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Embassy Adoption Program

A partnership between Washington Performing Arts and D.C. Public Schools, the Embassy Adoption Program annually connects 2,500 fifth- and sixth-grade students in schools in all D.C. wards with up to 75 embassies and other diplomatic entities including consular offices, government offices, representative offices, and others. Diplomats and teachers design an individualized curriculum based on the culture of the country or region, available resources, D.C. Public School curriculum standards, and needs of the students. Diplomats visit the schools to give students a personalized understanding of their nation's positions on various world issues. Washington Performing Arts Women's Committee members and members of the community serve as classroom volunteers to support the teachers and diplomats throughout the year. Classes in the Embassy Adoption Program also have the opportunity to work with Washington Performing Arts Teaching Artists to gain greater insight into the art forms of different nations and their cultures. The EAP has inspired many students to continue exploring world cultures in high school through DCPS's International Studies Program.

Embassy Adoption Program - South AfricaEmbassy Adoption Program - MexicoEmbassy Adoption Program - Sweden

Elements of the Program

Fall Workshops/Events
Each fall, Embassy Adoption Program staff hold workshops for diplomats, teachers, and volunteers to introduce the program and give tips for success. Teachers and diplomats have a chance to meet at the Diplomatic Tea, a celebratory kick-off and planning event.

Classroom Visits
Throughout the year, students learn from their teachers and from embassy representatives about their adopted countries through student centered lessons and projects.

Field Trips
Students often travel to cultural centers, museums, film screenings, and even restaurants to gain hands-on experience with their adopted culture.

Final Presentations
In the spring, students are invited to demonstrate what they have learned about their adopted country by performing a presentation for diplomatic representatives at the embassy, ambassador’s residence, or other similar location. Past performances have included skits, music, dance, and puppet shows.

United Nations Simulations
Students have a unique experience by attending either the Mini UN for 5th graders or the Model UN for 6th graders. In the spring, select student delegates convene in a General Assembly situation to debate and vote on resolutions relating to global challenges, like climate change.

The Embassy Adoption Program is a partnership of D.C. Public Schools and Washington Performing Arts.

Support for the Embassy Adoption Program is provided by The Boeing Company; Pepco, An Exelon Company; Events DC; Capitol Hill Community Foundation; and Thrasher Koffey Foundation, in loving memory and honor of Gloria Thrasher.

Education programs at Washington Performing Arts are made possible in part by the D.C. Commission on the Arts & Humanities; U.S. Commission of Fine Arts and the National Capital Arts and Cultural Affairs Program; Jacqueline Badger Mars and Mars, Incorporated; The Edith Glick Shoolman Children’s Foundation; The Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation; Philip L. Graham Fund; Park Foundation, Inc.; Mr. Bruce Rosenblum and Ms. Lori Laitman; Prince Charitable Trusts; Mr. Peter Buscemi and Ms. Judith Miller; Sunny and Bill Alsup; Estate of Dr. Josephine S. Huang; Nancy Peery Marriott Foundation; Dr. Robert Misbin; Mary Jo Veverka; The Nora Roberts Foundation; Gary and Silvia Yacoubian/SVS; CHIME & Dorothy Marschak; Dimick Foundation; Graham Holdings Company; Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Milstein/The Greene-Milstein Family Foundation; Peace Love and Joy, in memory of Arman Simone; Venable Foundation; George Wasserman Family Foundation, Inc.; Dr. W. Stephen and Diane E. Piper; Ms. Sara E. Sanders/Sanders Foundation; and Dr. and Mrs. Joseph H. Danks. Includes gifts from September 1, 2022 – August 31, 2023.


Events DC


Pepco, An Exelon Company


DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities