Meet Our Teacher
Mandy Metrano started her second year as the Monhegan School teacher in August 2016. She is a familiar face, having lived both year-round and seasonally on Monhegan since 1996. She is a Portland, Maine native and is no stranger to gale force winds or snow drifts as high as rooftops, and can suit up and brave the elements, whatever they may be.
Mandy graduated cum laude from the University of Southern Maine with a BA in Fine Arts in 2001 and returned to USM to complete the Arts Education program in 2012. Mandy did her student teaching in Portland Public Schools and worked as an ed tech for 9 years prior to her teaching position at the Monhegan School, in both general and special education programs.
Mandy is a strong advocate of the arts in all its forms and helped set up an arts fund, The Monhegan School Youth Arts Initiative, to bring visiting artists of a variety of disciplines to work with the students. Last year visiting artists taught students about Middle Eastern geography, dance and culture; printmaking; scriptwriting (filming their own Lego movie); papercutting; and poetry. During the Spring Field Trip to Portsmouth, NH, students were able to play a variety of instruments and learn about analog and digital recording in a professional recording studio and had an artist talk with Allison May Kiphuth at her exhibition at Nahcotta Gallery.
This year the Monhegan School received an Arts Learning Grant through the Maine Arts Commission and brought dancers and musicians from Belfast Flying Shoes out for a four day dance and music residency. There was a culminating community contra dance showcasing all of the work the students did. It was a packed house with tourists and year-rounders alike stomping and swinging around the schoolhouse.
Mandy is working in collaboration with MCMA in Rockland to bring virtual music classes to the students for the second half of the year. More visiting artists are scheduled through the year as well, including an island potter, a bird sculptor, and a visual artist and educator who draws inspiration from beaches, tide pools and harbors.