AUGUSTA — The Maine Arts Commission recently announced the selection of five new artists to its Teaching Artist Roster.

The roster, launched in 2014 and available at mainearts.maine.gov, includes Maine artists whose work reflects their expertise and commitment to providing learning opportunities for students and/or teachers in Pre-K-12 educational settings, according to a news release from the commission. The Teaching Artists are available to conduct learning opportunities for students in school settings, as well as for community organizations that offer arts education.

“Data shows time and again that learning in and through the arts improves student learning in all areas, which is why the commission is committed to encouraging schools to partner with teaching artists,” said Argy Nestor, the commission’s director for arts education, according to the release. “We’re excited to now have 56 outstanding Maine artists dedicated to sharing their skills with learners across the state.”

The new additions to the roster are Bridget Matros, of Belfast, visual arts and music; Brigitte Paulus, of Portland, dance and theater; Jeffrey Weinberger, of Liberty, music; Kimberly Bentley, of South Portland, visual arts; and Rachel Robbins, of Whitefield, literary arts. Full biographies and contact details are available on the commission’s webiste. The commission encourages educators and those responsible for arts education to utilize the roster by communicating directly with the Teaching Artists through the website.

The Arts Commission defines Teaching Artists as professional artists who are dedicated to lifelong learning and arts education, have made it an integral part of their professional practice, and who have cultivated skills as educators in concert with their skills as artists. The successful applicants demonstrated mastery of an artistic discipline; knowledge and expertise in sequential arts instruction; good communication skills; planning and organizational ability; and an understanding of PK-12 learners, according to the release.

The arts commission’s roster now includes 56 artists in disciplines such as music, dance, theater, visual arts, media arts, and literary arts. Applications from artists to be considered for inclusion on the roster are accepted only two times per year.

For more information about the program and to access the application, visit mainearts.maine.gov.

For more information about the arts commission’s programs, contact Argy Nestor at [email protected] or 287-2713.

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