Archive for September, 2011


Bucksport Celebrates Arts Education at the Blaine House

September 30, 2011

Student artists recognized at Blaine House

Brandon Snow accepts his award

Student artists from Bucksport schools were recognized at the home of Maine’s Governor Paul LePage on September 27 for their achievements in arts education.

The 24 students from Bucksport Middle and High School, Orland School and Miles Lane School have had artwork they produced in classes with Holly Bertrand, Leah Olson, Linda Babb, and Margaret Jones displayed at the offices of the Maine Department of Education for the past three months as part of a rotating exhibit of student artwork.

First Lady Ann LePage, Education Commissioner Stephen Bowen and State Board of Education member Marilyn Tardy congratulated the students during a Celebration of Arts Education at the Blaine House attended by the students, family members and friends.

Ashleigh West

The student artwork on display at the Maine Department of Education changes every three months. The student artists are recognized at the end of the three-month period.

Photographs by Matt Stone


Ken Robinson on Changing Education

September 29, 2011

Paradigm shift

I’ve posted other pieces on Ken Robinson which I always find interesting. Sir Kenneth provides the opportunity to think, think, and think some more. This would be a good video to use for discussion with colleagues around where we are in education today.


Music and Learning

September 28, 2011

Music as Inspiration

There are non-music educators who understand the value of music in their classrooms as an inspirational, motivational, tool and for the connections in the brain to help in learning. We know in many cases students need music to help them process their learning. Kathy Freeman is an elementary teacher who sees the connection and uses music when teaching writing. In an article published in Education Week Teacher she explains the numerous ways that she utilizes music to enhance her lessons and how music is the foundation for learning. I suggest sharing the ideas and the link with your colleagues.

The author realizes that some educatorss disagree with her methods. Since they are distracted by music when they work they think that students are as well. Harvard Medical School neuroscientist Mark Jude Tramo affirms what the author knows to be true from his research Music on the Brain.

Using this information informally in conversation with students, parents and/or colleagues or as an agenda item for a teachers meeting is an avenue to raise awareness about the value of arts education. If you have a minute I suggest you read the articles/research.


Statewide Conference Highlights

September 27, 2011

October 7, 2011 – USM, Portland

Logo design by Suzanne Goulet

As many of you are aware planning for a conference takes an enormous amount of time and commitment from many individuals. Our arts assessment conference on October 7th, Arts Teachers Lead the Way… Back to the Future: Arts Assessment For Learning, is no exception. There are so many people who have taken on leadership on the many parts of the conference. Almost everyday another detail is taken care of and a piece of the conference falls in place. (Like the logo above.) This blog post provides some details that have been confirmed during the last month since the original information for the conference was posted at

  • The Windham High School Chamber Singers under the direction of Dr. Rick Nickerson will be performing during the opening session
  • MLTI Coordinator of Educational Technology, Steve Garton, will provide a Lunch and Learn session entitled Rock ‘n Roll Assessment
  • Yahoooooo time and Back to the Future with Karen Montanaro during the closing session

Along with general sessions at the opening, lunchtime, and closing there are 15 workshops to select from that are being led by the Maine’s teacher leaders in arts education. The sessions cover elementary, middle, and high school, the 4 arts disciplines, assessment, technology, leadership. Workshop presenter information is located on the conference website at this link. Workshop descriptions at this link. There is still space and time to register. The registration form is at this link. If you have questions please contact me at

If you are attending please be sure and bring something to weave into our collaborative artwork “On the Road in the Landscape of Assessment” that will be created during the conference. You can learn more at this link.

The overall schedule for the day is below.

7:45AM – 8:45AM: Registration

coffee, tea, juice

8:45AM – 9:30AM: Opening session

  • Welcome and Initiative Overview -What’s this all about?
  • Greetings from Maine Department of Education – Wanda Monthey
  • Student Performance – Windham High School Chamber Singers under the direction of Dr. Rick Nickerson
  • Collaborative Keynote: Context and Connection in the Arts – Shalimar Poulin, Rob Westerberg, Jeff Beaudry
  • Greetings from USM – Selma Botman

9:45AM – 10:55AM  Workshop 1

Morning snacks – on the go

11:10AM – 12:20PM Workshop 2

12:35PM – 1:50PM Lunch and Learn presentation: Rock ‘n Roll Assessment with Steve Garton, Coordinator of Educational Technology, MDOE

2:05PM – 3:15PM Workshop 3

3:15PM – 4:00PM Yahoooo time and Back to the Future: Karen Montanaro

Closing reception

I understand that some teachers are unable to attend due to commitments in their own schools/districts on October 7th. The teacher leaders will be offering sessions across the state during the 2011-12 school year. Watch the blog for a listing of those dates and times. Also, the arts education initiative on assessment information will be provided by webinar. Information and details on the webinars is located at


Congratulations Mary McCarthy-ACTEM Teacher of the Year

September 26, 2011

Art Teacher recognized

Mary McCarthy, middle school art educator at the Middle School of the Kennebunks has been named the Association of Computer Technology Educators of Maine (ACTEM) Teacher of the Year.

Mary was nominated by Assistant Principal Jean Beaulieu who wrote:

Mary designs learning activities that tap diverse student skills and promote purposeful learning that supports the 21st century skills students will need to be successful. Students in Mary’s classes are active participants in learning that is collaborative and reality based. Her students explore many creative uses for technology and are having fun while meeting the learning objectives of the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program as this relates to the visual performing arts.

Each year for the past five years, students from the Middle School of the Kennebunks’ Talented Artist Program have redesigned rooms at The Nonantum Resort. Once the eco-friendly rooms are done — 10 so far, complete with green design, rich fabrics and elegant bathrooms, as well as podcasts designed to play on guests’ iPods — the students always receive much praise from teachers, parents and other community members.

Mary will be honored at the ACTEM dinner on October 13th at the start of their conference.


Mary McCarthy

Information for this post is from and the ACTEM newsletter.


Trimble Leaves Maine Arts Alliance

September 25, 2011

Executive Director Carol Trimble leaves her post

Carol at the 2007 statewide arts ed conference

Carol Trimble, Executive Director of the Maine Alliance for Arts Education for the past 10 years, has announced that she will be leaving that position at the end of December. In making the announcement, Trimble said, “Being MAAE’s Executive Director has provided me with such satisfying opportunities—the chance to work with many inspired and inspiring educators, artists, and advocates who are deeply committed to ensuring that Maine students have the opportunity for an outstanding education; the chance to observe first hand the accomplishments in the arts of Maine students; the chance to provide recognition to students, parents, artists, educators, organizations, and communities that are doing amazing, creative work; and the chance to work with colleagues from across the country in the KCAAEN.”

As Executive Director of MAAE and leader of the Arts are Basic Coalition (ABC), Carol oversaw advocacy that led to the Maine Department of Education hiring an arts staff person for the first time in many years, as well as leading successful campaigns to maintain strong graduation requirements in the arts. She created MAAE’s LINC-Arts mentorship program as well as Arts Education Connections, a network of education staff in Maine’s arts and cultural organizations. Carol also oversaw Maine’s first statewide Census of Opportunities to Learn in the Arts and the creation of the unique Imagination Intensive Communities project which received recognition from the national Partnership for 21st Century Skills for its innovative approach. She served on the Network Leadership Committee of the Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education Network (KCAAEN) and on the Governor’s Council for the Creative Economy. She received the Maine Music Educators 2010 Appreciation Award for her advocacy work on behalf of Maine students.

Mike Edgecomb, MAAE’s Board Chair, said “It is with much regret that we accept Carol’s resignation. The Board of Trustees is very pleased with Carol’s many accomplishments during her tenure and her dedication to arts education in Maine. She will be missed by all, and we wish her great success in her future plans.”

MAAE’s Board is in the process of appointing an interim director who will manage the organization for six months. The Board will announce the start of its search for the Executive Director position at a later date.

For more information on MAAE’s activities, programs, and events, visit


Just for Fun!

September 24, 2011

Be creative everyday

This is just simple fun…!


STEAM again!

September 23, 2011


“Science and technology aspire to clean, clear answers to problems (as elusive as those answers may be). The humanities address ambiguity, doubt, and skepticism – essential underpinnings in a complex, diverse and turbulent world.” – Dr. Alan Brinkley

During the last year or so I have written many posts on STEAM, not STEM that have provided you with outstanding articles and a variety of information to help you become better acquainted with the STEM initiateive and now STEAM.

The website called STEAM and has useful information including power points from webinars on 1) Arts and Education Webinar 2) Neuroeducation: Learning, Arts and the Brain and, 3) The Arts, Creativity and Cultural Education: An International Perspective. The first link is a power point from the webinar.



September 22, 2011

Three young singers

Il Volo are three young men from Italy who have marvelous voices. It you haven’t heard of them I suggest you sit down with a cup of tea, in a comfy chair, put your feed up, and click on the following:

Piero Barone is 17 years old, Ignazio Boschetto is 16, and Gianluca Ginoble is 16 and they are Il Volo.


Nominate Your School Board

September 21, 2011

Kennedy Center board award

The Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education Network (KCAAEN) and the
National School Boards Association (NSBA) would like to request your help in spreading the word about an award recognizing a local school board for outstanding support of the arts in education. The winning school board receives a plaque presented at the NSBA Annual Conference along with a cash award of $10,000 to use for their arts education programs.

For more information and to apply for the KCAAEN and NSBA Award, please

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