Community Arts Partner

Participant Details

Community Arts Partner Name
Whistlestop Dance Company
Partner Type
Organization
Profile Photo
Individual Bio or
Organizational Statement
The Whistlestop Dance Company builds community through dance. It presents dance explorations, workshops, residencies, professional development, and performances so students from pre-kindergarten through university and beyond can discover the joy of movement; nurture creativity and artistry; develop flexibility, strength, endurance, and coordination; deepen learning; expand understanding and awareness; experience different learning styles; and communicate in new ways. We believe that anyone can dance and that there is a dance in everyone. The creative instinct is powerful and individual creativity should be nurtured; so barriers to participation should be eliminated so that all can engage equally and with respect.   Students in Whistlestop’s programs become proficient with using elements of dance and at creating, performing, and responding to dances, as well as building 21st Century Skills. Much of our integrated arts work in school settings focuses on pre-K through 5th grade. Whistlestop has developed many programs infusing the arts with curriculum, such as Dancing Science, Dancing Math, Dancing Poetry, Dancing Words, Dancing Times and Cultures. Our Family Dance Nights build community as students and families dance together. Our accessible approach to dance education has been effective in both south and north-end Seattle Public Schools, and other areas (e.g. Tacoma, Highline, Hawaii, Alaska).

Contact Information

First Name
Debbie
Last Name
Gilbert
Address
PO Box 20801
Address 2
City
Seattle
State
WA
Zip
98102
Phone
(206) 369-1511

Grade Levels Preferred

Grade Levels Preferred
K-2, 3rd - 5th

Artistic Disciplines

Type
Dance Integration, Creative Dance, Modern Dance, World Dance, Jazz Dance, Musical Theater Dance
Discipline
Dance

Experience

Previous School Partnerships
Dunlap Elementary Rogers Elementary Thornton Creek Elementary Hay Elementary
Other Trainings or Certifications
Arts Impact artist mentor training
Sample Lesson Description: Student / Classroom Residencies
Arts Integration/Infusion Residency:
  1. collaborative planning and lesson development with teaching artists and classroom teachers or specialists to create shared goals and practices, to ensure that there is an authentic connection between both the arts content and the subject area content, and to confirm that both are approached rigorously
  2. hands-on sessions with students (45 to 60 minutes per session in classrooms, 30-40 minutes with specialists, a minimum of 3 sessions, no maximum, daily/twice a week/weekly)
  3. sharing with the class, school, and/or community
  4. evaluation: informal assessment throughout the residency (teaching artists, classroom teachers, students), performance-based assessments (teaching artists, classroom teachers, students), summative assessment (teaching artists, classroom teachers, students, administration, families)
  Arts Integration/Infusion Residency with Family Event:
  1. collaborative planning and lesson development with teaching artists and classroom teachers or specialists to create shared goals and practices, to ensure that there is an authentic connection between both the arts content and the subject area content, and to confirm that both both are approached rigorously
  2. coordination and family education with PTSA
  1. hands-on sessions with students (45 to 60 minutes per session in classrooms, 30-40 minutes with specialists, a minimum of 4 sessions, no maximum, daily or two or three times per week)
  1. sharing with the families: students perform, teach their families, everyone dances together
  2. evaluation: informal assessment throughout the residency (teaching artists, classroom teachers, students), performance-based assessments (teaching artists, classroom teachers, students), summative assessment (teaching artists, classroom teachers, students, administration, families)
 
Sample Workshop Description: Teacher Professional Development
Arts Integration/Infusion Professional Development:
  1. collaborative planning and lesson development with teaching artists and classroom teachers or specialists, principals, and district staff to create shared goals and practices, to ensure that there is an authentic connection between both the arts content and the subject area content, and to confirm that both are approached rigorously
  2. series of workshops by teaching artists for teachers (monthly, by quarter, by semester)
  3. model teaching by teaching artist in the classroom, co-teaching: teacher and teaching artist, observing and assisting by teaching artist as teacher teaches
  4. de-brief, evaluation, development of next steps

Areas of Experience and Expertise

Approved Professional Development Provider
No
Approved Classroom Residency Provider
Yes
Experience with English Language Learners
Yes
Experience with Students in Special Education
Yes

Lesson Plan

Integrated Art
whistlestop_dance_company_sample_lesson_plan.docx
Cultural Art

Teaching Approach

Teaching Philosophy + Approach
We’ll begin by developing shared goals that support the classroom and school focus and priorities then use that as a basis for creating lessons in collaboration with the classroom teachers. We’ll ask questions like: What are your goals for the residency? What subject area would you like to see infused with dance? What do your students already know about the key concepts in the subject area? What dance experience do they already have? What do you think we should know about your students? What classroom norms and practices are important for us to know? When and where will we dance? What else do you think we should know? After collaborative planning, the classroom teacher is an active participant in the residency. Throughout the residency, the teaching artists check in with the classroom teacher and discuss discoveries and challenges. Collaboratively created criteria for performance-based assessments will be used by artists and teachers both formatively and summatively.
Curriculum Integration Possibilities
math, science, language arts, social studies, physical education, visual arts, performing arts
Special Skills and Areas of Expertise
special education students, students with disabilities, leading professional development with K-12 teachers
Testimonials from Schools
references: Beverly Harding Buehler, Arts Impact, Executive Director Bonnie Showers, Centrum, Program Manager, Creative Youth Development Tammi Mack, classroom teacher, Thornton Creek Elementary Annabel Garcia-Andresen, developmental preschool teacher, Dunlap Elementary Katie Brown, classroom teacher, Hay Elementary "XXXX hadn't participated in any dancing activities since he was in preschool but all that changed during your lessons. He participated in all of the lessons, learned the dance, danced on the stage and had a great time. Thank you Debbie!!! I think his parents were shocked and so excited about all of his growth." — Rogers kindergarten teacher “My students had a wonderful time. They were able to express themselves creatively during the school day. They learned how to work together and stay in personal space. They otherwise don’t have much opportunity to move their bodies during the school day.” — Dunlap pre-school teacher

Fees

Fees
negotiable

Images

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Gilbert and Petroff with Curtiss of Light Motion at Dancin’ Z Path, Olympic Sculpture Park
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Petroff and student during a Whistlestop residency
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students during a Whistlestop residency
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students during a Whistlestop residency
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Whistlestop and Light Motion in Wheeling, Careening, and Wandering through the EMP

Video

Video Description
Dancin’ Z Path performance by Light Motion and Whistlestop Dance Companies
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