My teaching practice began as a stage manager with an Irish theater-in-education company. I devised and facilitated learning workshops to creating learning spaces around the plays we produced. I worked with a variety of children and youth in different public school settings, and with the Irish Traveller community on their halting sites.
I was employed for over two years as a youth and outreach coordinator at an American university museum. The museum is a very public space. It is also under constant surveillance. Creating an environment where my students felt free to make art was critical to our success. I worked closely with museum staff to this end, building strategic alliances to make the program as inclusive and open as possible.
Learning through the arts is always my focus. I begin every lesson by asking the students to consider the learning space as "theirs", to build that civic connection and cultivate collective ownership. Interdisciplinary collaboration is also central to how I approach teaching. Co-teaching with educators from other disciplines, and participatory action with students shape my style. I recruited professional artists and trained pre-service general education teachers and STEM educators to work in the museum setting.