Saturday, November 15, 2008

Who We Are: Meet Donnie Norton


Donald M. Norton, M.Ed. holds a Masters degree in Creative Arts in Learning from Lesley University. Over an eight year career he has taught the third, fourth, and fifth grades, as well as English to ninth, tenth, eleventh, and twelfth graders. Currently Donnie teaches fifth grade English and history at the Abigail Adams Middle School in Weymouth, Massachusetts. Having just completed directing Weymouth High School's senior class musical, he understands the profound impact the arts have on students of all age and ability levels. As a teacher, singer, actor, dancer, storyteller, poet, and father, the arts are an everyday part of Donnie's world.

He has recently developed a teacher-training course called "The Blossoming Learner" that focuses on practical ways to integrate the arts into the everyday learning process. It is designed to expose educators to various arts modalities in a non-threatening way, making it possible for any teacher to immediately bring the arts into the classroom community. Giving teachers the confidence to use the arts as an instrument of education, even if they have had no previous training in these art forms, is the goal of "The Blossoming Learner."

Donnie believes that the abilities to be introspective and empathetic are the two most humanizing qualities we possess. In order to create better lifelong learners, students must be provided with a skill set wheel complete with introspection and empathy cogs. This can be accomplished by integrating the arts into the learning
process.

Photo Credit: Photo by IrishEyes Photography

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