I have a Master’s Degree in Education: Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Arts Integration from Lesley University. Additionally, I earned a Certificate in Arts Integration and Integrated Learning for Social Justice from Alameda County Office of Education (ACOE). Mastery in Integrated Learning has now positioned me as Senior Faculty and Advisor to the award-winning Integrated Learning Specialist Program of ACOE.
Dance Education: Boys & Dance
A former professional actor and dancer, I have taught dance for over 25 years. I have taught both domestically and abroad for the San Francisco Unified School District, The California Department of Education, The California Dance Educators Association (CDEA), The Kennedy Center and the Edinburgh International Festival in Scotland, among many others, where my content emphasis was Ballet, World Dance & Culture, and Males in Dance. I am a former Board Member of the National Dance Education Organization (NDEO), where I served for three years as a subject matter expert on males in dance. As the former Director of Education of San Francisco, I taught males of levels 1 through 3, and additional special courses in strength and fitness for the male dancer. I was also responsible for the recruitment, retention, and training of both male and female dancers.
I have worked in Professional Development for Classroom Teachers and Teaching Artists for over 20 years. As a Master Artist Educator, I was one of the original instructors for the inception of The California Arts Project (TCAP), a subject matter project of the California Department of Education. In the last five years, I have taught master classes and workshops for Stanford University, Harvard Graduate School of Education, Mills College of Oakland, and UC Berkeley. I currently serve as a Professional Expert in Adult Education and Integrated Learning in the Educational Services Division of the Alameda County Office of Education. Much of my primary framework content includes Teaching for Understanding, Studio Habits of Mind, Culturally Responsive Pedagogy, and Making Learning Visible. With an emphasis in Multi-Cultural Curriculum, I continue to consult and train teachers and artists around the world through my private practice.
Culturally-Responsive Teaching & Teaching for Social Justice
Culturally Responsive Teaching is a pedagogy that recognizes the importance of including students’ cultural references in all aspects of learning. Arts Education for Social Justice, Critical Pedagogy, and Multi-Cultural Curriculum continue to be of utmost important in my philosophy about teaching in and through the arts. With extensive training in Social Emotional Learning, Restorative Justice Practices, and Constructivist Focused Inquiry-Based Learning, I have taught students in a myriad of under-served urban settings, including youth in the San Francisco Juvenile Justice system. I have also trained faculty and staff of the Juvenile Justice/Delinquency Prevention Commission of Alameda County. Most Recently, I have participated in training for Teaching Tolerance, a project of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Teaching Tolerance focuses on developing essential cultural competencies for working across learning contexts for the cultivation and development of anti-bias education.
Arts Integration is at the foundation of all my work. A professional actor and dancer from an early age, I discovered my identity and sense of wholeness through arts experiences. My professional studies led me to study at the Actors Studio and the Stella Adler Conservatory, while my studies in education led me to earn a Master’s of Education in Curriculum and Instruction – Integrated Teaching Through the Arts from Lesley University. In that program, I learned “strategies for integrating arts into the curriculum to meet the needs of all learners.” In 2011, I was in the first cohort of arts educators to earn an Arts Integration Specialist Certificate from the Alameda County Office of Education. In that program, I learned that teaching in and through the arts is about developing the full creative potential in every student. The arts are essential, as they impact student motivation, attitudes, and attendance. Research shows that increased access and involvement in arts education encourages students to succeed in school, in work, in life. I work to ensure that the next generation receives a well-rounded education that includes the arts.