Archive for the ‘Professional Development’ Category


Maine Educational Theatre Conference

September 15, 2014

Calling all Thespians

Friday, October 10, 2014
9:00 am to 5:15 pm
Russell Hall, University of Southern Maine
37 College Ave., Gorham, ME 04038

The Maine Educational Theatre Conference will be a full-day event (9:00am to 5:15pm) on Friday, October 10th held on the Gorham campus of the University of Southern Maine. All high school theater groups in Maine are welcome to attend, and groups of all sizes can attend, whether you’re bringing 2 students or 25 students! It’s a day for high school students and high school theater directors to attend workshops led by professional theater-makers and meet and share ideas with groups from other schools. Workshops include sessions on playwriting, vocal technique in musicals, stage combat, makeup design, and much much more.

Information available at


Exploring Women’s Testimony

September 13, 2014

Free International Conference, UMA

Exploring Women’s Testimony: Genocide, War, Revolution, The Holocaust, and Human Rights

On October  9th and 10th, 2014 the University of Maine at Augusta, Colby College, and the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine will jointly co-sponsor a free international conference to explore and advance awareness of gendered issues as it relates to human rights abuses. Exploring Women’s Tesitmony: Genocide, War, Revolution, The Holocaust, and Human Rights will explore the unique tapestries of women’s experiences as they recount and tell stories, and the fluctuation of memory. This narrative will be viewed through the lens of contemporary storytelling that includes literature, theater, cinema, art and new media.

The program begins on Thursday, October 9th, at the Michael Klahr Center of the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine on the campus of UMA. Four panels and presentations will be held during the day focusing on issues of women’s voices of the Holocaust, testimony in cinematic narrative, digital circulation and memorialization, and Art and the Representation of Women’s Trauma.

Following a dinner break, the evening will feature a lecture/play reading of Joyce Van Dyke’s Deported/A Dream Story, a play focusing on the Armenian genocide. The event will be led by the author.

On Friday October 10th, the conference will shift to Colby College in Waterville, where the panels and planned presentations include: Worldwide Perspectives: Women’s Voices, Voices from Rwanda, and The United States: Re-telling American Women’s Lost Voices.

The event will conclude with a reception at the Colby Museum of Art.

Presenters for the conference are scheduled to include:

Ethel  Brooks – Associate Professor in the Departments of Women’s and Gender Studies and Sociology at Rutgers University, and the Undergraduate  Director in the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies.

Audrey Brunetaux – Assistant Professor of French Studies at Colby College. Her research focuses on 20th-century French literature, culture and cinema with an emphasis on Holocaust narratives and films.

Clare  Byarugaba – Co-coordinator of the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law, and one of the leaders in the Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Inter sex (LGBTI) movement in Uganda.

Jennifer Cazenave – A Post-doctoral Teaching Fellow at Hobart and William Smith Colleges.  She is currently preparing a manuscript on the representation of women in the film Shoah, and in the outtakes of the film.

Rhea Cote Robbins – A Maine native, she is a founder and Executive Director of the Franco-American Women’s Institute.

Alexandre E. Dauge-Roth – An Associate Professor of French and Francophone Studies at Bates College. Topic for his presentation: Women’s Transformative Voices within the Literature Bearing witness to the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.

Joyce Van Dyke – An award-winning playwright, she is a MacDowell Colony Fellow, a Huntington Theater Playwriting Fellow and a winner of Boston’s  Elliot Norton Award. Joyce received her PhD from the University of Virginia. She currently teaches courses in Shakespeare at Harvard University’s Extension School.

Mona  El-Naggar – A video journalist at The New York Times, she produced her first film, Istislam, in 2013. It explores the Muslim Brotherhood’s grassroots work and prevailing attitude towards women.

Rangira (Bea) Gallimore – An Associate Professor at the University of Missouri-Columbia, she is the founder and president of Step Up! American Association for Rwandan Women. She is also a co-founder and member of the board of the Interdisciplinary Genocide Studies Center in Rwanda.

Christine Holden  – Associate Professor of History Emerita from the University of Southern Maine, where she taught courses in European and Russian history, including European Women’s History, and the first college-level class on the Holocaust in Maine.

Elmina  Kulasic- She is the Executive Director at the Association for Transitional Justice, Accountability and Remembrance. She served as the Project Development Coordinator and Interviewer at the Cinema for Peace Foundation in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where she was responsible for the collection of testimonies for the Genocide Film Library in Bosnia-Herzegovina Project.

Sarah  Lightman – A  London-based artist, curator, writer and filmmaker, her art focuses on graphic novels. She is the co-founder of Laydeez do Comics, the first women’s  led autobiographical  comic forum in the UK.

Jennifer Musto  – An Assistant Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at Wellesley College, her research broadly focuses on the laws, policies, and technologies designed to respond to prostitution, human and sex trafficking, and forced labor in the United States, with particular focus on individuals and communities deemed “at risk.”

Chris Myers Asch – He co-founded the Sunflower Country Freedom Project that provides educational opportunities to children in rural Mississippi. His first book, The Senator and the Sharecropper: The Freedom Struggles of James 0. Eastland and Fannie Lou Hamer, earned the Liberty Legacy Foundation Prize from the Organization of American Historians, the McLemore Prize from the Mississippi Historical Society, and the Mississippi Library Association Non-Fiction Award.

Parnian Nazary – She is an Advocacy Manager for Women for Afghan Women (WAW), a women’s human rights organization operating 28 centers in Afghanistan and a center in New York. She grew up in Afghanistan and Pakistan, is fluent in Dari/Farsi, Urdu, and Arabic; and conversational in Pashtu and Hindi. She is a graduate of Seeds of Peace program.

Anna Norris – A Professor of French Studies at Michigan State University, she has published two books on prison writings and women and war. She is currently finishing a book manuscript on Marie Cappelle LaFarge who was convicted of murdering her husband with arsenic in 1840 and was the first person to be convicted of a crime by direct forensic toxicological evidence.

Ellen Taylor – She is an Associate Professor of English at the University of Maine at Augusta, and a published poet. Topic for her presentation: The House as Metaphor: Women’s Testimony in Were The House Still Standing.

Shu-chin Tsui – She is an Associate Professor of Asian Studies and Film Studies at Bowdoin College, and the author of Women Through the Lens: Gender and Nation in a Centwy of Chinese Cinema. Topic for her presentation: Body and Pain: From Gendering the Body: Women’s Visual Art in Contemporary China.

Exploring Women’s Testimony: Genocide, War Revolution, The Holocaust, and Human Rights is aimed at students of all ages, educators, and life-long learners.

Contact hours for teachers and life-long learners are available by pre-registration.

For more information, the complete schedule, or to register for this free conference, visit or email


PK-12 Teaching Artist Roster

September 8, 2014

Opportunity for Teaching Artists

Maine Teaching Artists who met to discuss and brainstorm ideas for MACs Teaching Artist program.

Meeting with Maine Teaching Artists to discuss and brainstorm ideas for MACs Teaching Artist program, Spring 2014

In August I wrote a blog post called What is a Teaching Artist? that provided information on the ongoing work that the Maine Arts Commission (MAC) has made a commitment to PK-12 Teaching Artists and the Creative Aging Teaching Artist program.

Today I am happy to announce that the application for the PK-12 Teaching Artists Roster is available and information is online at the MAC website on the Teaching Artist page that you can access by clicking here.

Teaching Artist Roster

The Maine Arts Commission is presently accepting applications for the PK-12 Teaching Artists Roster. The roster will include artists whose applications reflect their expertise and commitment to providing learning opportunities for students and/or teachers in the PK-12 education setting. The Teaching Artist Roster will be promoted to those in PK-12 school settings and organizations who work wtih this age population.

Successful applicants will demonstrate:

  • Mastery of an artistic discipline
  • Knowledge and expertise in sequential arts instruction
  • Good communication skills
  • Planning and organizational ability
  • Understanding of PK-12 learners

How to Apply:

Please click here for the MAC page where the PK-12 Teaching Artist Application Form is located. If you have questions about the application, contact me at

Application Calendar 

September 8, 2014   PK-12 Teaching Artist Application available

September 29, 2014   Application deadline for PK-12 Teaching Artist

November 3, 2014   Teaching Artist roster available

Please forward the link to this page or the MAC page to your colleagues who are Teaching Artists and may be interested in being part of the MAC Teaching Artist roster.


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



The Arts as Inspiration

August 21, 2014

Barbara Harris Conference Center, Greenfield, NH

October 31 -November 2

Screen Shot 2014-08-05 at 10.10.11 PM


Screen Shot 2014-08-05 at 10.10.24 PM


In Today’s News

August 14, 2014

Just out from the Maine Department of Education, Commissioner’s Update

August 14, 2014


Maine Arts Assessment Initiative hosts New England Summit on Arts Education

The Maine DOE joined over 90 educators, teaching artists, and interdisciplinary teams at the New England Summit on Arts Education, July 29-August 1, at the University of Southern Maine in Portland. This three day professional training opportunity was coordinated by the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) and provided participants with a collaborative approach to explore methods of teaching, learning, and assessment in arts education.

Jeff Poulin, Arts Education Program Coordinator for Americans for the Arts, delivered an important message about the critical role of arts education in developing essential knowledge, skills and creative abilities needed for success in school, work and life. During the Summit, educators developed individual action plans focused on essential components of student learning and proficiency including arts integration, studio habits, technology and assessment.

Veteran teacher-leaders and educators new to MAAI joined together to learn from each other through numerous presentations, workshops and lectures. Over the past year, the MAAI teacher-leaders have developed standards-based units, including assessments, lesson plans and resources, and have provided guidance on how to select appropriate tools for classroom assessment. These materials are now available for review and use on the MAAI Resource Bank.

Representatives from the Department and arts organizations and institutions from across New England were in attendance at the Summit, including Lesley University, Lincoln Street Center and Northland Village Foundation, Maine Art Education Association, Maine Music Educators Association, Maine College of Art, New England Institute for Teacher Education, Portland Ovations, Portland Museum of Art, Portland Symphony Orchestra, and the Art Education and Music Education Departments of the University of Maine.

The Maine Arts Assessment Initiative was an initiative established in 2011 to create an environment in Maine where quality assessment is an integral part of the work of all integral part of the work of all arts educators in order to improve student achievement through teaching and learning. The initiative builds capacity through collaboration and the development of professional practices designed by teachers, for teachers.

For more information about MAAI, contact the Maine Arts Commission’s Director of Arts Education, Argy Nestor at or 207-287-2713.

For more information about arts integration, contact the DOE’s Visual and Performing Arts Specialist, Kevin Facer, at or 207-624-6826.

To read the above article on the Department’s website please click here.


Phase IV Teacher Leaders: MAAI

August 13, 2014

Teacher Leaders announced

MAAI Logo_Color_TxtCtrThe Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) is proud to announce the new Teacher Leaders who have stepped up to take on a leadership role during phase IV and the 2014-15 school year. The Summit on Arts Education officially launched Phase IV of the MAAI with the Summit on Arts Education held at USM, Portland, July 29-August 1.

The following are the new Teacher Leaders and below them you will find the Teacher Leaders returning for another year from a previous phase. To date, MAAI has provided professional development for 61 Teacher Leaders representing all regions of Maine. These teachers have created and presented workshops to over 1000 Maine educators during the first three phases of MAAI. Please join me in thanking them for taking on the leadership and providing learning opportunities for Maine teachers! MMAAI has 38 active teacher leaders participating during Phase IV! YAHOOOOO!

During the 2014-15 school year you will be able to read their Another Arts Teacher’s Story which is a series of blog post containing the Teacher Leaders stories. You can read the teacher stories from the last three years by searching for them on the blog using the search words “Another Arts Teacher’s Story”.

For a complete listing of the MAAI Teacher Leaders from all four phases please go to the new website and check out the Who We Are page under MAAI, specifically at!teacher-leaders/ceac.

New Teacher Leaders


  • Cynthia Keating, grades K-2, Village Elementary School, York
  • Frances Kellogg, grades K-4, Ellsworth Elementary Middle School
  • Pamela Kinsey, grades K-12, Easton Schools
  • Kate Smith, grades PK-3, Central Elementary School, South Berwick


  • Theresa Cerceo, grades K-12, Dr. Levesque Elementary School, Wisdom Middle/High School
  • Samantha Davis, grades 6-8, Molly Ockett Middle School
  • Michaela DiGianvittorio, grades 9-12, Gray-New Gloucester High School
  • Sarah Gould, grades 9-12, Gray-New Gloucester High School


  • Emma A. Campbell, grades 9-12, Thornton Academy

Returning Teacher Leaders from Phase I, II, and/or III


  • Drew Albert, grades 9-12, Maranacook Community High School
  • Sue Barre, grades 5-12, Waterville Senior High School
  • Jennifer Etter, grades 5-8, York Middle School
  • Judy Fricke, early childhood, Maine Street Music Studios
  • Patricia Gordan, grades K-4, Raymond Elementary School
  • Jane Kirton, grades 9-12, Sanford High School
  • Linda McVety, grades K-5, Songo Locks Elementary School
  • Jen Nash, grades 5-8, Sebasticook Valley Middle School
  • Jenni Null, grades K-6, Songo Locks Elementary School
  • Ashley Smith, grades 9-12, Brunswick High School
  • Jake Sturtevant, grades 9-12, Bonny Eagle High School
  • Shari Tarleton, grades 6-8, Brunswick Junior High School


  • Amy Cousins, grades 6-8, Gorham Middle School
  • Melanie Crowe, grades 6-8, Marshwood Middle School
  • Jennie Driscoll, grades 9-12, Brunswick High School
  • Suzanne Goulet, grades 9-12, Waterville Senior High School
  • Gloria Hewett, grades 6-8, Mount View Middle School
  • Lisa Ingraham, grades K-4, Madison Elementary School
  • Danette Kerrigan, grades 6-8, Sacopee Valley Middle School
  • Charlie Johnson, grades 9-12, Mount Desert Island High School
  • Lisa Marin, grades K-12, Jonesport-Beals High School and Union #103
  • Brian McPherson, grades K-5, Woodside Elementary School
  • Jeff Orth, grades 6-12 Richmond Middle/High Schools
  • Pam Ouellette, grades 9-12, Lisbon High School
  • Janie Snider, grades K-8, Hancock Grammar School


  • MaryEllen Schaper, grades 6-8, Bonny Eagle Middle School


  • Beth Lambert, grades 9-12, Carrabec High School
  • Lisa Neal, grades 9-12, Nokomis Regional High School

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 980 other followers

%d bloggers like this: