Professional Development

Opera Ignite supports teachers in their understanding of the value and methodology of arts-integrated learning. Through either one-on-one support or in a group setting, teachers discover their ability to lead music, drama and movement experiences in the classroom. Professional development may occur as an ongoing part of a classroom residency or as a one-time session.


How To Build Your Own Opera

Teachers of young children learn how to add music, drama and movement to their favorite picture books to create their very own opera! Discover how to engage children in literary elements such as setting, character, mood and sequence of events through interactive storytelling techniques. Develop effective props and costumes to encourage dramatic retelling of the story. Learn how to incorporate child-led ideas and details into the story through effective open-ended questioning. Discover how the arts experiences can support specific literacy, STEM or social-emotional learning goals.


Prior to the four-session “An Opera is a Story” classroom residency, preschool teachers attend a professional development session to identify the arts strategies that will be modeled by the teaching artist throughout the workshops. Strategies include the use of musical instruments for classroom management, modeling character voices, exploring the full vocal range, teacher-in-role and leading creative movement in response to music. At the end of the residency, teachers are asked to develop a lesson plan of their own that demonstrates the use of one of the arts strategies they observed during the residency.

A Work of Art in the Classroom

Discover how a work of art can be a window to vast world of learning. Opera Ignite teaches educators how to dig deeply into a piece of music, theater or dance by asking rich open-ended questions, engaging students in art-making, exploring historical context and reflecting on their experience. Teacher help to develop a line of inquiry into the artwork based on specific curricular learning goals.