Teacher Programs

About Teacher Programs

NCTA provides content rich professional development programs for K-12 educators and pre-service teachers in all fields. This includes face-to-face college level seminars, online courses, workshops, book groups, webinars, and among other opportunities. Below are current offerings both locally and nationwide:

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Edo Avant Garde: Discussion with Director & Classroom Curriculum

Edo Avant Garde: Discussion with Director & Classroom Curriculum
September 24, 2022
Film Screening: 12:30pm (Eastern Time)
Director Discussion & Curriculum Exploration: 2:00pm - 3:30pm (Eastern Time)
Online via Zoom

  Join us and our partners at The Ohio State University in a cross-curricular exploration of the fascinating visual stories created by the artists of Edo Japan (1603 – 1868). Through an investigation of the natural environments depicted in their folding screens and hanging scrolls, journey back in time to see how these audacious artists used both the materials of the day and their close observation skills to innovate through abstraction, minimalism, surrealism and the creation of illusions of 3-D. Using Linda Hoaglund's film documentary, Edo Avant Garde, this workshop will explore how the artists' visions were shaped by their reverence for nature and inspired by Buddhism and Shin-to animism. In addition to a Q&A with the film director, workshop facilitators will share relevant teaching tools and discuss ways to incorporate these topics in a variety of K-12 content areas.



Linda Hoaglund, Director Edo Avant-Garde 

• Kachina Leigh, NCTA Alumni 

• Angie Stokes, NCTA Alumni, Wayne Trace Junior/Senior High 


To register for this director & curriculum discussion, please click on the link here: http://go.osu.edu/ncta-sept24

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Great Books of East Asia - The Story of Hong Gildong


Great Books of East Asia - The Story of Hong Gildong

Thursday, October 27, 2022

6:00pm - 8:30pm (Eastern Time)

Join Pitt NCTA for the second program in our free online book discussion group series for K-12 educators. October’s Great Books of East Asia will provide you with the chance to go on a rollicking and picaresque adventure with Hong Gildong, the “Robin Hood of Korea.” The Story of Hong Gildong is one of the most popular and influential premodern Korean novels and remains important in Korean culture and literature. Join historian Dr. Minsoo Kang, translator of the recent Penguin Classics edition of The Story of Hong Gildong, who will help us to understand how the son of a nobleman becomes the leader of a band of honest outlaws meting out their own version of justice to the corrupt and entitled. Master NCTA teacher Anne Gerbner will provide some context for incorporating this story into the curriculum.  

The discussion on this Korean classic will take place via Zoom on October 27, 2022 at 6pm (Eastern Time).  Registrants will be sent a complimentary copy of Dr. Kang’s The Story of Hong Gildong as well as the graphic novel The Legend of Hong Kil Dong: Outlaw Hero of Korea (by Anne Sibley O’Brien).  

Pennsylvania teachers who complete this workshop will receive 2.5 Act 48 hours.  For teachers in other states, we can provide you with a certificate of completion. 

After you register, we will send you a confirmation email and will (depending on your response below) a complimentary copies of the books. Educators who complete the program will receive a Certificate Completion; Pennsylvania teachers will receive Act 48 hours.   You will also receive information on accessing the Zoom meeting for the workshop in a follow-up email. 

Registration deadline: October 3, 2022 
To register for this program, please visit this link: https://forms.gle/mMcUM76NHUXU4mch9

More About Great Books of East Asia Series

The Great Books of East Asia is a free book discussion series that will give K-12 educators a chance to delve deeply into important and foundational books from East Asia that they may know of or even teach about but may have never read in an enriching way.  Some books in the series are significant for understanding East Asia or are well known as important works of world literature. Others may not be familiar outside of a particular country but are a central part of that country’s literature.  Participants will be provided with complimentary copies of the books (in translation). The discussions will be led a faculty expert who will provide content and context on the work, and an NCTA master teacher who will discuss ways to incorporate the work into the classroom.

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Spinning Reels: Teaching Throne of Blood, Kurosawa's adaptation of Macbeth - An NCTA-SCREENSHOT: Asia Workshop for K-12 Educators

Spinning Reels: Teaching Throne of Blood, Kurosawa's adaptation of Macbeth 

A NCTA-SCREENSHOT: Asia Workshop for K-12 Educators

November 9 and 16, 2022 

7:00-9:30 p.m. EDT (6:00-8:30 p.m. Central Time) 
Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Kurosawa’s Throne of Blood and the creativity and power of adapting literature to film.
Join us for this two-evening workshop on the intersection of literature, film and theatre where we will explore Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Kurosawa’s Throne of Blood and the creativity and power of adapting literature to film.  Presentations by faculty experts and master NCTA teachers will include background on the warrior culture of Japan and the ways in which literature is adapted to film as well as interactive curriculum sessions. Learn more about Shakespeare’s tale of ambition and duplicity set in the ghostly world of feudal Japan. 
30 participants will receive a complimentary DVD of the film starring emblematic actor Toshiro Mifune. 
Offered to: Alabama, Delaware, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia 
To register for this program, please visit: https://forms.gle/1RrY7z83YMV6juKWA
If you have any questions, please contact Stephen Wludarski at swludarski@pitt.edu


Featured Speakers  

Associate Professor Ethan Segal (Michigan State University, History) 

Dr. Segal is an expert of pre-modern East Asia with a particular focus on Japan. He is also a regular NCTA Seminar Leader and presenter for NCTA. Topics of Professor Segal’s research and teaching include economic history, nationalism, women and gender, history and film, contemporary popular culture, and Japanese textbooks.  His publications appear in journals such as 歴史学研究 and Education About Asia as well as in edited volumes including Currents in Medieval Japanese History and Economic Thought in Early Modern Japan.  Professor Segal’s first book, Coins, Trade, and the State: Economic Growth in Early Medieval Japan, re-examines money, trade, and evolving medieval political and social institutions; it is available from Harvard University Press. 


Mr. Matthew Roberts (Pine-Richland High School, Pittsburgh, PA) 

Matt Roberts is the chair of the Social Studies department at Pine-Richland High School and has been teaching Asian Studies for the past fifteen years. He has been an NCTA alumnus since 2007, has participated in NCTA study tours to East Asia, and is a regular presenter for the Pitt NCTA coordinating site.He serves on the NCTA Board of Advisors with the University of Pittsburgh NCTA. 


Dr. Kirsten Strayer (Asian Studies Center and Screenshot:ASIA, University of Pittsburgh) 

Dr. Strayer is the program coordinator for Pitt’s Screenshot:ASIA series, and teaches for Pitt’s Film and Media Studies Program. She also has worked on film festivals in New York and in Pittsburgh, and is a specialist of Global Cinema with a subspecialty of Mexican cinema. 


Mr. Josh Foster (A. Mario Loiederman Middle School for the Creative and Performing Arts) 

Josh Foster is Instructor of Film Studies and English Literature and has been an NCTA alumnus since 2018. He has taught and developed curricula for students ranging in age from pre-kindergarten through to the university levels.  Seven of his fifteen years in education were spent teaching in Nanjing, China.  Thus, he can confidently be described as possessing a level of fluency in reading, writing, and speaking Mandarin commensurate with that of a native Chinese preschooler—except with regard to his debilitating ear for tones, which should only be characterized, at best, as reprehensible. Josh serves on the NCTA Board of Advisors with the University of Pittsburgh NCTA. 

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