For Phyllis Vecchia, history is best taught by bringing it to life.

Through her Women in History program, Ms. Vecchia uses song and theatrical presentations to introduce Vineyard students each year to important women in history.

This year, students at the Tisbury and Chilmark schools studied Greta Thunberg, Abigail Adams, Clara Lemlich (a labor organizer), and Mary Chapman Lawrence, who went to sea with her whaler husband.

Ms. Vecchia has also taught students about Ida B. Wells in the past.

Classes usually begin with a song, Yankee Doodle Dandy for the class on Abigail Adams, Bread and Roses and Solidarity Forever for the class on Clara Lemlich. Ms. Vecchia, in collaboration with other teachers, teaches the students about the time period in which the women lived and their history.

Ms. Vecchia has taught children’s theatre for over 30 years. She was inspired to incorporate historical women into her work when she saw that her second child, Kae, wasn’t being taught about women in their history classes.

“I realized they weren’t really learning much about women at all,” Ms. Vecchia said. “I was raised in the women’s movement and I really thought by now that things may have been different, but a lot of the history books just have sidebars about women.”

In her lessons, Ms. Vecchia has students act out scripts about the women and their accomplishments.

“I really deeply believe in the arts as a tool of learning. I’ve heard from the teachers, the kids remember the work,” Ms. Vecchia said. “I love children, and I love theatre and I like history. I combined the things I love.”