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5th grade students at the EN WHite school perform their original play Independence, part of a Living History residency

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ECT Teaching Artist Axel Cruz works with families in the foster care system as part of our collaboration with Treehouse.

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Teachers enrolled in ECT's Institute for Arts Integration learn to embody vocabulary as a strategy for teaching.

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Holyoke 5th grader performs in an orginal living history play on the American Revolution as part of an ECT residency.

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Joyful, engaged learning!

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Sullivan School (Holyoke) students rehearse a scene in "The 7 Habits of Effective Readers," developed by ECT with HPS.

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ECT Teaching Artist Kate Carreiro explores the storybook Iggy Peck Architect through drama at the Holyoke Public Library

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Ramona Lisa Alexander in ECT's original production: Sojourner's Truth "I will shake every place I go to"

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Grade 2 students in a From Page to Stage: Literacy through the Arts residency at the Kelly Full Service Community School

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Holyoke Middle School Students perform The Tempest on the outdoor stage at the Renaissance Center (Acting Shaespeare)

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Holyoke Grade 2 students enact "The Spiffiest Giant in Town" Comprehensive Literacy through the Arts)

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Ready for the stage!

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1st grade students in character as Tough Boris, the pirate, by Mem Fox. Photo credit: C. Hamilton Quill

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ECT Teaching Artist, Tony Jones, leading an Open Classroom Family Literacy event at Metcalf Preschool, Holyoke.

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"Oh happy dagger! This is my sheath: there rust, and let me die." - Juliet in Acting Shakepeare. Photo credit R. Kuhn.

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ECT Teaching Artist Kate Carreiro teaching the Science of Sound, Northampton. Photo credit: Priscilla Kane Hellweg.

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Living History Unit on Immigration, Holyoke. Students engaged! Photo credit: Melissa Penley Redwin.

Enchanted Circle Theater engages, enhances, and inspires learning through the arts. We are the "antidote to the dropout rate!"

Enchanted Circle Theater meets an urgent and essential need in schools today. We engage students. We empower teachers. We inspire learning.

Enchanted Circle Theater offers a way into reading, writing, and research that makes learning relevant and rewarding. We help students succeed in math, science, reading comprehension, and in life. We offer engagement in the creative process, which serves as prevention against truancy and motivates learning.

ECT has been called the "antidote to the dropout rate," because when we are in the classroom, attendance records go up, behavior issues go down, and students experience academic success.

Here’s how the students and teachers we work with express the impact of ECT’s work:

“You made me WANT to come to school!” ~ 5th grade student

“I’ve never worked so hard in my whole life. I felt like quitting lots of times, and I’ve never been so proud of myself, as I was today after our performance.” ~ 7th grade student

“The physical movement really helped get the students focused. They seemed to absorb the science content in a different way. This was a fantastic learning experience.” ~ 4th grade teacher

“Enchanted Circle Theater brings high quality arts education experiences to students by training classroom teachers to use the arts in their day-to-day teaching. Learning through the arts can help level the playing field for youngsters from disadvantaged circumstances.” ~ Administrator,

"Many of the students I work with have never felt success, and you made them feel safe and empowered.” ~ 5th grade teacher

“Students that were struggling readers became narrators and learned to read with ease. They learned how to work together cooperatively, and the value in supporting each other. This was a tremendous learning experience for all of us.” ~ 4th grade teacher

For 38 years, Enchanted Circle Theater has been transforming children's lives with our creative education programs. We are the regional leader in the field of arts integration, using theater arts as a dynamic teaching tool on the stage, in the classroom, and in the community.

In just the past year, ECT has worked with:

  • 40 different schools in the region
  • 83 classrooms
  • 300 teachers, paraprofessionals, and administrators
  • 1,870 students
  • 45 community partners in social service organizations

"The beauty of Enchanted Circle's work is that it crosses the curriculum, it is not (only) the areas, it is science, math, social studies and English language arts. This work also addresses many of the students' social and emotional needs. For students to feel such joy, engagement and success in their day is our goal and one this is often difficult to reach with our typical approaches in schools." ~ Principal, Northampton, MA

Enchanted Circle Theater has earned area and national acclaim. In 2013, ECT was awarded 2013 NEPR Arts & Humanities award for Outstanding Organization. Also, in 2013, ECT Executive Director Priscilla Kane Hellweg was honored with the National Guild for Community Arts Education’s Milestone Award. In 2011, ECT received the prestigious Arts/Learning “Outstanding Collaborative in Theatre Award.” ECT has been awarded the Holyoke Chamber of Commerce Pacesetter Award for Non-Profit Operational Excellence. Priscilla Kane Hellweg, Executive Artistic Director of ECT, was named Outstanding Artist-in-Residence by the Massachusetts Alliance for Arts Education.

What does this mean and how can you help? ECT is a place where your contribution WILL make a significant difference. Enchanted Circle is an incredibly well-managed, innovative, nimble and fiscally responsible organization that works with the most underserved children and families in Western Massachusetts. 75% of every dollar raised goes directly to programming. The organizations and schools that we work with are only able to provide a portion of the funds needed. The rest comes from foundation grants and the generous support of donors like YOU. ECT needs your help more than ever as we continue to grow and expand our services throughout our region.

Your support is essential to the agency’s ability to creatively engage, enhance, and inspire learning for the children and families in our community. Every dollar counts.


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(413) 534-3789



Enchanted Circle Theater engages, enhances, and inspires learning through the arts. We are the "antidote to the dropout rate!"

EIN: 042685213

Reports: Guidestar


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