h1

Pam Kinsey Blog Post

April 21, 2014

Aroostook county Music educator Pam Kinsey makes a statement!

The following post was contributed by K-12 music educator Pam Kinsey who teaches in Easton, Maine. Easton is in Aroostook county, about a 20 minute drive east of Presque Isle. There are several arts educators in Maine who teach K-12, many in rural areas. The Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) makes a commitment to all arts educators in Maine providing professional development opportunities for rural, urban, and everything in between. Pam has served on the MAAI leadership team for 2 years representing Maine Music Educators Association. The leadership team is thrilled that Pam will be attending the New England Summit on Arts Education at USM, July 29, 30, 31 and August 1. This is Pam’s first summer joining the professional development opportunity and we all hope that you can join us as well!

IMG_3233How to write a blog post? I guess you just start to write down your thoughts. Are you part of a small or rural school system? Are you a department of one? What do you think when they say (for professional development days):  ‘We are going to work by department” and you think ‘hmmmm….me, myself and I—again. What if you could be part of a team? Perhaps develop curriculum and rubrics, lesson plans and grading strategies with others from your discipline? Tackle standards-based learning outcomes with someone who has the same struggles and celebrations that you encounter on a daily basis? The Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) probably has something for you! For many years (over 20!)

I have been a department of one. The neighboring town now has a music department of one and the communities two over from my district each have music departments of one. What a great idea if we could all collaborate to create meaningful instruction that aligns at least with one another as we pore over new curriculum expectations and standards-based outcomes? Often, our populations are transitory and some students travel freely from district to district, depending on a parent’s current situation. I, for one, would love to avoid the gaps that all of this moving can create for students, as well as a seamless flow of curriculum through the grade levels for students that don’t move around. I would like to do this in a group of more than one!

The MAAI is responding to feedback and offering the ‘New England Summit on Arts Education’ this summer, July 29, 30, 31, USM, Portland, and it has opportunities for individuals and teams to work together to problem solve these and other aspects of teaching and learning for our students in the arts. I already have a few choices in mind of other music educators that I can contact and I can only hope that they will share my interest. If not, I know that when I attend I will still find others who share my concerns and attitudes toward wanting to provide the best education in the arts that I can and these people will become part of my learning community. Either way I am sure it will be a win-win opportunity for my students and for me!

IMG_2908For more information on the New England Summit please go to http://mainearts.maine.gov/Pages/Education/NESummit#. Registration is now open with an early bird discount for those who register by May 30. The Summit is being customized to meet your needs. There is a team discount for those who register with at least from a district. The team strand is not only open to PreK-12 district Visual and Peforming Arts teachers and classroom teachers, but also to administrators, teaching artists, community cultural organizations or institute members, parents, and/or school board members. Check out the link above to learn more.

If you are interested in joining the MAAI as a teacher leader please attend the 3-day Summit and the additional day for teacher leaders only, August 1. If you have questions about the Summit and/or being a teacher leader, please contact Argy Nestor at argy.nestor@maine.gov.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: