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Teacher rides grant to China


How did Quatama Elementary School music teacher Carissa Martus spend her summer vacation?

In China — thanks to a $6,000 Hilton Hotels Teacher Trek grant that allowed her to investigate music and theater arts programs around that country, including the Peking Opera, the Beijing Art College, the National Performing Arts Center and several grade schools.

Martus also visited Tiananmen Square, site of the famous 1989 student demonstrations, and X’ian, one of the oldest cities in China.

After her return to the U.S. in July, she created a detailed scrapbook about her Asian adventures, which she’ll share with students after the 2013-14 school year starts this week.

Martus is a graduate of Aloha High School and is in her sixth year as a K-6 music teacher in the Hillsboro School District.

— Nancy Townsley