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March 11, 2015

Reflections on an Artist Residency in Circus Arts

"A big part for me as a teacher is building perseverance in students, whether we're in a gym learning a new circus trick, or we're trying a math problem back in the classroom. I want them to see that perseverance can often lead to success." — Derek DeGear, Teacher, Coal Tyee Elementary

Vesta Entertainment, a professional stilt and contemporary circus troupe on Vancouver Island, recently completed an artist residency at Coal Tyee Elementary in Nanaimo, BC. Check out this short video they created about the experience from the perspectives of both the teachers and students involved.

"It just made me proud of myself. I showed my mom what I can do." — Student, Coal Tyee Elementary

"I liked the hula hoops because I learned more than I could do before." — Student, Coal Tyee Elementary

Vesta Entertainment is one of the talented artists and groups listed in ArtStarts' Artists in the Classroom Directory, an online resource where teachers can discover professional artists available to work with young people across BC. Browse the Artists in the Classroom Directory online at

This project was supported by an Artists in the Classroom grant disbursed by ArtStarts in Schools and funded by BC Arts Council and the Province of BC. Artists in the Classroom grants bring professional artists into schools for unique learning experiences. Grants of up to $3,500 for small- to medium-scale projects or up to $10,000 for large-scale projects are available. Apply for Artists in the Classroom grants to work with professional artists in your own school! The next deadline to apply is May 28, 2015. Learn more at


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