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Salisbury Academy teacher, class invited to Ford’s Theatre initiative

Ford’s Theatre

WASHINGTON — Heather Coulter, a teacher at Salisbury Academy, and her eighth-grade students were selected to participate in the Lincoln Online Oratory Project, a national initiative of Ford’s Theatre.

The project is designed to help educators introduce the fundamentals of public speaking into the classroom and provides an opportunity for students to put these skills into practice.

Through LOOP, Salisbury Academy students will participate in three virtual lessons with a Ford’s Theatre teaching artist via video conference.

Students will create and record a video of one of Abraham Lincoln’s speeches. The video will be shared with a national audience on the Ford’s Theatre YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/fordstheatre.

Classes will share their experiences with Ford’s Theatre on Twitter during a “Virtual Festival” on April 15, 2019. During the 2018-19 school year, classrooms in 12 states will participate in the Lincoln Online Oratory Project.

Through oratory education programs like LOOP, teachers are better able to address the often-overlooked speaking and listening components of Common Core and state-specific standards in literacy.

Additionally, through the study of President Lincoln’s oratory, students develop the valuable life skill of confident and effective public speaking, develop their sense of civic duty, and build a broader understanding of Lincoln’s historical significance.

“The Lincoln Online Oratory Project is an exciting opportunity for Ford’s Theatre to support students no matter where they are located,” said Cynthia Gertsen, associate director for arts education at Ford’s. “LOOP allows students across the country to share their public-speaking skills and demonstrate the far-reaching and long-lasting power of President Lincoln’s oratory.”

Schools and teachers interested in learning more about the Lincoln Online Oratory Project should visit www.fords.org/for-teachers/programs/oratory/lincoln-online-oratory-project/ or reach out to education@fords.org.

Videos from previous LOOP participants can be found at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLK40ConphajsvobllT7ZjRuzKMswcfRPP.

Ford’s Theatre education programs are supported by lead education sponsor BP America with additional support from Bloomberg Philanthropies, Comcast NBCUniversal, D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Institute of Museum and Library Services and Southern Company.

One of the most visited sites in the nation’s capital, Ford’s Theatre reopened in 1968, more than 100 years after the assassination of Lincoln. Operated through a partnership between Ford’s Theatre Society and the National Park Service, the theater offers ways to explore and celebrate Lincoln’s ideals and leadership principles: courage, integrity, tolerance, equality and creative expression.

In the past decade, the mission of Ford’s Theatre Society expanded to include education as a central pillar. This led to the creation and construction of the Center for Education and Leadership, which opened in February 2012.

For more information on Ford’s Theatre and the Ford’s Theatre Society, please visit www.fords.org.

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