Teaching through the artistry of Story

Professional development and workshops

 As a Teaching Artist, Sheila brings her experience and expertise as an Entrepreneur, Teacher, and Performer to schools, businesses, churches, and community groups. From branding consultations to employee coaching, from teaching teachers to making students into storytellers, Sheila guide her audience on a journey of personal and professional growth using a hands-on approach and real-life examples in workshops, classes, courses and consultations.  Below is a sample list of workshops Sheila offers.  All programs can be adapted for either full or half day presentations.  Sheila is always open to development of commissioned training programs to meet the your specific organizational needs.  


“A good workshop is one that not only adds value, but with takeaways that are immediately applicable and usable. Sister Arnold’s workshop was GREAT!!! She is personable and clear with a training (Zoom) that most of us are actively using right now. This was a good one…Thanks”  – Ivory D. – CABS Workshop on Zoom.

Professional Development and Workshops

“Being History:  Character Interpretation – a Teaching/Presentation Method”

Character Interpretation is a wonderful teaching and presentation method that is often used in museums for students and adults.  Learn how to adapt this great method for a) you as a teacher to present information, and b) for your students as a presentation method.  


“Collaboration:  Increasing Parental Involvement Strategies and Activities”

Based in review of some of the most recent literature and research this professional development session uses brain storming, problem solving and challenging open-ended questions, to create parental involvement strategies and ends  with a look at arts-focused activities to encourage parental involvement.  


“Healing the Sting:  Teaching African-American History and Slavery to Culturally Diverse Audiences”

This training session takes an intimate look at the way you teach African-American History, gives personal hints to use in the classroom (tailored to each teacher), encourages discussion about teaching techniques that work, and provides solid information about slavery in America.  


”Mother Goose?  Fairy Tales?  Really?!?”

 Learn how nursery rhymes can increase vocabulary, prepare students for common references, teach social and interpersonal concepts, and inspire the desire to learn more.  The old has a chance to become new and help elementary students meet English and Writing national and state standards.  1 – 2 hours.


“Sit Tight on your Biscuits”:  Creative and effective ways to create a learning environment with children

Sheila Arnold ‘s programs with elementary and preschool students are filled with loads of fun, but that fun is done in such a controlled manner that she has been asked often to write down her techniques. Learn those same techniques and how they translate to your classroom. 


“Still’s Underground Railroad”

William Still, a prominent Conductor of the Pennsylvania Underground Railroad, wrote the definitive book about the lives of persons “stealing themselves” away to freedom.  Teachers will learn about this little known abolitionists, and participate in interactive teaching strategies to use in the classroom.  For Teachers on the Eastern Seaboard, stories will be shared from their state, and sometimes their city or town.  


“Storytelling as a Technique in Teaching”

 Learn some of the techniques of storytelling along with concrete ways of quickly applying these techniques in your classroom setting.  This training session will include group interaction and practice, as well as provides a list of useful resources for the classroom.  If you already tell stories, why not add to your present repertoire and assist others who may have some trepidations. 


”WriteOn and WriteUp”:  Writing Workshop for Teachers

This workshop will focus on the following:  Warm Up Writing, every day writing (including free and directed writing), moving senses to story writing, creative writing (prompts, hints and games), personal writing.  Participants will be encouraged to try various types of writing, to share strategies that have worked for each other, along with reviewing recent writing programs, scholarly research and literature.  

Folktales, Fairytales & Social Justice

Fairytales can engage us in the imaginary and hopeful.  Folktales gives us glimpses into cultural thoughts and norms.  This session will combine hopes and cultural thoughts to address social justice issues, like suicide, PTSD, poverty, immigration, race reconciliation, etc.  Hear a story combining fairy tale and a current issue, and then join a group discussion and brainstorm how we can use the oldest stories as vehicles for awareness and change.


Developing a Thematic Program

Sheila Arnold shares how she develops themed Summer Reading Programs, School Performances to market, Christian storytelling programs, and getting ideas from mind to performance.  If you have a program you are working on and want suggestions, she will provide guidance.  Sheila encourages interested participants to take some time and think of stories for the theme, “Fizz, Boom, Read”, which will be our starting point.


Healing the Divides through Storytelling

Storytelling is a surprisingly flexible tool. It can entertain, inspire, inform, and even heal. Building on the use of storytelling as a healing practice in communities, schools, health care facilities, and religious institutions, Sheila will demonstrate how stories can help us heal divides and create a more inclusive and equitable world. The session will begin with a conversation-sparking story, then Sheila will teach participants how to find stories, use them to facilitate discussion, and create spaces where they can be received.