"The theatre is a spiritual and social
X-ray of its time."

Stella Adler

My name is Gretchen Nordleaf-Nelson. For over 25 years I have enjoyed working and learning with students in suburban, urban and independent school settings in four different states. I joined the faculty of West Sound Academy, Poulsbo, Washington in 2013.

Prior to my work with West Sound Academy I taught with George School, Newtown, Pennsylvania, the Central Kitsap School District, Olympic College, and the Bellingham Public School District. Over the course of my tenure I have taught English (9-12), IB Language and Literature, IB Theatre, Acting, Play Production, Theatre Studies, Creative Dramatics, Media Design as an IB Visual Art, Journalism, ELL Literature and History, Religion, Art History and Holistic Health.

I hold a B.A. in Secondary Education (Theatre, English and Secondary Education) from Western Washington University and a M.A. (Theatre Administration) from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. My Teacher Certification includes Washington, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and New Jersey.

I am a national adjudicator for the Educational Theatre Association and a member of the Washington State Thespian Board of Directors. 

When I'm not busy in my classroom or directing the after school play I enjoy the adventures of parenting our four children, gardening, trying out new recipes and experiencing theatre as often as life permits.

 Dear Educators,

Please drop me a note if you would like to use any of the materials on this site or link my site to yours. I enjoy collaborating across borders- political, geographical, curricular, and cultural.  If YOU have materials you would like to see on this site that you feel can be of support and assistance to students and fellow IB Theatreeducators - please share them with me and I will cite you as the author.

I can be reached at

Photo ~ The Secret in the Wings  Rehearsal~ West Sound Academy ~ Fall 2015