New Course: When Trauma Comes to School


Dr. Elena Perrello brings her passion and experience as a former School Counselor to offer a new course for teachers: EDPO 579: When Trauma Comes to School. If you are an educator who would like to learn more, please join us for our online course, EDPO 579: When Trauma Comes to School, which starts April 8th. Earn 4.5 CEUs, or the equivalent of 45 contact hours for recertification. Course approved by the Maine Department of Education.

An interesting post from Edutopia on The How and Why of Trauma-Informed Teaching

To Register or For More Information, Click Here.







Grace Jacobs takes gifted talented education to a global level

This is an article in Education First about one of our wonderful instructors, Grace Jacobs. Look at what she’s doing with her Gifted and Talented kids! Better yet, you can take her online course this summer: Social and Emotional Needs of Gifted Learners.…/ede-529-social-emotional…/Starts July 9th.


Social Justice in the Arts

There’s been such an assault on our sense of safety in our classrooms and schools in recent times with mass shootings – and a cacophany of opinions about what to do.  What do we do?  What would you do in this situation? Arm the teachers!  No, Only some of them!   Don’t take away our 2nd amendment!  Guns don’t kill people, people kill people!  Ban assault rifles!

There’s that. Then there’s what do you do in the aftermath?  It’s one thing to be prepared for a crisis, but when that crisis is over and we’re dealing with the damage that ensues, we’re in it for the long haul.  The time of grieving, healing, fixing, consoling, counseling, coaching, teaching is just beginning.  Parkland students were old enough to take their anger and frustration at the lack of response from our elected offiicials on themselves.  The Sandy Hook little ones never had that chance.

After the initial grief stages, there’s shock and awe and anger that is exacerbated by the lack of responsible action by adults to fix this.  There is post traumatic stress syndrome – and not only from the victim schools – but all that witnessed it. That’s all of us.  We’re all in this together.  We all have a responsibility, a moral obligation, and for god’s sake, we’re teachers, so of course we’re going to do all we can for our kids.

So many important questions have challenged us recently.  What do we, as teachers do, when our students want to walk out and protest, but are not allowed to by the school district?  How do we take care of ourselves in this insane time so that we can take care of our students?  How do we put our own mask on first?  And if we are arts teachers, what role can the arts play in the grieving process?  In social justice?  In social protest?  Where do we draw the line?  The lines?  The shapes?  The colors?  The feelings? How can we use our powerful voices as art and music and dance and theater teachers to help us all through this process?

A conversation with a great group of arts teachers in Maine, through the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative’s Winter Retreat, is happening Saturday, March 10.  I’ll keep you posted about the ideas discussed.

Teaching Children of Poverty: Why Culture Counts

Course Description:

This course will help educators, parents and professionals understand the complex challenges that poverty imposes on children’s capacity to learn and provides strategies for differentiating classroom instruction and providing opportunities to inspire and engage these students. Our schools are becoming more and more diverse, and educators are faced with economic, cultural and linguistic challenges in the classroom.  Topics on race, culture, diversity and poverty and the complexity of achievement gaps among racial and socioeconomic groups will be discussed.  An examination of the teacher’s own culture and its impact on student learning will be explored.  Finally, educators will learn to use tools and resources to foster and build resilience.

PLEASE NOTE: This is a hybrid course, meaning that for two weekends (at the beginning and end of the course), students will meet with the professor in person at a location above.  This course will run for 10 weeks. In between sessions, students will be in contact with the professor once weekly online.

“When there is an environment of learning, one demonstrating that all students can really achieve beyond mediocrity, then everyone benefits. Differentiating instruction for all students forces the standard to rise: Students find themselves doing more, and teachers find themselves raising the bar and preparing for success.”  —  Rosilyn M. Carroll, Center for Excellence in Urban Teaching at Hamline University, St. Paul, Minnesota.

To Register or Learn More, Click Here.


Meet the Professors, in Person!

New Hybrid Courses!

The pendulum has swung in the direction of online courses in recent years, even for the New England Institute.  After all, online courses offer more opportunity to more teachers who don’t have to travel to a specific location. There are pros and cons to learning online, and at the New England Institute, we try to make the experience as personable as possible, with weekly contact with instructors.

However, some teachers prefer to meet their colleagues and professors face-to-face, even if it is for only part of the time.  And some are willing to travel to the nearest destination to do so. You get to work with colleagues, build relationships, and ask questions of the professor, in person. As a result,  we have decided to add two hybrid courses: one meeting in Ellsworth, Maine and the other meeting in Hope, Maine. And they are two brand new courses, so we invite you to check them out!

Lindsay Pinchbeck, founding director of Sweettree Arts, will be teaching a course entitled:

Encountering the Arts: Choice, Voice and Creativity in the K-8 Classrroom.

You can join Lindsay in her very own school in Hope, Maine, and learn some wonderful strategies to incorporate into your classroom right away.  Drama, Movement, Music, Poetry, Storytelling, and Visual Arts will be integrated across content areas: Math, Science, Social Studies, Reading and Writing.


Stephen York is excited to be offering his brand new course,

Teaching Children of Poverty: Why Culture Counts 

and will be doing so starting in February at the Moore Community Center in Ellsworth.  This course will also be coming to Portland soon. Stephen is well known for his humor and intellect, and will certainly challenge your thinking about this sensitive subject!

So what, exactly, is a hybrid course and how does it work?  Participants will meet with their professors face-to-face for two weekend sessions: one at the beginning and one at the end of the course. Educators will work independently in the 10 week inter-session, and be in weekly contact with their professor. The first weekend will allow all participants to get to know each other, learn about the course, ask questions in person and start to build relationships:  a real plus to face-to-face sessions. Weekend sessions start after school on Friday so you don’t have to miss any time in the classroom or make substitute plans for your class, and on Saturday for a full day. You would leave the first weekend fully equipped to start your inter-session work, be in touch with the professor weekly by email or Google Classroom, then at the end of 10 weeks, come back for a second and final session in person, to share what you’ve learned, present projects, and celebrate your challenges and triumphs together. Following the second weekend, after witnessing what is usually a wonderful day of shared presentations by your colleagues, you will be expected to write a summative paper about what you’ve learned and the course experience.

Still think you need an ONLINE course?  No worries — there are plenty of other options on our course page on our website.  There’s something for everyone.

Happy Trails!!




Welcome, Sue Barre!


There is such a need for strong, quality mentorships in music education for new teachers, and we all know how difficult it can be to navigate those first years in the profession. Support and encouragement for new teachers from a veteran teacher who has been there and knows the ropes can make all the difference between success and failure as a music teacher. That’s why, when the New England Institute was asked if we could design a course on teacher mentorship, we jumped at the chance.  So please join us in welcoming Sue Barre, our newest faculty member who will be teaching the course, EDPU 620: Mentoring New Teachers in the Music Classroom (K-12) starting on October 30.  Sue is President of the Maine Music Educators Association, is a Teacher Leader with the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative and Music Educator at Waterville High School.  The course is designed to have veteran music educators work with new music teachers, while studying the research and best practices of quality teacher mentorship.  What better way to share your knowledge and passion for teaching AND get recertification credits (4.5 CEUs) at the same time?  Plus, you get to work with Sue Barre, who has been there, and definitely knows the ropes!

For more information on the course and how to enroll, click here.


Welcome Grace Jacobs!

We are happy to welcome aboard our newest faculty instructor, Grace Jacobs!

You can learn more about Grace’s impressive credentials as a Gifted and Talented specialist on our Team page. Grace will be teaching Gifted and Talented online courses and is offering one coming right up on October 2nd — EDE 527 Educating Gifted and Talented Learners. This is a foundational course for any teacher wishing to obtain their GT 690 endorsement, or for anyone interested in learning more about Gifted and Talented students.  You can receive 4.5 CEUs upon successful completion and take advantage of our flexible, teacher-friendly courses taught by practicing Maine educators.  For more information or to Register, click right here.

So join us! Or sign up for a different course — see our course page for current options.  And stay tuned for more coming soon!

Teacher Leaders in Arts Education!

The New England Institute has been partnering with the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative since 2010, and once again, has helped put on the Summer Institute. Teaching artists, and teachers of art, music, dance and theater have come together to share learning, creating and being together. It was a wonderful professional development opportunity. Some teachers enrolled in our course, Teacher Leaders in Arts Education. See more photos on Argy Nestor’s blogpost on the link below.

Maine Arts Leadership Initiative’s Summer Institute

MALI Reflections


Teacher Leaders in Arts Education

Just back from a Summer Institute for Arts Education Teachers from all over Maine!  A wonderful three days at Thomas College in Waterville, put on by the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative (MALI) was a rousing success. The New England Institute for Teacher Education partners with MALI to bring Art, Music, Dance and Drama teachers together for quality professional development in teacher leadership, assessment, creativity, STEAM and more. This will be the 7th year we have partnered, and the ripple effect, as these teachers return to their school districts to share what they’ve learned with colleagues, is far and wide. If you are an arts educator, you can apply to be a teacher leader next year. The networking alone is a great way to connect and make friends all over Maine.

For more information, click here: