EASTCONN Where Learning Comes to Life

ACT Teacher Selected for Institute at The National Gallery of Art

Stacy VocasekWillimantic CT, August 10, 2018 – EASTCONN’s Arts at the Capitol Theater (ACT) English and Creative Writing teacher Stacy Vocasek was one of only 52 participants selected to take part in the 2018 National Gallery of Art Teacher Institute on Storytelling and the Visual Arts held in Washington, D.C., in July.

The six-day seminar brought together educators from across the country to explore the connection of storytelling to learning, and the ways teachers can use art objects with storytelling activities in the classroom.

“I now have several new ideas for writing practice, as well as performance-based projects that I will implement this school year,” said Vocasek. “I will also share my new learning with my colleagues at ACT.”

The Institute’s program emphasized creative writing, theatrical dimensions of storytelling and interpreting narrative works of art. An intensive hands-on tutorial allowed teachers to tell their own stories about art by creating short electronic movies. The program closed with a concert that demonstrated how music can be used to convey values, immortalize historic events, or deliver coded messages.

The 2018 Teacher Institute was supported by generous gifts from the Park Foundation, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, the Sara Shallenberger Brown Fund, the PaineWebber Endowment, and the Annetta J. and Robert M. Coffelt Sr. and Robert M. Coffelt Jr. Endowed Fellowship.

Vocasek was awarded a Coffelt fellowship.

For more than 25 years the Gallery’s Teacher Institute has offered educators the opportunity for intellectual renewal and professional exchange with colleagues in a museum setting. To date, more than 2,600 teachers have participated in the program. To learn more, visit www.nga.gov/teacherinstitute.

ACT, a magnet high school housed in Willimantic’s historic Capitol Theater, enrolls approximately 120 students from 24 towns in its NEASC-accredited, interdisciplinary and arts-infused academic program with a 96% graduation rate. Once enrolled, ACT students select a major focus area from among five arts disciplines that include acting, dance, theater production (lighting/set design/set construction/costuming), audio/video and creative writing. To learn more, visit www.eastconn.org/act.

EASTCONN, which administers ACT, is a public, non-profit Regional Educational Service Center that has been serving the education needs of northeastern Connecticut’s schools and communities since 1980. Learn more at www.eastconn.org.