subset of the Met’s Peabody Award–winning series, Live in HD.

C. The Youngest Artist: Arts Education for ages 0–3

Lauren Jost, Artistic Director, Susanna Brock, Teaching Artist, and Christine Dehne, Artist, Spellbound Theatre

Very young children have a diverse range of developmental, social, and creative abilities and interests. Join Spellbound Theatre, New York’s only theatre company exclusively for the very young, as we explore how to structure and present educational programs that address the needs and abilities of this unique age-group. Get messy and silly with Spellbound artists as we explore the applications of arts education for family, school, community, and early-childhood programming.

D. In Full Color: Cultivating a New Generation of Leaders in the Field of Arts Education

James Miles, Professional Development Manager/Instructional Coach, Urban Arts Partnership; Sobha Kavanakudiyil, Faculty, CCNY Educational Theatre Program; Michael Wiggins, Director of Education, Urban Arts Partnership; Courtney J. Boddie, Director of Education/School Engagement, New Victory Theatre.

In an interactive panel, diverse arts administrators and educators will share their professional journeys, identifying the challenges and supports they have encountered on their pathway to leadership positions in the field of arts education. Each panelist will focus on the same essential question: Why doesn’t the makeup of our nonprofit leadership more accurately reflect the demographics of the populations arts educators serve, and how can we achieve more diversity?

E. Meet the Grantmaker

Jennifer Clarke, Managing Director, NYC Arts in Education Roundtable; David Andersson, Director of Special Projects, Program Services, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs; Kathleen Masterson, Program Director, Arts Education and Literature, New York State Council on the Arts; Kerry McCarthy, Senior Program Officer, Arts and Historic Preservation, New York Community Trust

This panel will explore grant-making trends in arts education and strategies for successful grant-seeking in the current financial reality. The session will incorporate panelist presentations, questions from attendees, and opportunities to meet and talk to funders.

F. Let a Girl Be Heard: A Creative Approach to Avoiding Gender Bias in the Classroom and Beyond

Dena Adriance, Director of Education, Blanca Vivancos, Lead Teaching Artist, Tiff Roma and Kristin Richardson Jordan, Assistant Teaching Artists, Girl Be Heard

This hands-on, creative workshop is an opportunity for participants to improve their positive impact on gender equality. Using theatre-based techniques, participants will gain perspective on their own performance and will have the opportunity to consider new approaches to balancing boys’ and girls’ participation in the classroom and beyond.

G. The Productivity Puzzle – A Practical Guide for Teaching Artists
Andrew Frank, Executive Director, New York City Children’s Theater

The Productivity Puzzle is an audience-engagement workshop that addresses the challenges associated with the strategic management of everyday life: structuring time, managing personal resources (energy, wellness, relationships), and balancing personal life with professional practice. This workshop engages with participants’ preexisting ideas and expectations about productivity management and, through dialogue and collaborative learning, measures them against strategies, frameworks, and insights that have led others to success.

SESSION III: 4:15 PM – 5:45 PM

A. STEM Programming Through the Performing and Visual Arts

Barbara Pollard, Director of Special Programs, Tishawn Gonsalves and Amy Beth Wright, Teaching Artists, Marquis Studios; Ellen Darensbourg, Magnet Coordinator, PS 354Q

Marquis Studios and PS 354Q partnered this year to provide three to four STEM programs for each grade. This panel gives an overview of these programs as well as workshops in the visual arts and creative movement that demonstrate ways of integrating the sciences and technology with arts programs. These hands-on activities highlight applications that enhance an educator’s ability to embed the arts into STEM programs in meaningful and exciting ways.

B. Accessible and Flexible: Adapting Movement Workshops for Children with Disabilities

Meghan Kent, Assistant Director, Education, NYC Ballet; Miranda Appelbaum, Senior Manager, Accessibility and Visitor Services, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts; Dr. Joseph Dutkowsky, Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center

New York City Ballet this year partnered with two organizations, the Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center at Columbia University and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ Accessibility and Visitor Services to provide tailored, engaging movement workshops for children with disabilities. For this pilot initiative, NYCB adapted its Children’s Workshop series to meet the needs of children with cerebral palsy and children with developmental disabilities, including autism. Using a model of research, training, and adapted activities, NYCB will share its process of modifying an existing program to one for children with disabilities, and the panel will facilitate a discussion with attendees to create strategies for expanding their programs to welcome new and diverse audiences.

C. Advocacy for a Healthy Arts Education Ecosystem

Jeff M. Poulin, Arts Education Program Coordinator, Americans for the Arts; Ian Driver, Director, New York State Alliance for Arts Education; Alex Sarian, Director of Business Development and Operations, Lincoln Center Education

Join in a collaborative conversation, facilitated by Americans for the Arts, to discuss the health of the larger arts education ecosystem beyond NYC. With an understanding of the local-state-federal pipeline of support for arts education, attendees will tackle the question: “How can you use your influence to effect change and increase support for arts education in your community through federal and state systems?”

D. This Is Your Brain on Art: The Intersections of Neuroscience and Arts Education

Philip Alexander, Arts in Education Director, Brooklyn Arts Council

In this informative and interactive workshop, we’ll explore some key findings in neuroscience and their relationship with learning frameworks and arts standards. Designed for educators in all art forms at all levels, this workshop will ask participants to reflect and reconsider their teaching practice and brainstorm new pedagogical approaches. Don’t forget to bring your brain!

E. Adobe Youth Voices: Facilitating Idea-Generation and Collaboration in the Creative Media-Making Process to Develop an Authentic Student Voice

Armando Somoza, Program Director, Mikey Cordero, Program Coordinator, Urban Arts Partnership

Urban Arts Partnership is the network partner leading Adobe Youth Voices programming in NYC. We will facilitate a hands-on, active, art-making storytelling “List Poem Activity” designed to give participants an opportunity to work collaboratively on creating a storyboard of a group poem using basic art supplies. Come and discover the importance of scaffolding activities as part of the media-making process and how the steps are best facilitated.

F. Conference Meet-Up – an open space to continue the conversations that inspire you at Face to Face

Sobha Kavanakudiyil, Faculty, CCNY Educational Theatre Program

If you would like to continue the conversations that inspire you at Face to Face, please join us around the table to do just that! Based on an open space model, this session will be an area where participants can keep the discussions alive that started at other sessions, reflect on the morning at the conference, and share information learned from other practitioners today. Please grab a cup of coffee and join us!

G. Thinking Historically and Visually: Artistic Voice in the Social Studies Classroom

Nellie A.V. Chaban, Director of Education & Public Programs, Emily Davidson, Four Freedoms Educator, The Four Freedoms Park Conservancy

How can we use art and social studies to empower students to find their artistic voice and become active citizens? In this session, participants will apply concepts of historic and visual thinking to communicate a collaborative civic vision. We will explore how arts-integrated practice can bridge our students’ comprehension of historic and current events so they can meaningfully connect social studies content to their personal experiences.


SESSION IV: 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM

A. Arts Achieve: Finding Balance in Arts Assessment

Paul King, Executive Director, Office of Arts and Special Projects, NYC Department of Education; Thomas Cahill, President and CEO of Studio in a School 

Arts Achieve: Impacting Student Success in the Art was a federally-funded multi-year research project that created performance-based arts assessments in dance, music, theater, and visual arts aligned with the NYC Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in the Arts. Join the project teams and sample an assessment task, learn how technology supported formative assessment practices, and leave with strategies relevant to your teaching and assessment practices. Dance, music, theater, and visual arts break-out sessions will be led by NYCDOE Office of Arts and Special Projects directors and coordinators with staff from the project partners, Studio in a School, ArtsConnection, Weill Institute of Music at Carnegie Hall, and The 92nd Street Y Harkness Dance Center’s Dance Education Laboratory.

B. Extending Early Learning Through Family Engagement and Museums

Barbara Palley, Director of Education, Stefania Trelles, Education Coordinator, Cool Culture; Shanta Lawson, Education Manager, Erin Hylton, School Programs Coordinator, Studio Museum in Harlem

Narrowing the opportunity gap requires more than arts education in schools. Join Cool Culture and the Studio Museum in Harlem in exploring best practices in engaging families in supporting children’s learning through art museums. As a case study, we will look at Literacy through Culture, a partnership program with a thematic unit of art-looking and art-making activities that extend learning from school time into family time, in pre-kindergarten classrooms, museums, and homes.

C. The Teaching Artists Pathways Tool: A Road Map for Career Development and Community-Building

Courtney J. Boddie, Director of Education/School Engagement, WT McRae, Teaching Artist, The New Victory Theater; Paul Thompson, Teaching Artist, Lincoln Center Education, CAE, and The Joyce Theater; Michael Wiggins, Director of Education, Urban Arts Partnership

This workshop builds on work begun at the National Guild for Community Arts Education Conference in 2013 by the National Teaching Artist Collective. The new Teaching Artist Pathways (TAP) Tool, envisioned as an online resource for data-collection, community-building, and career development for teaching artists at all stages, will be presented for feedback. Participants will complete their own TAP Tool as reflective practice, and articulate their dream for the next steps in their career.

D. Dive In! A Guided Multifaceted Exploration of a Work of Art

Madeline Cohen, Education Director, Regina Larkin, Manager of Education Programs, Abbie Woodruff, Education Assistant, Symphony Space

How do you get everyone in the class engaged and involved, not just the few who always raise their hand? An inquiry-based exploration of a live dance excerpt and images of global art will be used to demonstrate how these strategies can be applied to any art form. Physical activity, group discussion, lesson development, and referencing the Common Core will be integrated throughout the session.

E. Recording Radio Drama: Using Technology to Share Stories and Build Classroom Community

Kenny Finkle, Teaching Artist, DreamYard Project

During this hands-on workshop, attendees will write and record short radio dramas using the computer audio program GarageBand to explore the fundamentals of voice (emotion, pitch, volume) and explore new approaches to theatrical storytelling.

F. Creating Adaptive Arts Experiences for Participants on the Autism Spectrum

Aaron Feinstein, Executive Director, Sara Hunter Orr, Director of Education and Outreach, Actionplay

Attendees will receive an overview of the sensory-processing and learning differences of people on the autism spectrum. Next, they will be invited to gain a deeper understanding of autism by participating in a kinesthetic “sensory walk.” Attendees will then participate in an exercise to learn how music and movement can be used to create adaptive and sensory-friendly classrooms. The session will end with a dialogue around how attendees can implement their new awareness about accessible arts practices at their own organizations.

SESSION V: 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM

A. Mentoring Student Playwrights

Paul Brewster, Senior Manager of Education Programs, Daniel Sullivan, Teaching Artist, Gail Winar, Teaching Artist, Roundabout Theatre Company

In this active workshop for facilitators and curriculum developers, participants will experience writing activities from three of Roundabout’s after-school playwriting curriculum models. Participants will be guided by Roundabout teaching artists through activities that empower students as agents of their own learning. Special emphasis will be placed on how the strategies can be applied to session participants’ own work.

B. The Teaching Artist Purpose Threads: A Way to Identify, Discuss, and Develop the Current Scope of Our Work

Jean E. Taylor, Full-Time Teaching Artist, José Vélez, Associate Director, TA Faculty & Fellowships, Lincoln Center Education; Eric Booth, Arts Learning Consultant

Teaching artists work with many different learners, in multiple settings, for a range of specific purposes. In this session, we will explore the Teaching Artist Purpose Threads (work of art, skill development, arts integration, social development, and community quality of life), which offers teaching artists a way to think deeply about their work, in turn affecting their planning, implementation, and assessment. The Purpose Threads along with an evolving Rubric for Excellence and Sustainability in Teaching Artistry are the main components of Lincoln Center Education’s International Teaching Artist Training Program.

C. Embodying Possibilities for Social Justice – Why Telling Our Stories Matters

Rajeeyah Finnie-Myers, Dance Department Head and Coach, Lisa Green, Dance Teaching Artist, DreamYard Project

Using movement/dance, this workshop guides participants through a structured session that goes from a visceral response to the social issues that are happening around us to an intentional building of our own narrative about these issues. Participants will then discuss how this creative process connects to critical analysis of social issues and why it might be helpful to offer such an experience to young people.

D. Multidisciplinary Approaches to Working with English Language Learners

Alexandra López, Associate Director of Education, Andrea Dishy, Education Projects Manager, Lincoln Center Theater; Erin Loughran, DELLTA Program Associate, ArtsConnection; Claire Tunkel, Story Studio Program Coordinator, Urban Arts Partnership

On its 2013 Demographics Report, the NYCDOE Office of English Language Learners found that over 14% of the school population are ELLs. As arts educators, we have to adapt our approach to teaching to address the needs of all learners. Through our art forms, we can help students develop the confidence and speaking skills to improve their understanding and mastery of English. In this presentation, three arts organizations with groundbreaking programs specifically geared to ELLs will demonstrate some of their successful strategies for working with students with developing English-language proficiency.

E. Finding the Aesthetics in Arts-Based Research

Joe Salvatore, Clinical Associate Professor of Educational Theatre, Steinhardt School, Program in Educational Theatre, Darci Burch, Student, Researcher, Actor, Barbara Kaynan, Student, Assistant Director, Drama Therapy Program, and Liane Tomasetti, Student, Researcher, Actor, Gallatin School of Individualized Study, New York University

Arts-based research has gained momentum over the last two decades as a valued way of presenting qualitative data for audiences; however, performances of data present various aesthetic challenges that have to be overcome. This presentation will use a case study production called Towards the Fear: An Exploration of Bullying, Social Combat, and Aggression created at NYU Steinhardt to examine the power and potential of strong aesthetic choices that lead to compelling performances of arts-based research data.

F. Using the Tools of Restorative Community to Build Relatedness in Your Organization

Rodney Lopez, National Program Director; Matthew Longhurst, National Operations Director, Dancing Classrooms

Dancing Classrooms is a social and emotional learning arts provider that cultivates essential life skills in children through the practice of social dance. In this workshop, Dancing Classrooms aims to share its experience with the tools of building restorative community among its local and national leadership and staff based on the book Community: The Structure of Belonging. Participants will leave with concrete ideas and suggestions for how to build community in their organizations.

G. Mixing the Digital and Drama: Making Performance-Based Online Maps

Peter Avery, Director of Theater, NYC Department of Education; Dr. Paul Sutton, Artistic Director, Max Allsup, Assistant Director, C&T, the UK applied theater company mixing drama, learning, and digital technologies

At the intersection of theater, digital technologies, and student voice, the Digital Theatre Project represents an innovative approach to theater education with youth. Grounded in applied theater techniques, the workshop explores incorporating digital media in student theater work that is both relevant and artistically sound. Participants learn pragmatic and aspirational techniques for storytelling and digital mapping while understanding the context of this work that strives for “glocalization”– enabling youth to share their artistry with other students whether in the same room or virtually face to face across thousands of miles.

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NYC AiE Roundtable