SANTA MONICA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The GRAMMY Museum® is pleased to announce Lois MacMillan of South Middle School in Grants Pass, Ore., as the recipient of the 2018 Jane Ortner Education Award. The award honors K-12 academic teachers who use music in the classroom as a powerful educational tool. MacMillan will receive an honorarium and will be recognized later this year at the annual GRAMMY Museum Gala in Los Angeles. South Middle School will also receive a grant.
"The Recording Academy's GRAMMY Museum created this award to showcase the extraordinary influence that music can have in teaching subjects of all varieties," said Scott Goldman, Executive Director of the GRAMMY Museum. "The Jane Ortner Educator Award celebrates educators who are able to execute cutting-edge lesson plans, creating a positive influence on their students through the power of music."
The Jane Ortner Education Award celebrates educators who integrate music into English, social studies, math, science, and foreign language instruction. Applicants submit one original unit of lessons that incorporates music, which is then reviewed by a panel of teachers and education administrators and evaluated upon the creativity, teachability, transferability, and level of student engagement.
MacMillan's submission for the Jane Ortner Education Award was an extensive unit entitled Rappin' History: Composing Historical Raps in the Classroom (with Lessons Integrating Historical Raps from Hamilton). The curriculum, which can be accessed at JaneOrtnerEducationAward.org, contains numerous lessons linking the Founding Era to the GRAMMY®-winning Broadway musical "Hamilton." Aiming to harness the excitement of her students, MacMillan tasked students with creating original rap songs as an extension of primary and secondary source analysis and annotation. It was praised by the judging panel for being an innovative, engaging, and comprehensive exploration of key events and figures. This is the first year in which a monetary honorarium has been given as part of the Jane Ortner Education Award. In addition to the honorarium and grant for South Middle School, MacMillan received two tickets to the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards® in New York this past January, including travel and accommodations.
"I am honored to receive the Jane Ortner Education Award," said MacMillan. "Integrating 'Hamilton' and hip-hop into my classroom has been so valuable–it provides boundless energy and helps students unlock new parts of their minds and souls."
"Lois embodies the term 'lifelong learner' and her dedication to our profession, along with staying current with best practices in the classroom, make her a masterful teacher," said South Middle School principal Jeff Weiss. "Lois' commitment to history, her students, her colleagues, her school, and our district is second to none. She is a national board-certified teacher and has received the Oregon History Teacher of the Year award. We have been so fortunate at South Middle School to have this type of high-caliber teacher at our school teaching our kids and being a leader for our staff."
Building on the Museum's successful education programs and initiatives, the Jane Ortner Education Award for teachers and the Jane Ortner Artist Award were established by the GRAMMY Museum in partnership with Charles Ortner—entertainment attorney, Museum Board member, and husband of the late Jane Ortner, a devoted and beloved public school teacher who valued music as a tool for teaching academic subjects and building confidence and community.
Applications for the 2019 Jane Ortner Education Award will be accepted beginning June 15, 2018.
ABOUT LOIS MACMILLAN
Lois MacMillan, eighth grade U.S. history teacher at South Middle School in Grants Pass, Ore., has been teaching for nearly 30 years. She has received numerous awards—notably the Gilder Lehrman Institute Oregon History Teacher of the Year award. Every summer Lois is engaged as a master teacher to facilitate professional development workshops for educators from around the country and abroad. Lois has led sessions at Yale University, the University of Virginia, Corpus Christi College at the University of Oxford (England), and many other institutions. An avid swimmer, Lois also coaches several sports teams at South Middle School and is an adviser to extracurricular student clubs.
ABOUT THE JANE ORTNER EDUCATION AWARD
The Jane Ortner Education Award for teachers is unique in that it celebrates educators who integrate music into English language arts, social studies, math, science, and foreign language instruction. The program offers free professional development for teachers and a free online library of music-integrated curricula. Participants recognize that making music a central part of the educational experience fosters the development of a broad range of social skills, including creative expression, confidence-building, collaboration, and social responsibility. Previous recipients include California educators Erica Amann (El Dorado High School), Jonathan Bernal (Topaz Preparatory Academy), Sunshine Cavalluzzi (El Dorado High School), Bianca Wilson Cole (Washington Prep High School), Kylie Ko (Mark Keppel Elementary School), and Nicole Naditz (Bella Vista High School), and Nathan Strayhorn (Fayetteville High School) of Fayetteville, Ark.
ABOUT THE GRAMMY MUSEUM
Established in 2008 as a partnership between the Recording Academy™ and AEG, the GRAMMY Museum is a nonprofit organization dedicated to cultivating a greater understanding of the history and significance of music. Paying tribute to our collective musical heritage, the Museum explores and celebrates all aspects of the art form—from the technology of the recording process to the legends who've made lasting marks on our cultural identity. In 2017, the Museum integrated with its sister organization, the GRAMMY Foundation®, to broaden the reach of its music education and preservation initiatives. As a unified organization, today, the GRAMMY Museum fulfills its mission of making music a valued and indelible part of our society through exhibits, education, grants, and public programming.