Little Artists Preschool – Lead Teacher
Mr. Lane is excited to be joining the staff at Multnomah Arts Center as we launch the innovative Little Artists Preschool! Derek brings over twenty years of teaching experience to Little Artists and has taught at every age level (Pre-K, Elementary, Middle, High School, University, and Seniors) along the way. However, he has specialized in working with 4 to 5 year-olds over the years – working as a lead teacher in preschools in Seattle, San Diego, and now, Portland.
Derek has also nurtured hundreds of young artists at countless arts camps, summer camps, and as a director of children’s theatres in Seattle, Boston, and San Diego. “My classrooms have always been Arts-focused. Music, singing, dance, play, and theatre are hallmarks of these classrooms as I help prepare students for kindergarten, elementary school, and a long life as an artist. Along with the arts, I also employ Multiple Intelligences practices in my learning centers, and borrow from Reggio Emilia teaching philosophies of the environment as a teacher, respect for the young learner/artist, and being a co-collaborator with the students.” He was a tenured Associate Professor of Theatre Arts at Central Washington University and has taught theatre and education courses at CWU, Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, Clark University, and San Diego State University. Many of Derek’s former students are middle school and high school theatre and art teachers in Oregon and Washington.
Mr. Lane has training both as an educator (M.A. in Teaching from Western Oregon University and a M.A. in Child Drama from San Diego State University) and as an artist (M.F.A. in Theatre Design and Technology from San Diego State University and a B.A. in Theatre Performance from Seattle Pacific University), and holds a certified teaching license from the state of Oregon. As a performer he was a professional actor and comedian for many years including training with Second City and Improv Olympic in Chicago. As a professional theatre designer he has garnered over 20 design awards from the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival for his scenery, lighting, costume, and sound designs. Derek has also designed for television shows (USA network), amusement parks (Sea World), parades, and “half-time” shows (Holiday Bowl). He loves singing, dancing, and all sports. His wife Jo is the theatre teacher at Roosevelt HS in North Portland and he has a 15 year-old daughter, DeLancey, who is a budding actress/singer/dancer/scientist and nerd fighter! (Doesn’t actually fight nerds – fights for them!)