Cultural Arts Programs

The Arts at McDougle Elementary School

Since the school opened in 1996, MES has demonstrated its strong commitment to the arts, which we view as an important aspect of making this mission and vision a reality for all students. The MES arts curriculum is based on the Common Core and NC Essential Standards. The MES arts faculty - including Alice Zincone as the art teacher and Chelsea Kutner as the music teacher - plan and implement an academically engaging and enriching arts curriculum for the entire student body.

To enhance and complement the school’s arts curriculum, the MES PTA Cultural Arts Program aims to sponsor supplemental arts programming. During the 2019-2020 school year, thanks to the Dolphin community's generosity along with funding provided by the Orange County Arts Commission, the MES PTA Cultural Arts Program coordinated three high-quality, diverse professional performances, which were presented to all MES students at assemblies that took place during the school day.

This year, like so many other initiatives, the MES PTA Cultural Arts Committee reimagined how it could supplement the arts virtually. We are grateful for many years of OCAC grant funding support, which has enabled the PTA to consistently offer supplemental arts instruction to MES students. We thank them for helping us to fund this year's poetry residency with local poet Philip Shabazz for all MES 5th grade students. More information about the Orange County Arts Commission is available at More information about Mr. Shabazz is available on his website at

For questions and opportunities regarding the cultural arts at MES, please reach out to Daniela Miteva at

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Phillip Shabazz Poetry Residency, May 3rd - May 7th, 2021

McDougle Elementary School, 5th grade, Chapel Hill, NC

I will remember….

By Ayla Jennings (Ms. Hunt class)

I will remember Rosa Parks every time I take a seat

I’ll think of Martin Luther King jr. every time people hear me speak

I’ll think of Hillary Clinton every time I’m overheard

And I’ll remember Mahatma Gandhi every time my future seems blurred I will remember Nelson Mandela when I push forward

I will remember Kamila Harris when my society's future is altered

I’ll remember Barack Obama when I feel our scars start to heal

And I will think of Abraham Lincoln when I have to deal with a crazy ordeal I’ll remember Albert Einstein when I make a new discovery

And I will remember Harriet Tubman when I help others with their journey I’ll think of Helen Keller when I feel things with the heart

And I will remember Isaac Newton when I figure out something quite smart I’ll think of Frederick Douglass when I stand up for what’s right

And I’ll think of Amelia Earhart when I lift into flight

I will remember Buddha when I feel at peace

And I’ll remember Malala Yousafzai when I feel like I’m finally starting to make a crease I’ll remember Anne Frank when I feel like I have to hide

And I will think of this world because here my opportunities are wide


By Dimitri Koistinen (Ms. Maher Class)

Hope is like a new day

And a fresh new spray.

Hope is like a light

And a won fight.

Hope is like a friendly ghost

And a broken post.

Hope is like a bubble

And not being in trouble.

Hope is like a perfect pitch

And a shallow ditch.

Hope is like perfection

And a man to give directions.

Hope is like an awesome rap

And a treasure map.

Hope is like an amazing dance

And a winning chance.

2019-2020 Performing Arts Performances

Mike Wiley’s Tired Souls, October 23, 2019, one show for 3rd-5th grade students.

Genre: historical drama

Description: Tired souls begins with the day Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a city bus to a white man - the catalyst that inspired Montgomery’s historical bus boycott. Tired Souls also introduces audiences to others who came before Mrs. Parks, who were so instrumental in lighting a fire under the Civil Rights movement and changing the course of U.S. history forever.

This program is supported by the Orange County Arts Commission and the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.

Charles Pettee, Catch the Bluegrass Bug, February 12, 2020, one show for K-2nd grade students

Genre: bluegrass music performance

This multi-talented musician employs banjo, harmonica, guitar, mandolin, voice and a variety of hats which introduces you to the wonderful tapestry of sounds that make up the music of the Carolinas: music of the Pilgrims, native Americans, African-Americans , Piedmont Blues, Gospel and Bluegrass. There is never a dull moment as Mr. Pettee switches songs or hats, encouraging rhythmic clapping and spontaneous discussion throughout the show.

This program is supported by the Orange County Arts Commission and the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.

Curious Theatre Collective’s Creekside: The Journey of a Young Activist, March 4, 2020, two shows, all students

Genre: interactive theatrical performance

The show tells the story of Mia, a young girl who discovers something wrong with the creek behind her house and sets out to make it better with the help of four famous female environmentalists who happen to wander by. Through music, audience participation, and narrative, students dive into concepts of environmental justice, interconnectedness, youth activism, and responsibility. This show was developed with support from the Orange County Arts Commission.

This program is supported by the Orange County Arts Commission and the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.

MES_MikeWiley_promotional flyer.pdf
MES_CuriousTheatreCollective_promotional flyer.pdf
MES_CharlesPettee_promotional flyer.pdf