Archive for the ‘Creativity’ Category


Art for Life

September 5, 2014

Based on Studio Thinking

Thanks to Belfast High School Art Teacher and president of the Maine Art Education Association, Heidi O’Donnell for sending this link.


Assessing Creativity

September 4, 2014

Can it be done?


Kate Smith

Thanks to Central Elementary School in South Berwick and Maine Arts Assessment Initiative Teacher Leader Kate Smith for the following review of an article entitled Assessing Creativity. The article is from Educational Leadership.

This is a fantastic article from Educational Leadership about assessing creativity. I like how the author illustrated the importance of separating the assessment of the content knowledge from creativity. I can remember (as a student) a rubric in which covering the content was “mastered”, or an “A” but if you were creative, you got an “A+”. It always felt wrong. Or how about when you’d ask your teacher for feedback and she’d say, “well… (pause) it was creative.” (Okay, maybe that only happened to me.) And I also like the definition of “creative” in this article. Yup, it was a good article!

To read the article please click here.




Articles and More Articles

September 3, 2014

Been waiting to be posted

You know every so often I take several articles that are sent to me and I put the links into one blog post. Well, this is that post. Filled with all kinds of interesting information and resources. Some of it you may want to share with your students, colleagues and/or parents.

  • The New York Times Science research report on the long-term benefits of music lessons. Read about it by clicking here.

Thanks to David Cadigan for sending me this information. 

  • From a blog post title Music: The Essentials of Tone Production and Its Ties with Art. Check it out by clicking here.

Thanks to Sebasticook Valley Middle School Music Teacher and Maine Arts Assessment Teacher Leader Jen Nash for sending this information.

  • You can use your voice: UNESCO keep Creativity and Arts Education as a fundamental priority. If interested please click here.

Thanks to Performing Arts Teacher at Carrabec High School and Maine Arts Assessment Teacher Leader Beth Lambert for sending this information.

  • Teacher in a Strange Land, Nancy Flanagan taught music for 30 years. In this blog post she weighs in on STEAM while co-teaching a course on the topic. To read the post please click here.
  • Using Essential Questions in Interdisciplinary Lessons video, to watch click here.

Thanks to Ellsworth High School art teacher and Maine Arts Assessment Initiative Teacher Leader Leah Olson for sharing this information.

  • An interesting slide show on digital portfolios by Frank Chimero.  Click here to access.
  • An article that was published in Fortune magazine: What entrepreneurs can learn from artists written by Tim Leberecht. To read the article please click here.

Thanks to Ed Brazee for sending this information.


Jobs and the Arts and Humanities

September 1, 2014

Re-printed from Americans for the Arts Arts Education Weekly News Roundup

When you think “jobs,” do you think “arts and humanities”? No? Well, maybe you should. You see, as the world gets bigger and the world’s problems become more complex, employers seek more critical, comprehensive, and creative leaders. And the arts and humanities provide just that. To read the entire article please click here.



International Dot Day

August 29, 2014

Celebrate Creativity, Courage & Collaboration? – September 15

dot_secInternational Dot Day, a global celebration of creativity, courage and collaboration, began when teacher Terry Shay introduced his classroom to Peter H. Reynolds’ book The Dot on September 15, 2009. The Dot is the story of a caring teacher who dares a doubting student to trust in her own abilities by being brave enough to “make her mark”. What begins with a small dot on a piece of paper becomes a breakthrough in confidence and courage, igniting a journey of self-discovery and sharing, which has gone on to inspire countless children and adults around the globe.

Imagine the power and potential of a million people all around the world connecting, collaborating, creating and celebrating all that creativity inspires and invites. I hope you will join the growing global community of creativity champions using their talents, gifts and energy to move the world to a better place. Sign up now and celebrate Dot Day!

You can sign up to join the celebration by clicking here. And, available for teachers is an downloadable Educators Handbook which you can obtain for by clicking here.

This information is taken from the International Dot Day website that you can access by clicking here.


Art and Music Courses

August 24, 2014

Course Opportunities for Art and Music Educators

As arts educators, we know how important a quality arts education is for every student. That is why we are constantly seeking to improve teaching and learning  in our classrooms. And the arts have never been more relevant and essential than they are right now – in the 21st century.  But where do we find quality, professional development in arts education?

The New England Institute for Teacher Education is proud to announce that it will be offering three courses in Visual Art and Music Assessment practices this fall to any Art or Music educators, K-12.  The courses are all taught by leaders in art and music education who have played an integral role in the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative in the past three years.

Don’t miss this special opportunity to work with Rob Westerberg, who will be bringing the Music course to Hanover, New Hampshire (Vermont and New Hampshire music educators, take note!), Jake Sturtevant who is teaching Music Assessment in Standish, Maine, or Catherine Ring who is teaching Visual Art Assessment in Bangor, Maine.  All of these courses meet on teacher-friendly schedules (two weekend sessions with 10-12 weeks in between) and are tailored to meet each individual’s needs.

If you want to be in on the most current thinking, research and best practices used in arts classrooms, this is a great way to get started and connect to a network of other professionals and a wealth of shared resources. Over 85 arts educators have taken advantage of arts assessment courses through the New England Institute and many have taken on leadership roles in their schools and districts as a result of their work. Three graduate credits will be awarded upon successful completion through the New England Institute’s academic partnership with Endicott College.

So please join us. We’re excited to share what we have with you and to learn from you!

Questions?  Call the New England Institute at 207-367-5807 or email

Catherine, Rob and Jake



Drawing with Camera-Like Precision

August 22, 2014

Twins reproduce Edward Steichen photogragh

Identical twins Ryan and Trevor Oakes have come up with a method for “tracing camera-obscura renderings”  onto a concave grid. The article in The New York Times Magazine from August 15 provides the information and a video with the twins discussing their work. It is very cool and I highly recommend that you check it out by clicking here.

Thanks to Anne Kofler for sending me the information.



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